The Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities has launched a study of poverty reduction strategies.
The study focuses on improving the delivery of federal resources and services for the Canadian Poverty Reduction Strategy and is based on four main areas:
1) Housing: studying affordable housing, housing strategies, homelessness, and Housing First initiatives, and other new and or innovative approaches;
2) Education, Training and Employment: studying school based poverty reduction strategies, access to higher education, skills training/re-training, English as a Second Language/French as a Second Language (ESL/FSL), apprenticeship, financial literacy, and other new and or innovative approaches;
3) Government administered savings and entitlement programs: studying Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs), Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSPs), Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs), Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs), Canada Pension Plan (CPP), Old Age Security (OAS) and Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS), studying the Seniors Price Index and Consumer Price Index as they relate to these programs, and other new and or innovative approaches;
4) Neighbourhoods: studying urban planning, infrastructure building as a poverty reduction strategy, accessible and affordable transit, community support networks, and other new and or innovative approaches.
Within these areas the Committee emphasizes studying vulnerable communities and exploring the impact of gender on poverty and poverty reduction strategies in Canada.
Finally, the study pays close attention and focuses on innovation in poverty reduction through collaboration between levels of government (federal, provincial or territorial, and municipal), social innovation, private sector and non-profit initiatives, and social financing.
On Tuesday, November 29, 2016, it was agreed that the Committee extend the scope of its study of poverty reduction strategies by including mental health and that, in relation to mental health, vulnerable seniors and vulnerable youth, the Committee examine the delivery of the federal government’s mental health programs and services as they pertain to poverty reduction with a focus on innovative approaches.