For many people engaged in CED and the social economy, the federal government's recent recognition of these sectors is a cause for celebration. Eric Shragge is sceptical. The more of a "partner" to governments we become, he warns, the more of a stake we have in making poverty tolerable, instead of rooting it out altogether.
"The turn toward the community is always contradictory as alternative and opposition forces co-exist with forces that support the current neo-liberal policies of the Martin government. The assumption that everyone in the community shares common interests is blatantly false. It is clear from this government funding initiative and the related rhetoric that its vision of CED and the social economy fits with its commitment to a neo-liberal agenda, which implies the commodification of everything, including social development."