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Creating Peel’s Community Safety and Well-being Plan

How we engaged the community

People and organizations are working together to create Peel’s first Community Safety and Well-being Plan. The plan will drive collective action towards creating a safe, inclusive and connected community where all residents thrive. It will do this by ensuring access to services and supports that advance safety, connectedness and well-being.

Working together

Community safety and well-being impacts us all. The plan will be driven by the community. In 2018, over 25 organizations including emergency services, school boards, health, community and social service agencies and governments, began working together towards the creation of the plan.

Based on data, evidence and experience, the initial 4-year plan would focus on youth 12 to 24 years but will exclude no one.

The action areas:

Engaging residents

Residents shared their experiences, wisdom and ideas to inform the plan's direction. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, engagements were done virtually. Youth facilitators supported the engagements

Access the full Community Safety and Well-being community engagement report.

CSWB Plan community engagement was done in partnership with Taneja Consulting Inc. & S.M.D Consulting Inc.

Other information

"Sometimes accessing that kind of support (e.g., child services) we were raised to be skeptical of these institutions that could put your family unit in a vulnerable situation... kids don’t those institutions that could put harm on their family. I’d rather reach want to have to navigate out to community people or organizations."

"So in some cultures, including mine, let’s start with how a child is raised and spanking for us, it’s normal, it’s a norm. So even breaking it down to different levels of it. For some people, it might be different depending on where they are coming from. I’m not saying it’s right but we need to start with that definition to re-educate people into knowing what is right and what isn’t. So, we must go into different cultural groups. We have to help educate them around it first of all about what is family violence."

  • Co-create community conversations and awareness building strategies with the community, including faith leaders.
  • Break down silos by developing a coordinated system-level plan and respon
  • Co-create community conversations and awareness building strategies with the community, including faith leaders.
  • Break down silos by developing a coordinated system-level plan and response that includes the voices of the diverse communities in Peel to streamline points of entry and ease of access.
  • Collect Peel-based data to understand the realities and nuances of the role of women and how this impacts family violence in diverse communities.
  • Acknowledge and reflect cultural differences and intergenerational realities when viewing issues through a structural discrimination lens.
  • se that includes the voices of the diverse communities in Peel to streamline points of entry and ease of access.
  • Collect Peel-based data to understand the realities and nuances of the role of women and how this impacts family violence in diverse communities.
  • Acknowledge and reflect cultural differences and intergenerational realities when viewing issues through a structural discrimination lens.

"Accessibility – we need more of it. Only psychiatrists are covered by OHIP and they don’t do counselling."

"Certain communities and cultures have different things that impact them. In my culture, we don’t go there. It has to start with parents being more educated in mental health. There is a stigma that has to change. Having honest dialogue with that generation so that youth can feel safe."

"Spirituality can play a role in healing or understanding mental health and addiction I think that like with spirituality it helps you feel more positive and helps you feel connected and provide you with a sense of peace and like alignment."

  • Augment and increase peer to peer supports and ensure that there are more individuals with lived experience on professional mental health teams.
  • Increase and diversify staff representation, training and community partnerships with an intentional focus of increasing access for cultural and faith groups.
  • Develop a community-wide approach to mental health service delivery, which focuses on professionals but also on educating informal networks like parents and families.
  • Create initiatives that will reduce stigma in collaboration with the CSWB Plan Tables and youth and their families.
  • Support a campaign created for youth by youth on developing coping strategies and reducing stigma.
  • Develop an educational platform for service providers around mental health, addictions and dual diagnosis. The platform should include both national, provincial and local statistics, training on how to work with mental health and addictions, key local messaging, and resources.
  • Broaden, to both service users and providers, the understanding of trauma and stress and their interaction with mental health and addictions – especially the understanding of the experience and impact of intergenerational-trauma in racialized and Indigenous communities.

"I think the problem is that it’s not just about the training, it’s about changing the mindset, changing the culture of the organization itself and a number of organizations are not changing their cultures."

"Black families require culturally appropriate services that acknowledge that the system of racism exists, especially its impact on Black racialized, Indigenous communities."

  • Co-create with youth, families and service providers a strategy to develop more opportunities and safe spaces to speak about racism and discrimination with many cultures together.
  • Review and revise organizational and institutional policies, procedures and practices to align with and respond to the current Peel context.
  • Develop, in collaboration with partners, a regional diversity, equity and inclusion strategy utilizing an integrated anti-racism lens.
  • The Regional Municipality of Peel, where appropriate, begin the practice of collecting socio-demographic data as a key strategy for eliminating inequities and finding opportunities for improvement in the delivery of regional services, regional community-based funding partnerships, and public health.
  • The CSWB Plan, in collaboration with the System Leadership Table, holds itself and partner organizations accountable and articulates the consequences for not meeting milestones. Training is recognized as one activity on the diversity, equity and inclusion strategy continuum of activities needed to reduce systemic and structural discrimination.
  • Develop communication and public education strategies as central activities to reduce systemic/structural discrimination and racism.
  • Naming and acknowledging the 3 topic areas with equity-seeking groups and the broader community is the first step to addressing the issues.
  • Faith leaders have a role to play in helping our communities understand and address the issues. It matters if you are Muslim, Christian, Hindu etc.; all these aspects of people intersect and shape understanding and healing.
  • Without data, you cannot understand the problems.
  • "Nothing for us without us."
  • There is a need for broad-based communication strategies, public education and awareness building.
  • Lines of accountability and transparency must be articulated and shared with community stakeholders for this work to move forward.
  • Community engagement is on a continuum – authentic partnership requires a commitment of intentionality with the community at the centre.
  • Breaking down silos.
  • Taking the current climate with the pandemic into consideration, apply learnings from the innovation and efficiency of the COVID-19 Response Tables – many spoke about the ability to fill gaps within days that would have typically taken months.