COVID19 has exposed and increased local inequalities while opening the door to new policy approaches

We are looking for collaborators

While everyone is affected by COVID-19, certain communities across the region are experiencing a wider range and deeper degree of impact. As front line service providers work to meet existing needs, many more people not yet connected with services are facing impending financial and social precarity as the economic impacts of the pandemic unfold. Collectively our long term resilience will require ongoing efforts to monitor and respond to these inequalities.

An opening for responsive policy

COVID19 has exposed and increased economic and social inequalities while opening the door to new policy avenues. While front line service providers, essential workers and people with low incomes have been brought into the spotlight, these voices are absent or a subset of economic recovery task forces and policy tables. This project builds on regional recovery efforts by working to place the insight of those most impacted at the core of local recovery planning and policy making. 

There is an urgent need to:

  • identify the pressures and trends that make particularly impacted populations vulnerable, 
  • design recovery-oriented public policy that helps build resilience in these communities and
  • develop metrics for monitoring the COVID-19 recovery initiatives from these perspectives

Want to join us? Become a collaborator

A sector overstretched

Without question, the social sector responded quickly and effectively to meet community needs when COVID-19 brought massive disruptions to our region’s economy and social fabric. The social sector did this despite entering the crisis financially stretched by a lack of core funding. While relief is necessary short-term, for the sector to continue to serve those who need it most in the months and years to come, approaches to social sector funding must shift to support long-term resilience.

A Recovery Agenda: from Vulnerability to Resilience

With the above in mind, this project will work to elevate the voices of people and organizations in the region experiencing or facing economic and/or social inequalities. It will profile key challenges and policy priorities for the COVID recovery as informed by a broad cross-section of the social sector.

This project will:

  • Develop and define: 
    • A set of priority pressures and trends that make some communities particularly vulnerable; and, 
    • Community priorities for COVID-recovery policy adjustments needed to build resilience for those communities.
  • Strengthen networks of front-line non-profit organizations and support advocacy capacity;
  • Elevate the topic of particularly-impacted communities within public discussions of COVID recovery strategies;
  • Develop and deploy a network strategy to communicate policy needs to policy makers, and engage policy makers in that strategy.
  • Develop a profile of particularly-impacted communities and metrics to help front-line organizations and the media to analyse COVID-recovery policy options and evaluate their efficacy for aiding those communities.

Disseminate all of the above to community organizations and governments across Canada, directly and through media (including social media).

Calling all collaborators 

Now more than ever, consistent collaboration is key to our shared resilience. At the same time, we recognize that front-line workers and organizations are tapped out providing essential services.

We therefore invite collaborators to endorse the need for this project and to engage in the process at any level they have capacity for. 

Collaboration can include any of the following:

  • Sharing the name and logo of your organization or company 
  • Participating in a half hour interview around key vulnerabilities of the population you serve 
  • Submitting stories, data, survey responses, program reports or any other information that should be considered by this project 
  • Reviewing and providing feedback on a vulnerability Index (ongoing)
  • Reviewing and providing feedback on a draft set of policy options for recovery (ongoing)

Who are we looking for?

  • Organizations and businesses: Organizations, unions, businesses and other entities directly engaging with issues of housing, financial security, food security, employment, social isolation and related challenges
  • Individuals: People with lived experience, front line workers sharing their direct experience, and self-employed people particularly impacted by COVID-19

Interested? Sign up by clicking the button below.

Join Us


Community Social Planning Council values the participation of collaborators and we are seeking funding to provide honoraria. If you or your organization would like to contribute beyond the sharing of your name and logo but cannot at this stage due to a lack of honoraria, please tell us this in our sign-up form.

For more information, please contact Elysia Glover eglover@communitycouncil.ca  

Coming Soon: Local Precarity Indexes

We are in the process of identifying and compiling data to monitor precarity in the region. Indexes and their related data include:

Financial Precarity 

  • Availability of savings and liquid assets
  • Levels of different types of debt
  • Access to internet and technology 
  • A measure of discretionary income
  • Debt to discretionary income ratio
  • Unemployment rate (pre-COVID estimates)
  • And more. 

Social Precarity

  • Single-person households
  • Self-reported rates of poor or fair mental health
  • Access to internet and technology
  • Measures of having close friends and family
  • Unemployment rate (pre-COVID estimates)
  • And more.

Have data or a suggestion of regional data we should consider? Please email eglover@communitycouncil.ca with details. We are currently seeking partnerships to support this ongoing monitoring effort.