The Writers’ Union of Canada advocates on behalf of writers’ collective interests. TWUC meets and communicates with all levels of government here in Canada, with our colleague organizations in Canada and around the world, and with representatives of other arts sector, education and library organizations. In so doing we advance our vision of a thriving, diverse Canadian culture that values and supports writers.

Past advocacy work by the Union has led to such notable achievements as the establishment of Canada’s Public Lending Right, and the collective copyright licensing carried on by Access Copyright. Advocacy priorities are determined through ongoing discussion at regional meetings, National Council, and TWUC’s annual general meeting. Here are TWUC’s active advocacy files:

  • Accessibility – TWUC applies its accessibility policy to all Union activities, and calls for the same principles to be broadly adopted across the writing and publishing sector.
  • Basic Income Guarantee – TWUC advocates for a Basic Income Guarantee that would help to stabilize authors’ earning patterns and provide the stability necessary to continue creating.
  • Canadian Books in Schools – TWUC calls for legislative solutions in all provinces to ensure Canadian authored and published books are a substantial part of school curricula and reading lists.
  • Copyright – TWUC advocates for strong and fair copyright legislation in Canada and around the world in order to ensure writers maintain control of their work and are paid fairly for its use.
  • COVID-19 Relief – TWUC responds to the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and advocates for author eligibility for emergency relief funds.
  • Equity & Inclusion – All of TWUC’s activities are informed by equity principles, and TWUC calls for the same principles to be broadly adopted across the writing and publishing sector.
  • Fair Contracts – TWUC advocates for contract terms that fairly reflect the labour behind authors’ works, the ownership of their copyright, and changing practical realities within the publishing industry.
  • Federal Budget – TWUC submits strategic recommendations to the federal government’s pre-budget consultations.
  • Freedom to Read – TWUC has long fought state censorship restrictions on which works individuals can access and read. TWUC believes the freedom to read is a cornerstone to a free society.
  • International – While TWUC advocacy is focused mainly on Canada, we are increasingly active internationally, working with colleague and partner organizations to encourage and protect professional creation.
  • Morals Clauses in Contracts – TWUC is advocating with the publishing sector to remove morals clauses from their contracts on the basis that these clauses unduly constrain authors, and can render them powerless to protect their work and incomes in the face of frivolous accusations of immoral or illegal behaviour.
  • Piracy – TWUC advocates for stronger laws and regulations to discourage and punish acts of illegal copying and sharing of created works.
  • Public Lending Right – TWUC continues to advocate for improvements to Canada’s Public Lending Right program, and joins with our international colleagues in encouraging the development of PLR systems across the globe.
  • Taxes for Writers - TWUC advocates for progressive tax policies that recognize the special nature of writers' incomes

TWUC’s advocacy is most effective as the collective voice of Canada’s professional authors. We are stronger together. If you are not already a member of TWUC and are working as a writer, consider joining the Union. If you wish to support TWUC’s advocacy outside of membership, consider donating to the Union