Trudeau’s Health Minister wants to empower the WHO

Trudeau’s Health Minister, Jean-Yves Duclos, says he wants to give the World Health Organization (WHO) even more power.

“The health, economic and social costs of not being adequately prepared are catastrophic. That’s why Canada supports the idea of a new multilateral instrument to ensure better preparedness,” Health Minister Duclos said at the WHO World Health Assembly, a clear indication that Canada will sign the pandemic treaty.

“This is also precisely why institutions like the WHO are so important. The WHO has played a key role in international health cooperation since its creation and, even more so, since the beginning of this pandemic,” he continued.

“Canada believes that the WHO must be able to continue in this role. As we enter the third year of this pandemic, it is clearer than ever: the world needs a strong WHO. Like all multilateral institutions, a strong WHO needs to be sustainably financed, transparent, and accountable.”

Duclos also said that attendees are lucky to be able to meet in person and that this “proves that we have come a long way since the beginning of the pandemic” before saying it’s not over.

“However, our fight is not over. Because this pandemic is not over,” Duclos said.

Duclos subsequently tweeted out his support for the theme of the WHO this year — the Orwellian-sounding phrase “Peace for Health, Health for Peace” and reiterated Canada’s support for Ukraine.

“There cannot be health without peace. The pandemic, climate change and ongoing armed conflicts around the world are adding to the numerous challenges the health care community is facing,” Duclos said.

“In the light of this, we need to be united in our unequivocal condemnation of all wars, including Putin’s unjustifiable invasion of Ukraine, and we need to be firm in our condemnation of any and all attacks targeting health workers, health care supplies, and health facilities.”

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