Transportation ACES (Access, Climate, Economic Security)

The Community Social Planning Council has been actively engaging with regional and international partners on just transitions. Within this initiative we have launched the Transportation ACES project to design a regionally focused climate equity framework for transportation decision making. We are interested in using this framework to maximize co-benefits in program planning decisions that lead to the best climate, accessibility and affordability outcomes.

If you are interested in participating in this project please contact Mikaila Montgomery at

Project Summary:

The Community Social Planning Council will work to create a framework and set of metrics for climate-friendly transportation equity decision making processes. Working with local experts and drawing from existing research, the CSPC will gather data sets and metrics to identify priorities and design a regionally focused climate equity framework for transportation. Existing climate and equity programs will be surveyed and potential program options will be explored. A decision making model will be designed to test our co-benefits assumptions using the climate and equity framework. Feasibility and affordability will be prioritized. The outcomes and program suggestions will be further tested for impact through an online survey and a public engagement event in Saanich.

Funders & Partners


Recognizing Essential Workers on May Day

May 1, International Workers Day, finds its origins in the 1886 Chicago Haymarket strike for the 8 hour day – something we take for granted today. This should give us pause. International Workers Day was established as a day to celebrate workers and their contributions, so that they are not taken for granted.

We all recognize the heroes of this crisis, from the grocery shelf stocker to the meat packing plant worker, who have become essential services and are putting their lives at risk to secure our food supply. Also the long term care workers, who are forced to rely on patching together multiple low paying part time jobs, putting themselves at greater risk. And the low paid temporary foreign workers doing essential work from long term care to farm or poultry plant jobs often with no sick leave, Medical Services Plan coverage, or adequate housing standards. The list goes on.

If we just celebrate these workers by clanging pots or calling them heroes and don’t protect them or give them decent incomes, are we not letting them down?

As we entered the pandemic 48% of Canadians were $200 away from insolvency and 1 in 4 of Greater Victoria’s two-parent families with two children had incomes less than the living wage. COVID has exposed those vulnerabilities in stark relief. Food banks are getting overwhelmed. As a parent with school aged children I was stunned by how much focus our school system was placing on getting meals to families as the crisis evolved. The Greater Victoria School District is providing approximately 10,000 meals weekly to needy families. Many of those in need are the working poor.

To really celebrate the the workers who are risking their lives for us every day, we need to re-imagine how we value work and what we consider to be decent working conditions.

In the recovery following the Black Plague labour shortages meant peasants were able to have more freedoms and better working conditions. COVID will be different. More likely we will see high unemployment, downward pressure on wages and for calls to ring out for austerity.

Lack of sick leave, homelessness, poor pay and working conditions undermine the health and welfare of us all. The impacts are being seen today on municipalities, school districts, local charities and volunteers who, even all together cannot fill the gaps. We will need strong government direction and policy change to ensure a COVID exit that is fair.

This crisis, has both exposed everyday heroes and the massive cracks in our system. This is the day to celebrate those everyday heroes by calling for real change so that they are properly recognized with living wages, sick leave, housing standards and decent working conditions.

Financial Inclusion for the Green Economy

Financial Inclusion for the Green Economy is an ongoing project that will lead to a full report released by the CSPC.

F.I.G.E. creates a safe space and participatory action research engaging women from a host of diverse communities in order to identify current and future barriers to financial inclusion in the green economy. Working in partnership with Victoria Community Micro- Lending, the Inclusion Project, Sewlutions and Synergy Enterprises, our goal is to advance gender equality through participatory action research. The final report will include levers for change, enabling the project to shift economic, political, and social power, towards increased equality. The project report will begin a local process for ensuring the inclusion of the green economy as we build it. For the priority of Planet, FIGE strengthens participation of disadvantaged women in the green future.

Ready to Work Employer Assessment Tool

Just as youth need to have the skills to find, get and keep a job, employers need the right skills to attract, select and retain youth employees. In both cases, this starts with preparation and continues throughout the employment relationship. Companies that have a corporate social responsibility (CSR) mandate see developing young people within their business as a key element to sustainability.

Download the tool