Immigration, Equity and Human Rights

SPR projects which have examined immigration, equity, human rights and discrimination include:
  • Study of Inclusive Housing in Canada. This $40,000 study involved a literature review and an expert panel, and examined the need for more inclusive housing for vulnerable populations in Canada -- seniors, veterans, refugees, other New Canadians, persons with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community and victims of family violence. Particular attention was paid to housing accessibility as a foundation for social inclusion (for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation).

  • Review of Legal Aid Ontario's Language Interpretation & Translation Services. This $50,000 project examined language services (80+ languages), serving tens of thousands of immigrants and refugees coming to Ontario. The review examined quality control, costs, service levels, protection from racial or nationality discrimination and satisfaction of clinic staff and agencies serving refugees and others. The research included a bilingual on-line survey of over 300 legal aid clinic staff and immigrant service agencies (for Legal Aid Ontario).

  • Bridge Training for New Canadian Professionals. This $100,000 project assessed lessons learned from Federal-Provincial programs providing training to new Canadians in over 100 professions, to aid labour markets and national skills development strategies. Bilingual web surveys reached several thousand stakeholders (colleges, universities, NGOs, employers, and program participants). As well, three full-day learning exchange workshops were conducted with universities and other training bodies to assess lessons learned regarding labour market integration (for the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration).

  • Review of the Newcomer's Guide to Canadian Housing. This evaluation involved web surveys of newcomers to Canada, staff of settlement agencies and housing help agencies, to assess information needs and satisfaction with the Guide. Workshops were also held in three Canadian cities with representatives of immigrant housing agencies. Following this evaluation, CMHC made sweeping changes to improve multilingual access to the Newcomer's Guide (for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation).

  • Review of the South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario (SALCO). This evaluation examined the demand for, and efficiency of, the clinic's services and its relationships with other legal aid clinics. The research involved surveys and interviews with community groups, clinics, lawyers and members of the judiciary. As a result of this review, SALCO obtained permanent funding as one of Ontario's nearly 100 legal aid clinics (for Legal Aid Ontario).

  • Evaluation of the Federal Contractors Program. This $200,000 evaluation to assess the impact of this program on employment equity for businesses and non-profit organizations with major ongoing contractual relationships with the federal government. The evaluation examined a variety of performance indicators and the business case for employment equity (for Human Resources Development Canada).

  • Mid-Term Review of the Implementation of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal Decision at Health Canada. This review involved an audit of Health Canada’s response to the Human Rights Tribunal Decisions of 1997, ordering 25 compliance measures for the removal of discrimination against visible minorities employed at Health Canada (measures encompassing training, selection processes and related steps). File reviews, interviews, analyses of employment data and focus groups were conducted, to assess the rate of change and to advise senior managers of the Department on progress made, need for improvements in the response, etc. (for Health Canada).

  • Evaluation of the Special Measures Initiatives Program. This $200,000 balanced-scorecard evaluation focused on success in affecting employment equity by examining program finances, departmental access and buy-in to the program, client satisfaction, and the impact of some 161 innovative projects on Federal Departments and agencies. Data collection included administrative information, financial data, focus groups and stakeholder consultations which were held throughout Canada. The evaluation resulted in a highly modified business relationship between Treasury Board and the Public Service Commission (for Treasury Board of Canada).

  • Downpayment Pay Equity Study. This project involved a survey to collect data on job classes and wages for over 30,000 women employed in the Ontario non-profit sector who were eligible for pay equity adjustments. Information was collected from 2,000 day care centres, nursing programs and other quasi-public programs. The survey achieved a response rate of 83% (for the Ontario Ministry of Labour).

  • Survey on Pay Equity In Predominantly Female Industries in Ontario. This study surveyed a sample of some 7,000 Ontario employers in sectors with predominantly female employees. Sectors included the leather goods industry, retail, business and personal services, child care, hotels and restaurants, and health (nursing homes and nursing services, pharmacies, clinics, laboratories). Male and female wage data were obtained for more than 30,000 job titles (for the Pay Equity Commission of Ontario, Ontario Ministry of Labour, jointly with Environics Research Group Ltd.).

SPR’s major work in the fields of equity and human rights has been supported by specialists such as Dr. Nan Weiner, who is one of Canada’s leading experts on equity and diversity.