Board Voice Society of BC releases SFU School of Public Policy Paper: “Building the Case for an Explicit Social Policy Framework in British Columbia”

June 2, 2016


For Immediate Release

Board Voice Society of BC releases SFU School of Public Policy Paper: “Building the Case for an Explicit Social Policy Framework in British Columbia”

Vancouver, BC – In work that extends the findings of “Making the Case: A Social Policy Framework for BC,” SFU Public Policy students Adam Finch, Ana Molina, Helen Chan and Jessica Knowles presented to a recent meeting of Board Voice Society of BC.  With this new report, Board Voice is renewing its call for the provincial government to develop a social policy framework for British Columbia.

A key finding of the report is that BC does not have an overall vision, set of guiding principles or integrated action strategies for social services and social development at the present time.  This is in sharp contrast to the detailed business plans the Province develops and articulates most precisely in its jobs plan.  The SFU team analyzed the mandate letters and service plans for 14 ministries responsible for social services in BC and found no indication they were linked in any way.

Board Voice Chair, Doug Hayman states, “This report is another building block in Board Voice’s continued call for a social policy framework for BC.”  He said, “The provincial government knows how to make cohesive policy frameworks,” pointing to the economic values in clear evidence throughout all the social ministry letters and plans.  “Now we need them to apply those same skills to social development.”  He added, “To build a strong province, the threads of social and economic policy must be woven together.”

For three years now, Board Voice has pressed Victoria for a comprehensive and integrated way of approaching poverty, homelessness, drug associated violence, and the other major social issues that continue to afflict BC families and communities.  Experience in other jurisdictions shows that complex social problems can yield to intentional, integrated government-led responses, particularly when municipalities, local social service agencies, business groups and citizens are involved.  Board Voice believes that ministries and resources pulling together with local communities will bring better social outcomes and better use of scarce resources.

The SFU report comes as Board Voice is gearing up its There is a Better Way project funded by the Vancouver Foundation through The Federation of BC Social Services.  The
will engage municipalities, businesses, community organizations and citizens in conversations about the kind of social services British Columbians need to thrive.


Board Voice is a provincial network that brings the voice of volunteer board members of community agencies to the provincial level with the goal of ensuring that all British Columbians have the opportunity to fulfill their potential and benefit from a thriving province.

 Doug Hayman


Board Voice Society of BC.



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