Speak. Share. Thrive.
On October 23, the Women’s Centre hosted a discussion forum for the second phase of the Alberta Government’s Social Policy Framework project called: “Speak. Share. Thrive.”
About 15 women attended the session which began with Women’s Centre staff member, Leah, presenting the process and the working paper developed by the Social Policy Project Team. Feedback from discussion groups throughout the province will be compiled to inform the creation of a framework for social policies in Alberta. The women attending our discussion forum shared their experiences and thoughts on the current social policies, programs and services provided by the government such as childcare, employment, income support and housing.
The focus of this phase of the project was on roles, responsibilities and strategies. Specific questions included:
- What are the roles and responsibilities of government, communities, families and private and the non-profit sectors?
- Who is best to deliver the services needed?
- What are possible strategic directions to achieve success?
The group split into two tables and spent over two hours discussing their answers.
As a session of all women, the lens focused on the concept of a village, and the need for accessible, affordable, flexible and quality childcare. Women identified the reasons why universal childcare is needed from employment and education, to care for other family members, and for respite time, particularly for single parents. By focusing on the well-being of the whole family and not just the child, the well-being of the entire community would benefit and all Albertans can thrive, truly showing the stated “value of diversity and inclusion” (Government of Alberta).
The next step taken by the Social Policy Framework team will be to complete a second round of data analysis and work on drafting the final framework, with the target of a January 2013 launch.
For more information visit the Social Policy Framework Website.