written by Anastassia Pogoutse

The Naylor Report, summarized by Andrew Zhai in this post, provides a recipe for reinvigorating Canadian research. However, without concrete action by the federal government, the Naylor Report’s recommendations will be nothing but text. Canadian scientists have taken to using the hashtag #SupportTheReport to promote the Naylor Report’s recommendations. More critically, they have taken to writing letters to Members of Parliament, urging them to take the report seriously. As Joe Sparling, Chair of the Canadian Association of Postdoctoral Scholars (CAPS) puts it:

If Canadian researchers and trainees want the federal government to implement the recommendations of the Naylor report then we need to convince the government that those changes are needed and in the best interest of Canadian society.

And they are. In Canada, the type of independent investigator-driven research that the report champions has led to the discovery of insulin, paved the way for Lewis Kay’s Gairdner Award-winning research, and has laid the foundations for deep learning, which is attracting companies like Google to Toronto. Internationally, fundamental scientific research has led to advancements such as immunotherapy and CRISPR. With that in mind, the following is a list of pointers for those who would like to make their voice heard:


Writing it

  • Introduce yourself. Talk a little bit about who you are, where you work, and the awesome science you do.
  • Introduce the Naylor Report as a study organized by the federal government to address science funding issues in Canada. Ideally, provide an example of how adopting its recommendations would affect you personally.
  • Keep it brief. A shorter letter is more likely to get read. Keep it to under a page.
  • For more ideas and examples, see the excellent guide here 


Sending it

  • Don’t pay for postage. That’s it. You don’t need a stamp to send MPs letters, either to Ottawa or to their constituency offices.
  • Find the address of your MP here or see below. Remember to send copies to the Minister of Finance, Bill Morneau, Minister of Health, Jane Philpott, and Minister of Science, Kirsty Duncan.
  • Use the right style of address. You should address the letter differently if your MP is a current or former cabinet member. For more information see here.


Next steps

  • Organize a letter-writing event. 
  • Request a meeting with your MP. To find out how, see here.
  • Invite your MP to visit your lab. In response to the letter-writing campaign, an MP has accepted an invitation to visit the Biochemistry Department this summer.


Twitter campaign

In the Put a Face on Canadian Science” Twitter campaign, researchers introduce themselves and their research, and mention (tag) Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau.


More links

Read the Naylor Report at www.sciencereview.ca where you can also find the Executive Summary.

Tips for writing to your MPs at Imagine Canada.

Evidence for Democracy has launched its own campaign, and provides templates and examples of letters: https://evidencefordemocracy.ca/

#Students4TheReport is a video campaign that has researchers filming 1-2 minute videos about why they support the Naylor Report

The Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences has a summary of the findings generated by two different reports looking at Canadian science: https://twitter.com/CSMB_SCBM/status/884397699382030336


Some addresses

PM Justin Trudeau

The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, P.C., M.P.
Prime Minister of Canada
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2

Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and MP for Etobicoke North

The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Science
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance and MP for Toronto Centre

The Honourable Bill Morneau, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Finance
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Jane Philpott, Minister of Health and MP for Markham—Stouffville

The Honourable Jane Philpott, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Health
Confederation Building, Suite 162
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs and MP for University-Rosedale

The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Foreign Affairs
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Adam Vaughan, MP for Spadina-Fort York

Mr. Adam Vaughan, M.P.
Justice Building
Suite: 418
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6

Julie Dabrusin, MP for Toronto-Danforth

Ms. Julie Dabrusin, M.P.
Justice Building, Room 800
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs and MP for Toronto-St. Paul’s

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs
Justice Building, Room 106
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Here is a map of electoral districts in Toronto. 



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