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25 / February / 2016

How Open and Accountable Governments Can Help Address Extremism

As a result of the Policy Dialogue 2015, Club de Madrid’s members, experts, and policymakers developed a Global Consensus on […]

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As a result of the Policy Dialogue 2015, Club de Madrid’s members, experts, and policymakers developed a Global Consensus on how to counter violent extremism and radicalization. Ten benchmarks were defined as principles and recommendations for global leaders as a guide to tackle this global problem.

The first benchmark focuses on the promotion of open and accountable governments and calls upon all leaders to protect minority rights. The importance of a legitimate and strong government is key in preventing and countering violent extremism, as well as making a genuine commitment to human rights and to practicing democratic values.

Club de Madrid promotes democratic political leadership and believes democracies must be accountable to their peoples and deliver tangible results, as stated in the Global Consensus.

Recently, the Canadian Prime Minister completed his first one hundred days since he assumed office. As the second youngest to hold office, Justin Trudeau promised to bring about change as he ushers a “new era of openness and transparency in Canada.”

“Our plan for an open and accountable government will allow us to modernize how the Government of Canada works, so that it betters reflects the values and expectations of Canadians. At its heart is a simple idea: open government is good government,” said Justin Trudeau.

To prove his commitment to the Canadian population, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released “Open and Accountable Government,” a guide or conduct for his Ministers, where their roles and responsibilities are set out, as well as the expectations they must live up to.

In addition, each member of the cabinet received a mandate letter from the Prime Minister with a clear message for openness and transparency. He made these letters public for the first time in the history of Canada “so Canadians can hold us accountable to deliver on our commitments,” said Justin Trudeau.

“It is time to shine more light on government to ensure it remains focused on the people it serves. […] Government and its information should be open by default. […] It is important that we acknowledge mistakes when we make them,” says on the letters.

Among Mr. Trudeau’s commitments are access to information, open data, open parliament, diversity in government, and delivering easy online access to government services. Much in line with benchmark one!

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