Planning and Reporting

Multi-Year Action Plan for 2006-2009 for Implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act

Status of Women Canada


Table of Contents

General Information

Results-Based Action Plan 2006-2009

Summary of Expected Results

Awareness
Consultation
Communications
Coordination and Liaison
Funding and Program Delivery
Accountability

Communication Plan

Signatures

Questionnaire

Annexes

1:   Acronyms and Abbreviations
2:   Detailed Action Plan




General Information

Federal Department/
Agency

Status of  Women Canada
MacDonald Building
123 Slater, Street 10th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario
K1P 1H9
http://www.swc-cfc.gc.ca

Minister Responsible

The Honourable Beverley J. Oda, P.C. M.P.

Senior official responsible for the implementation of Part VII of the OLA

Florence Ievers
Co-ordinator
Status of Women Canada

Mandate of federal institution
The mandate of Status of Women Canada (SWC) is to "coordinate policy with respect to the status of women and administer related programs". The mandate is further guided by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and by Canada's adherence to the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women and its renewed commitment to implement the United Nations' Beijing Platform for Action (1995 and 2005).
National Coordinator responsible for implementation of Section 41
Valerie Lavergne
Policy and Planning Officer
Women's Program and Regional Operations Directorate
MacDonald Building
123 Slater Street, 10th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario
K1P 1H9
E-mail: valerie.lavergne@swc-cfc.gc.ca
Regional Coordinators

Lorraine Cameron, Regional Director
B.C./Yukon Region
Sinclair Centre
430 - 757 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
V6C 1A1
E-mail: lorraine.cameron@swc-cfc.gc.ca

Deborah Welch,  Regional Director
Prairies/NWT Region
Suite 1001, Highfield Place
10010 - 106 Street NW
Edmonton, Alberta
T5J 3L8
E-mail: deborah.welch@swc-cfc.gc.ca

Roda Muse, Regional Director
Ontario Region
MacDonald Building
123 Slater Street, 10th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario
K1P 1H9
E-mail: roda.muse@swc-cfc.gc.ca

Thérèse Lamartine, Regional Director
Quebec/Nunavut Region
1564 St. Denis Street
Montreal, Quebec
H2X 3K2
E-mail: therese.lamartine@swc-cfc.gc.ca

Marie-Paule Mattice, Regional Director
Atlantic Region
109 - 1045 Main Street
Moncton, New Brunswick
E1C 1H1
E-mail: marie-paule.mattice@swc-cfc.gc.ca

Period covered by the Plan
2006-2009


RESULTS-BASED ACTION PLAN IMPLEMENTATOIN OF SECTION 41 OF THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGES ACT 2006-2009

The commitment of the Government of Canada to gender equality has been reaffirmed through domestic and international instruments such as the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women as well as the United Nations Beijing Platform for Action.

Status of Women Canada (SWC) facilitates this commitment by playing three key roles as a knowledge broker on gender equality, a centre of expertise on gender equality issues and a catalyst for network building, connecting people, strengthening communities, among others. The mission of SWC is to promote gender equality and the full participation of all women in the economic, social, cultural and political life of Canada.

In fulfilling its mandate, SWC is committed to enhancing the vitality of official language minority communities, to assist in their development, and fostering the full recognition and use of both English and French in Canadian society. The agency has an important role in assisting Official Language minority women (OLMW) to become active players in the development of their communities, to participate actively in processes that shape their lives and contribute to the development of Canadian society at large.

SWC uses different mechanisms such as:  program delivery, capacity-building for gender-based analysis, communications and consultations, developing and disseminating policy research tools, facilitating engagement in public policy processes and others. SWC directorates continue to work with official language minority women's (OLMW's) organizations, collaborate with key stakeholders within the federal Public Service, other levels of governments and communities.  

The Action Plan for 2006-2009, in support of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act (OLA), will be implemented within the context of the broad mandate of SWC and will address the identified needs of OLMW as indicated in the SWC framework for Section 41.  Also, the Action Plan will build on the existing results in the six categories.

SWC looks forward to continued collaboration with its partners in pursuing these efforts.




Summary of Expected Results

Planning Environment

The Multi-Year Action Plan for Section 41 (2006-2009) will be implemented within the broad SWC mandate and in relation to its strategic outcomes. In implementing Section 41, SWC will take into consideration the current planning context, including internal and external factors. The current SWC planning environment includes:  

  • The recommendations of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Status of Women and the general response of the Government of Canada

  • The evaluation of the Women's Program and of the Agenda for Gender Equality (AGE) and the management response to the evaluation recommendations.

  • The cross-Canada consultations to engage stakeholders in a dialogue on gender equality, including SWC approach to advancing equality for women.

  • The recommendations of the Expert Panel on Accountability Mechanisms for Gender Equality

  • The renewal of the Women's Program terms and conditions in compliance with the Policy on Transfer Payments

  • The governance review currently under way within SWC.

Community Needs:

The Action Plan is also a tool to respond to the identified needs of OLMW. In implementing the Action Plan, the department will respond to these needs by building on the progress made so far, by addressing the gaps, thereby fulfilling its legislative obligations under the OLA.  The principal needs are:

  • Access to government programs, services, and activities

  • Financial, material and technical support to facilitate the work of OLMW's organizations

  • The need for greater participation in activities that promote women's equality

  • Opportunities for OLMW to engage in public policy processes

Activity Categories and Expected Results

The main activities in the Action Plan fall under the six categories identified for Section 41. The activities under each category are designed against expected results which, in turn, contribute to the SWC outcomes under Section 41, OLA:

Awareness:

  • In-house activities identified under this category include: provision of information, training and development, activities that foster the use of both Official Languages, regional/directorate/corporate initiatives that encourage linguistic duality, staff support for implementing the Action Plan for Section 41, OLA.

  • Some of the main expected results under this category include visible leadership and management support for Section 41, increased staff awareness about the legislation, knowledge of SWC obligations under the Act, increased exchange of information among directorates and greater integration of the Section 41 Action Plan in the corporate planning and reporting activities.

Consultation:

  • SWC will ensure that its consultation mechanisms and citizen engagement processes are fully bilingual, are available to and accessible by OLMW, that the target group is provided with opportunities to raise issues unique to official language minority communities (OLMC) and that SWC staff participate in OL minority activities.

  • As a result, we expect that the availability of timely and accurate information to staff will increase, SWC planning and reporting exercises will be supported by data pertaining to Section 41 and SWC staff are aware of new and emerging issues affecting the target group.

Communications

  • The current SWC communication mechanisms (website, research publications, invitation lists, etc) will be maintained and, where necessary, upgraded in an effort to ensure that OLMW remain up to date with regards to SWC activities at local, regional and national levels.  SWC will use Canadian Heritage's Bulletin 41-42 to communicate with partners and exchange best practices and lessons learned in implementing Section 41.

  • Some of the expected results under this category include improved communication between SWC and its partners, particularly OLMW, who will be informed of SWC programs, services and activities via different communication mechanisms.

Coordination and Liaison

  • The National as well as Regional Coordinators for Section 41 and Policy/Program officers responsible for OLA files will be provided the necessary support, including information, tools and training so as they are able to keep staff informed about the OLA and ensure that OL issues are integral to the operational and decision-making processes within SWC. The National Coordinator will continue to consult and liaise with different partners while regional coordinators will liaise with provincial/ territorial counterparts.

  • SWC expects to broaden and improve its existing partnership with different stakeholders at different levels and benefit from the best practices and lessons learned of others in enhancing its strategy to implement Section 41.

Funding and Program Delivery

  • The Women's Program of SWC will continue providing funding, technical assistance and strategic support to OLMW's organizations to develop and implement initiatives that address equality issues pertaining to the group. SWC will also maintain its partnership with PCH through the strategic investment of the Interdepartmental Partnership with the Official-Language Communities (IPOLC).

  • In delivering the Women's Program, SWC will seek to ensure sustained access of its grants and contributions to OLMW's organizations to carry out strategies that bring about positive and sustainable results.

Accountability

  • SWC is in the process of strengthening its current accountability mechanisms, including audit and evaluation functions. SWC will make the necessary efforts to integrate OLMW's issues in its accountability exercises.  

  • SWC expects to see heightened awareness of OLMW issues among accountability function teams and officers.

  • In its April 2006 assessment of the Management Accountability Framework (MAF) for SWC, Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) gave the agency its highest rating for two MAF indicators related to the implementation of official languages: language of work; and official languages for external service delivery. Further, SWC will follow-up on its June 2006 Senior Management Team review of its strategic planning process to discuss, among others, the need to ensure that Official Languages continues to be discussed at the annual corporate priority-setting meetings.



Communication Plan

Distribution List

  • SWC staff
  • Members of  the Committee of Deputy Ministers on Official Languages
  • Members of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Official Languages
  • Members of the Senate Standing Committee on Official Languages
  • Commissioner of Official Languages
  • Key Official Language Minority Community Organizations at national, regional and local levels

This report will be available, in downloadable format, on the SWC Web site.



Signatures




Valerie Lavergne
National Official Languages Section 41 Co-ordinator
Status of Women Canada
Telephone (613) 947-0932

Date




Florence Ievers
Co-ordinator
Status of Women Canada

Date




QUESTIONNAIRE:  What do you think of the Action Plan for 2006-2009?

General Comments:

Strong points:

Areas for improvement:

Suggestions:

Please return this form to:

Valerie Lavergne
National Official Languages Section 41 Co-ordinator
Status of Women Canada
MacDonald Building
123 Slater Street, 10th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario
K1P 1H9
Facsimile: (613) 947-0761

Annex 1

AGE
Agenda for Gender Equality
IPOLC
Interdepartmental Partnership with the Official-Language Communities
MAF
Management Accountability Framework
OL
Official Languages
OLA
Official Languages Act
OLMC 
Official Languages Minority Communities
OLMW 
Official Languages Minority Women
PCH
Canadian Heritage
SWC
Status of Women Canada
TBS
Treasury Board Secretariat
WP 
Women's Program



Annex 2

DETAILED ACTION PLAN

A. Awareness

(Training, information, orientation, awareness, communication and other activities carried out in-house in order to educate employees and/or senior managers of the federal department/agency about linguistic duality and the priority of OLMCs; senior manager performance contracts and recognition programs; taking the view of OLMCs into account during research, studies and investigations).

Main Expected Results

Main activities planned in order to achieve expected results

Indicators to measure results

Increased staff knowledge about Section 41, OLA, linguistic duality, legislative obligations of SWC and better understanding of the needs and priorities of OLMW.

Strong leadership and management support for effective implementation of Section 41, OLA.

Increased organizational capacity to implement Multi-Year Action Plan (2006-2009)

  • All in-house activities, including written materials, messages, events, other functions will be in compliance with the OLA and promote the bilingual character of Canada.

  • In-house activities to mark key equality dates will feature activities and guests that reflect the linguistic duality of Canadian society, including the diversity within OLMW.

  • Distribution of Bulletin 41-42 to staff as a sensitization tool

  • Training of new staff will include information on their responsibilities with respect to Section 41, OLA.

  • In-house information tools (such as the Intranet, internal newsletters and e-mails) regularly present information and activities pertaining to Section 41, OLA and OLMCs.

  • Management Team meetings include information sharing and discussions about current issues and priorities of OLMW.

  • Copies of PCH ‘Coordinators' Guide - Official Languages: Development of Communities and Linguistic Duality' will be made available to regional coordinators

  • Training for management team and staff on Bill S-3, an Act to amend the OLA (Promotion of English and French)

Enhanced and regular feature of linguistic duality in all SWC activities

Demonstrable knowledge, among staff and management, of the Multi-Year Action Plan for implementing Section 41 (2006-2009).

Increased exchange of information, sharing of experiences among directorates and regions with regards to SWC Action Plan for Section 41 (2006-2009).

Increased number of SWC staff who meet official language levels.

Recognition of best in-house practices in the implementation of the Multi-Year Action Plan.

Quality of Section 41 reports from regions and directorates with a focus on identified results.

 

B. Consultation

(Activities (e.g. committees, discussions, meetings) through which the department/agency consults the OLMCs and dialogues with them to identify their needs and priorities or to understand potential impacts on their development, activities (e.g. round tables, working groups) to explore possibilities for cooperation within the existing mandate of the department/agency or as part of developing a new program or new policy; participation in consultations with OLMCs coordinated by other government bodies; consultation of OLMCs by regional offices to determine their concerns and needs.

Main Expected Results

Main activities planned in order to achieve expected results

Indicators to measure results

Increased representation of OLMW in SWC consultations, public policy processes, policy research, funding and program delivery, gender based analysis capacity building and commemoration events of key equality dates.

Issues, needs and priorities of OLMW are known to staff and are addressed in SWC decision-making processes.

Input, expertise and representation from OLMW is actively sought for SWC initiatives, including domestic and international activities.

The needs of OLMW and organizations are systematically taken into consideration during strategic planning sessions. 

  • SWC will continue to communicate and interface with OLMCs as necessary.

  • SWC staff will attend community consultations in order to gather information that can be used in departmental decisions regarding Section 41.

  • SWC staff will attend activities organized by OLMW's organizations, where needs and issues are identified and discussed

  • Participation in strategic meetings organized by and for linguistic minority women's organizations.

  • Employees find out about activities arranged by OLMCs, share this information with other women's organizations and participate in some of these activities.

Increased communication with OLMW regarding SWC programs, activities, and their availability to and access by the group.

Increased awareness among SWC regional offices and directorates of new and emerging issues pertaining to OLMW as a result of on-going or new consultations with the group.

The extent of opportunities provided to OLMW to participate in policy processes, consultations, research and other activities organized by SWC.

Frequency/extent of communication initiated by OLMW with regards to SWC activities, including their representation in and contribution to different women's equality activities. 

C. Communications

(External communications activities to inform OLMCs about the activities, programs and policies of the department/agency and to promote the bilingual character of Canada, inclusion of OLMCs in all information and distribution lists, use of the department's agency's web site to communicate with OLMCs).

Main Expected Results

Main activities planned in order to achieve expected results

Indicators to measure results

OLMW receive up-to-date information on SWC's program, services and activities.

Mechanisms and tools to reach out to OLMW are part of the communication strategy of SWC.

Expanded participation by a greater diversity of OLMC women in equity issues.

Strengthening of ties with partners.

  • Bulletin 41-42 used to inform OLMW about SWC activities related to Section 41.

  • SWC mailing lists, invitations, information documents and other tools will continue to be accessible in both Official Languages.

  • SWC will maintain, update its web site to make wide range of information available on-line in both Official Languages.

  • Dissemination of relevant information to OLMW's organizations on SWC policies, programs, services, events, publications

  • Articles are submitted for inclusion in  Bulletin 41-42 to provide information on initiatives funded by the Women's Program (WP) and to inform OLMW about SWC programs, services and activities

  • Continuation of partnerships through active and effective communication.

Increase in number of OLMCs that appear on information and mailing lists.

Continued representation of OLMW in key activities organized by SWC or at the invitation of SWC.

Number of contacts initiated by OLMW with SWC offices across the country with regards to information received through different methods.

D. Coordination and Liaison

(Coordination activities (research, studies, meetings, etc) carried out by the department/agency itself along with other federal departments or other levels of government, participation in activities organized by other federal departments, other levels of government, etc; participation of official languages champions, national, and regional coordinators, etc. in various government forums) 

Main Expected Results

Main activities planned in order to achieve
expected results

Indicators to measure results

  • Greater collaboration with PCH with regards to IPOLC investment

  • Continued dialogue, information exchange and sharing of experiences with federal, provincial and other levels of government.

  • Greater opportunities to raise OLMW issues in government meetings, discussions and others.

  • Greater access to relevant information by SWC staff to work more effectively with OLMW's communities.
  • SWC National Coordinator, Section 41 will continue to work with PCH colleagues with regards to IPOLC funding to ensure achievement of stated objectives and identified results.

  • SWC national and regional coordinators for Section 41 will participate in OL learning events, meetings and others.

  • OL champion will continue to play a leadership role.

  • SWC will maintain contacts with federal partners, provincial/territorial bodies who work on Official Languages.

  • Strengthening of regional coordinator training and provision of resources to implement Section 41, OLA.

  • Provide copy of PCH Coordinators' Guide - Official Languages Development of Communities and Linguistic Duality to all regional coordinators.

  • Together with the national coordinator, Article 41, regional coordinator attends meeting organized by PHC with OLMCs.

  • Participation in regional meetings with other levels of government.

Increased information-sharing activities and varied partners.

Perception by partners of improved partnership with SWC on      Section 41, OLA.

Number and frequency of meetings and consultations attended by SWC staff where Section 41 or OLMW issues are raised and/or discussed.

Evidence of SWC strategic intervention regarding Section 41, OLAat government consultations and/or meetings at local, regional and national levels.

E. Funding and Program Delivery

[Implementation of the agency's programs and delivery of its services; funding, alone or in cooperation with other federal
departments/agencies, of OLMC projects; inclusion of the needs of OLMCs in the delivery of the agency's programs and services.]

Main Expected Results

Main activities planned in order to achieve expected results

Indicators to measure results

Enhanced organizational capacity among OLMW groups to organize and mobilize their membership to identify, assess and address their issues at local, regional and national levels.

OLMW's organizations develop strategic partnerships among themselves to address common challenges in the economic, social, political and legal spheres.

OLMW's organizations are better equipped with knowledge, skills and tools to engage in and influence public policy processes of different levels of government.

OLMW are well informed with regards to programs, services and activities provided to communities, organizations and individuals by different levels of government.

Increased participation by OLMW in initiatives on women's equality issues.

  • Continue to provide funding, technical assistance and strategic support for initiatives by OLMW's organizations at local, regional and national levels.

  • Maintain and enhance strategic funding in partnership with PCH through IPOLC for capacity building initiatives by OLMW's organizations.

  • Continue to target OLMW in specific initiatives by other women's organizations that address equality issues pertaining to women.

  • Maintain, renew or initiate contacts with local OLMW's organizations to identify strategies to address new and emerging issues.

  • Provide information on SWC-funded initiatives to OLMW's organizations.

  • Guaranteed access to programs and services, taking into account the diversity and geographic distribution of OLMCs.

  • Support for efforts and initiatives of ethnocultural communities through targeted funding, technical assistance and strategic advice.

  • Coordination and regular conference calls involving the regional team in order to identify the issues and the actions to be taken.

  • Verify the consultation reports prepared by SWC in 2005 as well as the 2005 WP evaluation report in order to identify recommendations pertaining to OLMC women and determine follow-up.

OLMW's organizations produce more cohesive and systematic analyses in their grant proposal of issues that affect their membership and constituency in regions.

Number of funded initiatives designed to address issues pertaining to OL minority women.

Number and quality of outputs produced by funded initiatives.

Evidence of outputs produced by funded initiatives contributing to outcomes identified under the SWC framework for the implementation of Section 41, OLA.

Evidence of incremental capacity to report on outcomes achieved through SWC-funded initiatives.

Number of official OLMW's organizations engaged in strategic partnership, capacity building, engagement in public policy processes and outreach to membership.

Number of funded initiatives that meet their objectives.

F.  Accountability

(Activities through which the agency integrates its work on the implementation of section 41 of the OLA with the department's/agency's planning and accountability mechanisms (e.g. report on plans and priorities, departmental performance report, departmental business plan, status report on implementation of section 41 of the OLA, etc.); internal audits and evaluations of programs and services; regular review of programs and services as well as policies by senior managers of the federal department/agency to ensure implementation of section 41 of the OLA.)

Main Expected Results

Main activities planned in order to achieve expected results

Indicators to measure results

Production of an annual report that clearly addresses all elements of the Action Plan 2006-2009 and the results achieved; performance indicators and evaluation mechanisms are more clearly identified.

Continued implementation of results-based management

SWC environmental scan, planning, reporting and other exercises integrate issues pertaining to implementation and outcome of Section 41. 

  • Development of more specific performance indicators and mechanisms.

  • Verify the consultation reports prepared by SWC in 2005 as well as the 2005 WP evaluation report in order to identify recommendations pertaining to OLMC women and determine follow-up.

Directorates will take into consideration SWC obligations under Section 41 in planning and reporting exercises.

Reports for OLA will indicate activities and results achieved in the implementation of Section 41.