A network of more than 30 organizations representing a variety of local perspectives has unveiled its plan to help London, Ontario recover from the socio-economic toll of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The London Community Recovery Framework was made public on Wednesday in a report to the Strategic Priorities and Policy Committee next week.
The framework was developed by the London Community Recovery Network (LCRN), a group formed in response to the pandemic. From September to December 2020, the group identified 70 ideas for action to help London recover from the pandemic.
In March 2021, the LCRN began to develop a âcomprehensive approach with a horizon of 1 to 3 yearsâ which ultimately led to the framework in question.
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The framework sets out a vision for “a strong London, fully recovered from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and building a resilient, equitable and inclusive post-pandemic future”.
The document also provides focus areas that aim to deliver the vision over the next three years, as well as a long list of actions to determine London’s progress and a commitment to regularly report on recovery efforts.
The Focus Areas contain a number of issues made worse by the pandemic and much of the framework is about measuring London’s success in addressing them.
For domestic violence, the framework will measure success by the number of crisis and support appeals that Anova responds to each year, as well as the number of child abuse investigations launched by the Children’s Aid Society of London and Middlesex. .
Success in tackling homelessness will be measured by the number of people named in the London Homeless Individuals and Families Information System.
Mental health will be measured by analyzing self-reported data from Statistics Canada’s Canadian Community Health Survey, as well as the number of calls received by 211 Ontario regarding inquiries about mental health or addictions.
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The health of businesses in London will be judged by the number of business openings and closings, as reported by Statistics Canada. The unemployment rate will also be used to measure London’s success on the employment front.
Statistics Canada data will also be used to measure success in housing affordability and availability, with the framework showing the vacancy rate as well as the percentage of income required to rent a one-bedroom unit.
The number of hate crimes reported by police, according to Statistics Canada, will be used to measure success in tackling racism and oppression.
The city’s own record of London’s greenhouse gas emissions will be used to measure success in tackling climate change and achieving environmental stability.
Regarding the management and prevention of COVID-19, the executive will cite reports from the Middlesex-London Health Unit on the number of local cases and vaccination.
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One of the many contributors to the framework is Mike Moffatt, senior director of policy at the Smart Prosperity Institute, who also works as an assistant professor of business, economics and public policy at the Ivey Business School.
Moffatt says the framework is informed by trends seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as increasingly stringent climate policy and how the pandemic has had uneven effects on different groups.
Other trends include looking at how the pandemic is affecting people’s workplaces and how those impacts will continue after the pandemic.
âWe consider all of this, we consider what is going to happen that we are relatively sure, as well as some unknowns,â Moffatt said.
The executive earned praise from Moffatt, whose extensive public policy experience includes his role as an outside advisor in the creation of the Canada Child Benefit.
âIt’s easy to set vague aspirational goals, but it takes a step forward and provides those metrics which are an important form of accountabilityâ¦ Londoners can tell whether we are making progress or not,â Moffatt said.
“London should be proud that this is the first framework like this and I think other communities will use it as an example and watch London.”
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Mayor Ed Holder, who chaired CNRN, added that the framework represents the first of many steps.
“What this is meant to be is a long-term game to make sure London is ready for the recovery,” Holder told Global News.
âWe’ve had mayors across the country trying to figure out what we’re doing here and we’ll share that as we go. “
Holder’s fellow advisers will have their first chance to discuss the framework when the group of politicians meet as the Strategic Priorities and Policy Committee on Tuesday.
“Do I anticipate there will be questions?” Of course, âHolder said of next week’s meeting.
âBut I think, too, the board is going to say, ‘OK, we’ve given you that support so farâ¦ go ahead and keep reporting on the actual successes. “”
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