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Social Justice and Advocacy

The Social Justice and Advocacy Consultant, with the Social Justice and Advocacy Committee, coordinates and advances the public witness of our Diocese on issues of social and ecological justice. We seek to be faithful to God’s call to compassion and justice, live out our baptismal vows, and engage faithfully with the world.

To learn more or get involved, contact Elin Goulden, Social Justice & Advocacy Consultant, at egoulden@toronto.anglican.ca or 416-363-6021 (1-800-668-8932), ext. 240.

What’s new

Social Justice Vestry Motion 2021

The 2021 Social Justice Vestry Motion has been drafted by the Bishop’s Committee on Intercultural Ministry with the support of the Social Justice and Advocacy Committee and the approval of the College of Bishops.  Find the motion and backgrounder here.

Provincial Budget 2021

Read our Provincial Pre-Budget Submission here.

Housing Matters: Preventing and Addressing Homelessness in the Face of a COVID-19 Winter

The current pandemic has exacerbated the crisis of homelessness. People who are unhoused are already at higher risk due to underlying health conditions, while living on the streets or in a crowded shelter makes it difficult to comply with physical distancing and hygiene guidelines. In addition, new provincial legislation (Bill 184) gives landlords more power to evict tenants for falling behind on their rent, putting even more people at risk of homelessness just as cold weather is approaching.

In preparation for National Housing Day on November 22, the Social Justice & Advocacy Committee have prepared a toolkit for parishes to use to call on the provincial and municipal governments for immediate measures to prevent evictions and support people experiencing homelessness.

Calling for a Guaranteed Basic Income in Canada

This spring, the federal government established the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) to provide temporary income support to people who have lost their jobs as a result of COVID-19. These benefits have since been transitioned into a new Employment Insurance (EI) benefit.  However, not everyone is eligible for the CERB/EI benefits.  Calls are growing for a guaranteed basic income in Canada.

On Sunday, May 3, 2020, 43 Anglican and Lutheran bishops from across Canada (including all five bishops from our Diocese) signed a public letter to the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, calling for a Guaranteed Basic Income in Canada.  You are invited to contact your MP in support of this initiative.

Here is a template letter you may wish to use in writing your MP.

For more information about Basic Income:

Anglican Outreach Support Network

Angie Hocking at Church of the Redeemer is organizing a weekly Zoom conference call for those involved in front-line outreach programs in our Diocese.  To be added to the mailing list for this weekly call and other ways to connect with outreach coordinators in our Diocese at this time, please contact Elin Goulden.

Many parishes have contacted the Diocesan Office asking whether and how to continue outreach programs during COVID-19.  For guidance, please see the section under Outreach in the Red Stage Guidelines that were provided June 30, 2020, as well as the Guidelines on Indoor Food Services issued on November 4, 2020.   We urge all parishes to follow Public Health protocols for screening, hygiene, PPE and distancing when offering outreach services.

What we do

We facilitate communications between the diocesan and area bishops and various levels of government. We also educate, equip and support parishes and individual Anglicans in advocacy on social and ecological justice.

Priorities

Our ongoing social justice work is focused on three priority areas:

  1. poverty reduction
  2. affordable housing and homelessness
  3. environmental issues

Other areas of concern, where we support the work of other church ministries, include:

Some of our key activities include: