Changing Public Services

Changing Public Services logo. A half starred shaped "net-like" design in green, blue and burgundyProject Rationale – Since the global financial crisis of 2008, Canadians have seen waves of changes in public services, including changes in public sector employment, and changing policies and governance approaches that affect the provision of public services and programs at the federal, provincial and municipal levels. The choices governments make now will have long-term effects in communities and regions across the country, and will change what, how and to whom public services are available in Canada. The decisions of one level of government may intensify the effects of changes made by other levels of government, and result in cascading effects. Choices about how and what public services to change will impact both historically marginalized and privileged social groups of women.


Objectives – This three-year project based at CRIAW will create a pan-Canadian Network, made up of four regional clusters, to meet the following overall objectives:

a)  identify and develop tools, connections, agreements, and strategies for tracking changes to public services and public sector employment;

b)  identify and use participatory tools to track and analyze the impacts of these changes on diverse groups of women over time (e.g. mapping, media analysis, storytelling);

c)  identify combined and cascading impacts as a result of municipal, provincial and federal changes; and

d)  collectively prioritize areas for further research and action

Each regional cluster (Atlantic, National Capital Region, Prairies, and BC) will focus on important question(s) to that region, and to the partners in that region. Each cluster will focus on one or more groups of women who may face unique barriers and opportunities (e.g., women with disabilities, immigrant women, women in rural areas, young women, Aboriginal women) in the face of changing public services. For example, one region might focus on the impacts of employment insurance changes on women in rural communities, while another region might focus on the impacts of housing policies and programs on young women.


Outcome – Within and across regions, we will develop tools and participatory processes to identify and track changing public services and their impacts. This will increase all women’s access to public services, and help ensure diverse women can influence and inform public services. From what we learn, we will develop future research and action projects. We will communicate and disseminate the findings of this work broadly through fact sheets, articles, presentations, social medias, and creative means.


Partners – The partners in this project are: Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women (CRIAW); Canadian Labour Congress (CLC); Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT); Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW); Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE): Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC); University of Guelph; University of Ottawa.


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