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Social Safety Nets and Policies to Protect Disadvantaged Groups: A Canadian Perspective. Michael J. Prince University of Victoria Canada. Outline . Introduction and Main Themes Concepts of Disadvantaged Groups Social Safety Nets: A Framework Current Policy Actions and Trends Conclusions.

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Social safety nets and policies to protect disadvantaged groups a canadian perspective l.jpg

Social Safety Nets and Policies to Protect Disadvantaged Groups:A Canadian Perspective

Michael J. Prince

University of Victoria

Canada


Outline l.jpg
Outline Groups:

  • Introduction and Main Themes

  • Concepts of Disadvantaged Groups

  • Social Safety Nets: A Framework

  • Current Policy Actions and Trends

  • Conclusions


Introduction l.jpg
Introduction Groups:

  • Three key policy issues:

  • Relationship between safety nets and disadvantaged groups

  • Links between social programs, capacity building, and economic development

  • Future role of social policy in a global and knowledge-based economy


Main themes l.jpg
Main Themes Groups:

  • Canada has a complex bundle of social programs and policies

  • Several formal commitments to assisting disadvantaged groups

  • Four types of social safety net policies

  • Recent return of an active social role by Canadian government

  • Capacity building and issues of disadvantage on economic and social policy agendas


Disadvantaged groups l.jpg
Disadvantaged Groups Groups:

  • Shared characteristics and circumstances

  • In past, present and or foreseeable future

  • Distinct from others in society

  • Characteristics/circumstances considered unfair and significant in relation to mainstream population

  • A political process to recognition and definition of groups seen as disadvantaged


Concepts of disadvantaged groups canadian sources l.jpg
Concepts of Disadvantaged Groups: Canadian Sources Groups:

  • Constitution and Charter of Rights, 1982

  • Employment Equity Act, 1986 and 1995

  • Social Union Framework Agreement, 1999

  • Human Resources Development Canada

  • Canadian Health Research on Vulnerable Populations, 2002

  • Canada’s Innovation Strategy, 2002


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Social Safety Nets in Canada: Four Types Groups:

  • 1. Social Assistance

  • 2. Economic Inclusion

  • 3. Health and Social Security

  • 4. Human Capital Investment


Social assistance l.jpg
Social Assistance Groups:

  • Programs of “last resort”

  • Means-tested or needs-tested

  • Minimal level of support

  • Client groups have no attachment to labour force or have non-standard work history

  • Main recent initiative for low-income families with children


Economic inclusion l.jpg
Economic Inclusion Groups:

  • Focus on groups excluded from or marginalized in the paid labour force

  • Supports may include literacy, skill development and training, apprenticeships, wage subsidies, “workfare”

  • Recent initiatives for youth, persons with disabilities, Aboriginal peoples, single mothers, visible minorities


Health and social security l.jpg
Health and Social Security Groups:

  • Mainstream programs of welfare state

  • Social insurance and general access benefits

  • Support based on adequacy and income replacement

  • Client groups usually have or had a firm attachment to labour force

  • Recent measures focus on early childhood, Aboriginal communities, farmers


Human capital investment l.jpg
Human Capital Investment Groups:

  • Programs for those employed in good positions or with good prospects

  • Post-secondary access programs, funding for government research councils and universities

  • Goal of a well-educated, highly skilled, flexible workforce

  • Main recent initiatives on enhanced expenditure and tax support for higher education and learning


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Conclusions Groups:

  • A distinctive policy discourse on disadvantaged groups

  • Growing interest in capacity building

  • Increasing attention to disadvantaged groups: early years evidence, labour skill shortages, Charter rights

  • Economic development and social development interconnected

  • Continued social role by governments


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