The Social Enterprise Council of Canada supports Not In Our Name campaign


The Social Enterprise Council of Canada joins the global effort challenging's attempts to trademark the term “social enterprise” in the US, EU and Jamaica.

“Social enterprise is a term used by non-profits across Canada, and the world, to describe a business model that has a social mission at its core. It is not a term that any organisation should own or control,” said Anne Jamieson, founding member of the Social Enterprise Council of Canada (SECC) and Senior Manager of The Toronto Enterprise Fund (TEF).

Brendan Reimer, regional director for the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet) in Winnipeg, added that “social enterprises have existed as a community economic development tool for more than a century in Canada. They generate revenue for charitable activities, they strengthen community economies in every part of our country, and they often provide jobs for people who have barriers to employment. Social enterprise is not a term that the private sector, or any company, can just claim the rights over.  The idea of trademarking the term “social enterprise” is no different than trying to trademark other terms that are part of our every day language, such as “non profit” or “economic development”.

“We’re adding our voice to this international effort, asking to drop their trademark applications for the term “social enterprise”. should not be permitted to control a term that has been in common use in local communities, government, and the non-profit sector and with socially responsible businesses internationally for over 20 years!” commented David LePage, Program Manager of enp (

The SECC has hosted the bi-annual Canadian Conference on Social Enterprise since 2004; its membership and the conference participants reflect the strength, diversity and depth of the existing and growing social enterprise sector in Canada. As examples, The Toronto Enterprise Fund (TEF) in Toronto and the Enterprising Non-Profits Program (enp) have been engaged in building the non-profit social enterprise movement in Canada for over 15 years.

Find out more about the #notinourname campaign.  Why not join Social Enterprise UK?