Building a Foundation for Change: Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022
On this page
- Foreword from the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage & Multiculturalism
- Guiding principles
- Demonstrating Federal Leadership
- Way forward
- Empowering Communities
- Building Awareness and Changing Attitudes
- Ensuring a lasting impact
- Appendix: examples of ongoing initiatives that contribute to addressing racism and discrimination
Foreword from the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage & Multiculturalism
Diversity and inclusion are cornerstones of Canadian identity, a source of social and economic strength, and something of which all Canadians can be proud. However, even in an open and diverse society like ours, we know that there are still very real challenges. Building a Foundation for Change requires us to first acknowledge that there is a problem we need to address. We know that throughout our history, and even today, there are people and communities who face systemic racism and discrimination in our country. Recent events at home and abroad have also shown that no community is immune to the effects of hateful rhetoric. Whether it's racism and discrimination that is anti-Indigenous, Islamophobic, antisemitic, anti-Black, or homophobic, it is clear that the Government of Canada needs to do more to combat racism and discrimination in its various forms.
The experiences of racialized communities and Indigenous Peoples with racism and discrimination can also vary. Applying an intersectional lens reveals a complex picture of the way that different groups and individuals are excluded and harmed. The Government of Canada is committed to building a foundation for change by removing barriers and promoting a country where every person is able to fully participate and have an equal opportunity to succeed. Achieving this vision is not just a way to build a better country, it also addresses the human cost of racism and discrimination. Building a society that is free of racism requires ongoing commitment.
From October 2018 to March 2019, engagement sessions were held across the country to gather input from Canadians, especially those with lived experiences of racism and discrimination, in order to help inform the development of a new federal anti-racism strategy. The engagement process consisted of 22 in-person forums that welcomed approximately 600 people and 443 organizations. Sessions were held in partnership with community groups and Indigenous Peoples including First Nations, Métis and Inuit Peoples, referred to collectively as "Indigenous" throughout this Strategy but who are recognized, along with the Peoples they encompass, as having their own distinct experiences. Equally, all Canadians were invited to participate through an online poll and survey.
Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 is a $45 million investment that will take immediate steps in combatting racism and discrimination based on what was heard during the engagement process and supported by research. The Strategy will complement existing government efforts and programs aimed at eliminating inequities by focusing on three guiding principles: Demonstrating Federal Leadership, Empowering Communities, and Building Awareness & Changing Attitudes.
The Government of Canada recognizes that much work remains ahead to eliminate racism and discrimination. Through this strategy, we are taking action by Building a Foundation for Change. Together, we can work toward building a more inclusive and equitable country for all Canadians.
The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez,
Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism
Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 is guided by a vision of Canada where all Canadians benefit from equitable access to and participation in the economic, cultural, social and political spheres. It builds a foundation for long-term action by supporting three guiding principles:
- Demonstrating Federal Leadership
The Government of Canada must take a leading role addressing systemic racism and discrimination when found to exist within our federal institutions and in public policies, programs and services. Recognizing the need for government action to be coordinated, an Anti-Racism Secretariat will be established to lead work across government to coordinate federal action and identify and develop further areas for action through engagement with communities and Indigenous Peoples, stakeholders, and other levels of government.
- Empowering Communities
Indigenous Peoples and communities on the ground who have expertise in addressing various forms of racism and discrimination must be supported. Funding for projects and capacity building at the community level recognizes and enhances their expertise. It allows them to draw on their lived experiences to tailor initiatives to their particular circumstances.
- Building Awareness and Changing Attitudes
We need to increase awareness of the historical roots of racism and discrimination, and their impacts on our communities and Indigenous Peoples. Data and evidence are indispensable tools for identifying and addressing inequities, and enabling corrective action toward the elimination of racism and discrimination. We need to identify what works, and foster understanding of racism and discrimination and their impacts among all Canadians.
Demonstrating Federal Leadership
A Whole-of-Government Approach: The Anti-Racism Secretariat
Canadians understand that diversity is our strength. However, we know that even today there are people and communities who experience systemic racism and discrimination. Racialized communities and Indigenous peoples continue to face systemic barriers, notably in employment, justice, and social participation. Leadership requires taking proactive steps to remove these barriers that impose a limit on one's full potential.
Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019-2022 will invest $4.6 million to establish a new Anti-Racism Secretariat within the Department of Canadian Heritage that will be supported by existing inter-departmental committees and lead a whole-of-government approach in addressing racism. In addition to coordinating federal action and driving the overall strategy, the Secretariat will work with federal departments and agencies to address the effects of discrimination. This means leading federal institutions to identify and coordinate responsive initiatives, identify gaps, assist in developing new initiatives, and consider the impacts of new and existing policies, services and programs on communities and Indigenous Peoples.
The Secretariat will report publicly on the whole-of-government outcomes in addressing racism and discrimination. It will also contribute to work being undertaken by the Treasury Board Secretariat toward a more diverse and inclusive public service. Diversity helps us to better understand the needs of the people and communities we serve, which helps us build better programs and services that meet the needs of all Canadians.
The Government of Canada recognizes that to be successful it cannot act alone. Partnerships will be important. The Secretariat will liaise with provinces and territories and will continue to engage and work with non-government partners, Indigenous Peoples and communities to identify and develop further areas for action.
Building on the work we're doing
We're not starting from scratch. The Government of Canada has an ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion, and working towards the elimination of racism and discrimination. Action is already being taken across the federal government to help make a difference in the lives of Canadians by addressing systemic barriers and particular challenges that result from racism. This strategy builds on the work the Government of Canada is already doing to address the impacts of racism, and barriers faced by racialized communities, Indigenous Peoples and religious minorities. Ongoing funding of $4.5 billion, in addition to $8.5 billion since 2016, has been invested in these areas (see Appendix).
The following ongoing federal initiatives are some examples that aim at addressing a number of issues in Canadian society, including racism and discrimination, and/or have a focus on Indigenous Peoples, religious minorities or racialized communities:
- Commitment to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action
- Indigenous Languages Legislation
- Indigenous Child and Family Services
- Canada Child Benefit
- National Housing Strategy
- Canada's Poverty Reduction Strategy
- Canada's Commitment to the UN Decade for People of African Descent
- Public Service Action Plan for Wellness, Inclusion and Diversity
- Mental Health of Black Canadians Fund
- Canada's Digital Charter
- Security Infrastructure Program
- The Canada Centre for Community Engagement and Prevention of Violence
- Youth Employment Strategy
- Criminal Legal Aid
- Indigenous Justice Program
- Youth Justice Fund
- Indigenous Community Corrections Initiative
- On-Reserve Income Assistance Program
- Indigenous Skills and Employment Training Program
- Community Support, Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program
Engaging Communities and Indigenous Peoples
The cross-country engagement process provided valuable guidance in developing Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022. The engagement process confirmed that combatting racism and discrimination must be a priority for government and citizens alike. Going forward, we will continue to engage racialized communities, religious minority communities and Indigenous Peoples, and meaningfully involve them in decision-making related to proposed government actions.
Engaging Provinces and Territories
Provincial and territorial governments are important partners in the fight against racism and discrimination. The new Anti-Racism Secretariat will engage provinces and territories through existing federal-provincial-territorial networks. It will work to strengthen partnerships and share best practices. Through engagement with partners, we will work to identify emerging issues, encourage complementary actions and responses and identify areas for further collaboration.
Engaging other Government Departments
Engagement across departments was an important step in the development of Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022. Moving ahead, continued engagement across government will help increase understanding of how federal government policies and program can be better put to use to help fight racism and discrimination. Better coordination across government means better sharing of innovative approaches, the development and sharing of new data and identifying future areas for federal action.
Introducing the Anti-Racism Action Program
We know we need to support people and communities on the ground who have expertise in addressing various forms of racism and discrimination. Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 will invest $30 million in community-based projects that aim to address racism and discrimination.
As part of our strategy, a new Anti-Racism Action Program will be launched to provide funding support for local, regional and national initiatives and outcomes-based activities in key areas of intervention:
- Employment: reducing barriers to hiring, leadership training and workplace skills training, including encouraging partnerships between employers and employees in reducing barriers.
- Social Participation: promoting participation and reducing barriers in community sport, arts and culture and contributing to changing and creating a new public narrative.
- Justice: promoting interventions for youth at risk, including encouraging positive exchange of views and co-creation of solutions between communities, Indigenous Peoples and the criminal justice system.
These particular sectors of intervention were identified by research and confirmed by engagement participants as key areas within federal jurisdiction where racism and discrimination are most acutely experienced by Canadians.
Enhanced support for capacity building & promoting dialogue
Additional funding will be directed to the existing Community Support, Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program (CSMARI) to offer enhanced support for community capacity building and projects that promote diversity and inclusion more generally, as well as inter-community and interfaith dialogue.
Racism has different impacts on individuals, urban and rural communities and Canadian society as a whole, and a one-size-fits-all approach cannot work. Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 recognizes the expertise of community organizations and Indigenous Peoples, involving them in the design, development and delivery of projects to address the specific barriers they face. It allows for community and people-developed initiatives to target particular issues.
Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 will promote innovative and experimental funding approaches, like prizes and challenges that reward positive results. The continued existence of barriers caused by discrimination and racism calls for the examination of new or different approaches to achieving positive outcomes. This will encourage more people and organizations to join the conversation and contribute to real change.
Building Awareness and Changing Attitudes
Public education and awareness
Public education and awareness are essential in order to effectively work toward the elimination of racial discrimination and inequality. That is why Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 will invest $3.3 million for a National Public Education and Awareness Campaign based on regional and demographic needs that will be informed and developed with impacted communities and Indigenous Peoples. Its goal will be to increase public awareness and understanding, in both urban and rural areas, of the historical roots of racism and its different impacts on Indigenous Peoples, as well as racialized and religious minority communities.
Indigenous focused approach
As reiterated by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, no relationship is more important to Canada than the relationship with Indigenous Peoples. The Government of Canada is working together with Indigenous Peoples to build a nation-to-nation, Indigenous-Crown, government-to-government relationship – one based on respect, partnership and recognition of rights.
In addition, progress is currently being made to implement the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada to redress the legacy of residential schools and advance reconciliation.
The report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls issued 231 Calls for Justice directed at governments, institutions, social service providers and all Canadians. The Prime Minister committed to engaging with Indigenous governments, families and survivors, Indigenous womens' organizations, provinces and territories in developing a national action plan to respond to the report. The government understands that this process requires its own, full response. In the meantime, through Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019-2022, the Government of Canada is committed to continue working with Indigenous peoples to promote educational awareness on the history and experiences of Indigenous Peoples in Canada including the effects of colonialism and the results of the residential school system that remain misunderstood in many parts of the country. Furthermore, the Strategy recognizes the distinct experiences of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Peoples and those of the distinct peoples they encompass, empowering them to bring their own perspectives and to make decisions on what initiatives will best meet their needs.
Furthermore, the Secretariat will engage with Indigenous Peoples and partners to identify and develop further areas for action.
Addressing hate crimes & combatting online hate
According to Statistics Canada, police-reported hate crimes motivated by religion, race, or ethnicity, increased by 47% in year 2017. Through our engagement with communities and people with lived experiences, we heard that Black Canadians, Muslims, Asian and Jewish communities are some of the groups who experience hate crimes disproportionately. There are also growing national and international concerns around the spread of online hate speech. We have even seen its impacts here at home when six lives were lost and many others injured during a horrific shooting at a mosque in Quebec City.
Online platforms have increasingly become a tool to incite, publish and promote terrorism, violence and hatred. The March 2019 terror attack in Christchurch, New-Zeland was a harrowing reminder that we need to take coordinated action to prevent social media and other online platforms from being used in these ways. That is why Canada joined the Christchurch Call to Action – a global pledge to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online. Through the Christchurch Call, governments and online services providers are making voluntary, collective commitments to combat online hate.
Canada's Digital Charter that builds on these commitments was also enacted in May 2019. One of its fundamental principles is freedom from hate and violent extremism: Canadians can expect that digital platforms will not foster or disseminate hate, violent extremism or criminal content. The Charter highlights the Government of Canada's commitment to continuing its bilateral and multilateral efforts to work with digital industry including social media platforms to better address violent extremist and terrorist use of the Internet and online hate, in concert with other federal government efforts to address online harm.
Through the Anti-Racism Action Program in Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019-2022, an investment of $5 million will be made to support community-led digital and civic literacy programming to address online disinformation and hate speech. This reflects heightened concerns around online hate and the need to support local communities. This will be complemented by an additional investment of $0.9 million to support Public Safety Canada in developing a national framework and evidence-based guidelines to better respond to hate crimes, hate incidents and hate speech.
Data and evidence
Better, more precise, and more consistent tracking, collection and measurement of data is necessary for any effective anti-racism effort.
Through Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022, the Government of Canada will invest $6.2 million to increase reliable, usable and comparable data and evidence regarding racism and discrimination. This includes working with Statistics Canada and the Centre for Gender, Diversity and Inclusion Statistics, and enhancing the collection of disaggregated data that can be broken down by meaningful categories of race and/or ethno-cultural origins, and the analysis of this data.
The Strategy will also strengthen impact measurement and performance reporting. We will work to ensure that data is collected to measure how effective community programs and government initiatives are, and where the most impact is achieved.
Some of the investments that will be made through the Strategy to increase available data include oversampling Statistics Canada's 2020 General Social Survey – Social Identity. The General Social Survey gathers data on social trends, and monitors changes in living conditions and well-being. Oversampling allows a better breakdown of data on particular groups in certain regions of Canada.
Investments also include support to Statistics Canada's Expert Advisory Committee on Ethno-cultural and Immigration Statistics, and support to the Department of Justice's National Legal Problems Survey. The National Legal Problems Survey provides information on the number of Canadians who experience legal problems related to discrimination.
Ensuring a lasting impact
Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 contributes to the Government of Canada's vision to foster and promote an inclusive society where everyone is able to fully participate in the economic, cultural, social and political spheres.
The investments in the Strategy are building on current efforts to build long-term changes in supporting communities and for improved policies, initiatives and practices in our federal institutions. They are meant to be the first step of a longer-term commitment and a foundation for change to address racism and discrimination in Canada. These investments will help achieve measurable, evidence-based objectives focused on increasing equity of access and/or participation among people and communities most impacted by racism and discrimination.
Ultimately, the Strategy is expected to increase equity of access and participation among racialized communities, religious minorities and Indigenous Peoples to employment, justice and social participation, as well as increased public awareness of the barriers and challenges faced by racialized communities, religious minorities and Indigenous Peoples.
Results of Building a Foundation for Change: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022 and whole-of-government outcomes will be reported to Canadians on a yearly basis.
By demonstrating federal leadership, empowering communities, and building awareness and changing attitudes, the Government of Canada is taking action in building a foundation for change.
Words matter when it comes to promoting inclusion and eliminating discrimination. The following working definitions enable us to have a common understanding of a word or subject.
- Anti-Asian Racism
In Canada, anti-Asian racism refers to historical and ongoing discrimination, negative stereotyping, and injustice experienced by peoples of Asian descent, based on others’ assumptions about their ethnicity and nationality. Peoples of Asian descent are subjected to specific overt and subtle racist tropes and stereotypes at individual and systemic levels, which lead to their ongoing social, economic, political and cultural marginalization, disadvantage and unequal treatment. This includes perceptions of being a “Yellow Peril,” a “Perpetual Foreigner,” a “Model Minority,” “exotic,” or “mystic.” These stereotypes are rooted in Canada’s long history of racist and exclusionary laws, and often mask racism faced by peoples of Asian descent, while erasing their historical contributions to building Canada.
The term Asian encompasses a wide range of identities that the very term Asian can obscure. While all may experience being “otherized,” specific experiences of anti-Asian racism vary. Some are constantly being perceived to be a threat, some face gendered exotification and violence, some are more likely to be subjected to online hate and racist portrayals in the media, while others face Islamophobia and other forms of religious-based discrimination.Footnote 1
- Anti-Black racism
- Prejudice, attitudes, beliefs, stereotyping and discrimination that is directed at people of African descent and is rooted in their unique history and experience of enslavement. Anti-Black racism is deeply entrenched in Canadian institutions, policies and practices, such that anti-Black racism is either functionally normalized or rendered invisible to the larger white society. Anti-Black racism is manifested in the legacy of the current social, economic, and political marginalization of African Canadians in society such as the lack of opportunities, lower socio-economic status, higher unemployment, signiﬁcant poverty rates and overrepresentation in the criminal justice system.Footnote 2
- Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.Footnote 3
- A practice of domination, which involves the subjugation of one people to another. Settler colonialism — such as in the case of Canada — is the unique process where the colonizing population does not leave the territory, asserts ongoing sovereignty to the land, actively seeks to assimilate the Indigenous populations and extinguish their cultures, traditions and ties to the land.Footnote 4
- Disaggregated data
- In the context of race-based data, this means breaking down composite ("aggregate") categories such as "visible minority" into component parts, such as Black, Chinese, Arab etc.Footnote 5
- Treating someone unfairly by either imposing a burden on them, or denying them a privilege, benefit or opportunity enjoyed by others, because of their race, citizenship, family status, disability, sex or other personal characteristics.Footnote 6
- Fairness, impartiality, even-handedness. A distinct process of recognizing differences within groups of individuals, and using this understanding to achieve substantive equality in all aspects of a person's life.Footnote 7
- Acknowledges the ways in which people's lives are shaped by their multiple and overlapping identities and social locations, which, together, can produce a unique and distinct experience for that individual or group, for example, creating additional barriers or opportunities.Footnote 8
- Includes racism, stereotypes, prejudice, fear or acts of hostility directed towards individual Muslims or followers of Islam in general. In addition to individual acts of intolerance and racial proﬁling, Islamophobia can lead to viewing and treating Muslims as a greater security threat on an institutional, systemic and societal level.Footnote 9
- Race is a "social construct." This means that society forms ideas of race based on geographic, historical, political, economic, social and cultural factors, as well as physical traits, even though none of these can legitimately be used to classify groups of people.Footnote 10
- The process through which groups come to be socially constructed as races, based on characteristics such as ethnicity, language, economics, religion, culture, politics.Footnote 11
- Racism is any individual action, or institutional practice which treats people differently because of their colour or ethnicity. This distinction is often used to justify discrimination.Footnote 12
- Social participation
- Involvement in meaningful activities (social, cultural, physical, educational, recreational, etc.) that increase one's sense of belonging and well-being.
- Systemic or institutional racism
- Consists of patterns of behaviour, policies or practices that are part of the social or administrative structures of an organization, and which create or perpetuate a position of relative disadvantage for racialized persons. These appear neutral on the surface but, nevertheless, have an exclusionary impact on racialized persons.Footnote 13
Appendix: examples of ongoing initiatives that contribute to addressing racism and discrimination
This list is not comprehensive, but rather presents a sampling of Government Initiatives:
- National Action Plan to Respond to the Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls
The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls began in September 2016 with a mandate to examine and report on the systemic causes behind the violence that Indigenous women and girls experience. Its final report issued 231 Calls for Justice directed at governments, institutions, social service providers and all Canadians. The Prime Minister committed to engaging with Indigenous governments, families and survivors, Indigenous womens' organizations, provinces and territories in developing a national action plan to respond to the report.
- National Housing Strategy
Announced in 2017, the 10-year, $40 billion National Housing Strategy will address a range of housing needs, from shelters and community housing, to affordable rentals and homeownership, including $1.7 billion in funding for the Distinctions-based Indigenous Housing Strategies.
- First Nations Housing
Annual Government of Canada spending is approximately $319 million to support the housing needs of First Nations on-reserve.
- Criminal Legal Aid
Legal aid promotes fair legal proceedings and ensures access to justice for vulnerable persons, including economically disadvantaged people who are accused of serious and/or complex criminal offences and facing the likelihood of incarceration. This includes youth charged under the Youth Criminal Justice Act. Funding of $670.9 million from 2017–2018 to 2021–2022 supports access to criminal legal aid.
- Youth Justice Services Funding Program
The Government of Canada provides annual funding of $141.7 million to the provinces and territories to assist in the delivery of programs and services that target youth in conflict with the law, with a focus on diversion, rehabilitation and reintegration programming, all of which address the underlying socio-economic factors contributing to the poverty of vulnerable youth.
- Indigenous Courtwork Program
These services support fair, just, equitable and culturally relevant treatment and contribute to the critical priority of reducing the rate of incarceration amongst Indigenous Peoples in contact with the criminal justice system.
- Indigenous Justice Program
The Program contributes to decreasing over-representation of Indigenous peoples as victims, offenders and accused in the justice system. It provides culturally appropriate alternatives to the mainstream justice system that are sensitive to the living conditions in Indigenous communities, and mental health and addictions and other issues associated with intergenerational trauma. There are 197 community-based programs that serve 750 communities across Canada — in urban, rural, remote and northern communities.
- Addressing the Challenges Faced by Black Canadians
Recognizing the problem of Anti-Black Racism, in January 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that Canada officially recognized the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent that spans from 2015 to 2024. In recognizing the International Decade, the Government of Canada commits to a better future for Black Canadians. As part of its commitment to the International Decade, Budget 2018 provided funding of $19 million over 5 years, beginning in 2018-2019, to enhance local community supports for black youth and to develop research in support of more culturally focused mental health programs in Black Canadian communities. In addition, Budget 2019 announced funding of $25 million over 5 years starting in 2019–2020, for capital assistance and projects to build capacity in Canada's vibrant Black communities, as well as to support initiatives relating to the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent.
- Review of federal programs that assist Indigenous students wanting to pursue post-secondary education
Funding of $9 million over 3 years starting in 2019–2020 was provided for investments in initiatives to ensure that Indigenous students have better access to post-secondary education, and more support to ensure that they can succeed during their studies.
- Sectoral Initiatives Program
The Program provides $20 million per year to help industries identify, forecast and address employment and skills gaps, including attracting, integrating and retaining workers, including under-represented groups such as Indigenous people and new immigrants.
- Foreign Credential Recognition Program
The Program works with key partners to support internationally-trained individuals to fully participate in the Canadian labour market, investing approximately $21 million annually.
- Workforce Development Agreements
Workforce Development Agreements enable provinces and territories to provide employment assistance and skills training with the flexibility to respond to the diverse needs of their respective clients. These agreements include specific funding targeted for persons with disabilities, and are also used to support members of underrepresented groups such as Indigenous peoples, youth, older workers and newcomers to Canada. In addition to the $722 million provided annually to provinces and territories under the agreements, Budget 2017 added $900 million over a period of 6 years from 2017–2018 to 2022–2023.
- Social Finance Fund – Indigenous Growth Fund
In 2018 the Government of Canada announced it would make a $755 million investment over 10 years to set up a Social Finance Fund. The Fund will be managed by investment managers selected through a competitive selection process in the fall of 2019. Under this initiative a $50 million investment will be made in a new Indigenous Growth Fund.
- Improving Gender and Diversity Outcomes in Skills Programs
The Government provided $5 million over 5 years, starting in 2019–2020, to develop a strategy and improve capacity to better measure, monitor and address gender disparity and promote access of under-represented groups across skills programming.
- Opportunity for All: Canada's First Poverty Reduction Strategy
The Strategy aims to reduce and remove systemic barriers and promote equal opportunity for all Canadians. As part of the Strategy the government is investing $12.1 million over 5 years, and $1.5 million per year thereafter to address key gaps in poverty measurement in Canada. This funding will support initiatives that will contribute in addressing issues of systemic racism and discrimination.
- Union Training and Innovation Program
The UTIP (Union Training and Innovation) Program supports union-based apprenticeship training, innovation and enhanced partnerships in the Red Seal trades. The program provides $25 million annually through two streams of funding to strengthen training in the trades. Stream 1 supports investment in training equipment and Stream 2 provides support for innovative approaches to address barriers and challenges limiting apprenticeship outcomes for women, Indigenous peoples, newcomers, persons with disabilities and racialized persons to enter and succeed in the trades.
- Skilled Trades Awareness and Readiness Program
The Program aims to encourage Canadians including women, Indigenous peoples, newcomers, persons with disabilities and youth to explore and prepare for careers in the skilled trades. The program provides $46 million over 5 years and $10 million per year thereafter.
- Pathways to Education Canada
The Government renewed support for Pathways to Education Canada by providing $38 million over four years, starting in 2018–2019. With this renewed funding, Pathways will provide more vulnerable youth with the supports they need to succeed in school, including tutoring, career mentoring and financial help.
- Labour Market Development Agreements
Each year, the Government invests over $2 billion in agreements with provinces and territories so they can support Canadians with Employment Insurance-funded skills training and employment assistance. Budget 2016 announced an additional $125 million investment in these agreements for 2016–2017, to support skills training and help Canadians succeed in the labour market. Budget 2017 announced an additional $1.8 billion over 6 years, which started in 2017–18. In addition to Budget 2017 investment, the government also broadened eligibility for programs and services under the agreements, allowing even more Canadians, including under-represented groups such as persons with disabilities, women and Indigenous peoples, to access funded skills training and employment supports.
- Indigenous Skills and Employment Training Program
Funding of $2 billion over 5 years and $408.2 million per year ongoing has been provided for this new Program, that replaces the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy. Launched on April 1, 2019, the Program introduces distinction-based funding and labour market strategies through a network of 85 First Nations, Métis, Inuit and Urban/Non-affiliated Indigenous service delivery organizations. This will allow Indigenous organizations to provide a full suite of skills development and employment training to Indigenous people across Canada. It will also increase the ability of Indigenous service delivery organizations to support flexible long-term interventions due to 10-year funding agreements, resulting in better skills and employment outcomes for clients.
- Skills and Partnership Fund
The Fund, with $50 million per year in ongoing funding, is a demand-driven, partnership-based program that supports government priorities by funding projects that contribute to the skills development and training-to-employment of Indigenous workers through strategic partnerships. It helps address labour market shortages and economic opportunities by offering targeted training to Indigenous people, with the aim of increasing their participation in the labour market.
- Literacy and Essential Skills Program
Ongoing funding of $25 million per year helps adult Canadians improve their literacy and essential skills to better prepare for, get and keep a job. Funded projects primarily support the testing, replicating and scaling up of effective and innovative training models with particular attention being paid to vulnerable populations such as Indigenous people, newcomers, youth and official language minority communities.
- Youth Employment Strategy
The Government of Canada dedicated funding of $448.5 million over five years, starting in 2018–2019, for the Youth Employment Strategy. The Youth Employment Strategy is a horizontal initiative involving eleven federal departments and agencies. It is comprised of three program streams: Skills Link provides funding for employers and organizations to help youth facing barriers to employment develop the broad range of skills and knowledge need to participate in the current and future labour market; Career Focus provides funding for employers and organizations to design and deliver a range of activities that enable youth make more informed career decisions, develop their skills and benefit from work experiences; and, Canada Summer Jobs provides funding to help employers create quality summer work experiences for youth aged 15 to 30. The First Nations and Inuit Youth Employment Strategy supports initiatives through the Skills Link and Summer Work Experience programs to provide First Nations and Inuit youth with work experience, information about career options and opportunities to develop skills to help gain employment and develop careers.
- Visible Minority Newcomer Women Pilot
The government provided funding of $31.8 million over 3 years, starting in 2018-2019, to launch a three-year pilot to support programming for newcomer women who are also members of visible minorities.
- Immigration and Refugee Legal Aid
Immigration and refugee legal aid helps asylum seekers navigate the refugee-determination process, allowing those who are successful to integrate into Canadian society and the economy more quickly. Budget 2017 provided $11.5 million ongoing for immigration and refugee legal aid, with an additional $2.7 million to address pressures in 2017–2018 and 2018–2019. Budget 2018 provided a further $12.8 million for 2018–2019.
- On-Reserve Income Assistance
Budget 2018 invested $8.5 million over 2 years, beginning in 2018–2019, to work with First Nations to understand how to make the program more responsive to their needs and to help them better transition from income assistance to employment and education. Budget 2018 made a further investment of $78.4 million over 2 years, beginning in 2017–2018, for case management services to help individuals transition from income assistance to employment and education.
- Post-Secondary Student Support Program
Increased funding by $90 million over 2 years, beginning in 2017–2018, was dedicated to provide financial assistance to First Nation and eligible Inuit students enrolled in qualifying post-secondary programs to improve their employability.
- Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples
Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples assists Indigenous peoples living in, or transitioning to, urban centres. The government is providing $53 million each year for 5 years, beginning in 2017–2018.
Funding of $25 million over 5 years was provided beginning in 2017–2018 to assist Indigenous students with financial support to complete their education, become self-sufficient, contribute to the economy and give back to their communities.
- Family Violence Prevention Program
The government committed $33.6 million over 5 years and $8.3 million ongoing through the Family Violence Prevention Program to provide funding designed to ensure the safety and security of Indigenous women, children and families on reserve.
- Sport for Social Development in Indigenous Communities
The government invested $47.5 million over 5 years, beginning in 2018–2019, and $9.5 million per year ongoing, to expand the use of sport for social development in more than 300 Indigenous communities. This initiative is going to scale up a highly successful model developed by Right to Play that has led nearly 90% of participants to have a more positive attitude toward school and a greater sense of identity.
- Canadian Arts Presentation Fund
The Canada Arts Presentation Fund provides funds to professional arts presenters at arts festivals and performing arts series, and supports organizations. In 2018-2019, $4.1 million in funding was focused on those judged to be underserved (Indigenous, ethno-cultural, official language minority, youth, remote and rural communities, contemporary artistic disciplines and genres.
- Canadian Arts Training Fund
The Canada Arts Training Fund contributes to the development of Canadian creators and future cultural leaders of the Canadian arts sector by supporting their training. It directs its resources to organizations that provide training to Canadians – including youth, Indigenous Peoples and those from ethno-cultural communities, who received $1.4 million in funding in 2018-2019.
- Canada Cultural Spaces Fund
The Canada Cultural Spaces Fund seeks to improve the physical conditions for arts and heritage related to creation, presentation, preservation and exhibition, and prioritizes investments that will benefit underserved groups (including Indigenous communities, ethno-cultural populations and official language minority communities). These investments totaled $4.0 million in 2018–2019.
- Multiculturalism Program
Budget 2018 announced $23 million over 2 years, starting in 2018–2019, to increase funding for the Multiculturalism Program and to support cross-country consultations on a new national anti-racism approach. The Program, through its Community Support, Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program, provides grants and contributions to organizations for projects and events that promote intercultural/interfaith understanding, equal opportunity for individuals of all origins, and foster citizenship, citizen engagement and a healthy democracy. It undertakes public outreach and promotion activities that are designed and delivered to engage Canadians on multiculturalism issues. It receives $12 million per year in ongoing funding.
- Court Challenges Program
The Court Challenges Program, which receives $5 million per year of ongoing funding, provides financial support to Canadians to bring cases of national significance related to constitutional and quasi-constitutional official language rights and human rights before the courts.
- Reintegration Support for Indigenous Offenders
Funding of $65.2 million over 5 years was provided starting in 2017–2018, and $10.9 million per year ongoing thereafter to help previously incarcerated Indigenous peoples heal, rehabilitate and find employment.
- Crime Prevention Program
Through the Crime Prevention Program, which receives $53.9 million per year ongoing, the government works with stakeholders to prevent and reduce crime in populations and communities most at risk and to build resilience in the face of threats to safety and particularly to well-being. The Program includes the Communities at Risk: Security Infrastructure Program, which provides funding for security enhancements for not-for-profit community centres, provincial educational institutions and places of worship linked to communities at-risk of hate-motivated crime. The Infrastructure Program received $9 million over 5 years (infrastructure is provided as matching funding at 50%).
- Canada Centre for Community Engagement and Prevention of Violence
With $10 million per year in ongoing funding, the Canada Centre for Community Engagement and Prevention of Violence leads the Government of Canada's efforts to counter radicalization to violence. The Community Resilience Fund supports capacity building, evidence-based models and practices, and empowerment of local communities, including through initiatives designed to support youth-driven efforts to build resilience to hate and violent extremism.
- Cultural Competency and Trauma-informed Gender-based Violence Training
Budget 2017 allocated $2.4 million over 5 years and $0.6 million ongoing to develop and deliver cultural competency and trauma-informed gender-based violence training for all RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) members.
- National Youth Leadership Workshop
The RCMP's National Youth Leadership Workshop invites Indigenous youth to discuss social issues surrounding young people in their communities, with $0.3 million per year in ongoing funding.
- Centre for Gender, Diversity and Inclusion Statistics
Budget 2018 announced $6.7 million over 5 years, starting in 2018–2019, and $0.6 million per year ongoing, for the creation of a new Centre for Gender, Diversity and Inclusion Statistics. The Centre will maintain a public-facing data hub to support evidence-based policy development and decision-making.
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