The Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario will be travelling around the province talking to people in eleven communities.

The chart below shows the communities the Commission will be visiting, the date of their visit, and who you can contact for more information.

We will update this calendar as more information becomes available.


Community Consult Date Main Organizer Contact Info Consultation Plans
Windsor June 28 Adam VaseyPathways to Potential: multi-stakeholder Round Table on poverty reduction

Two sessions were held in Windsor.

  • a multi-stakeholder session.
  • a session exclusively for people with lived experience of poverty.

See the Windsor Star’s coverage of the consultations


London June 29 Ross Fair, Co-Chair

Child & Youth Network Ending Poverty Committee

Hamilton July 4 Tom CooperHamilton Roundtable on Poverty Reduction

  • A new report on the economic impact of social assistance on the local economy will be presented to Hamilton City Council earlier in the day
  • A public forum will be held at the Hamilton Convention Centre between 6:30-8:30 with the Commissioners.
  • This ‘Community Conversation’ is open to all those interested in having input on social assistance reform.
  • The agenda will include community presentations, an opportunity for dialogue and a question and answer session with the Commissioners.
  • The local cable TV broadcaster may televise portions of the forum.
Niagara July 5 Sarah Pennisi, Director

Niagara Prosperity Initiative

  • Three roundtables are being held by invitation for:
  1. People with lived experience of OW and ODSP.
  2. Front line staff of agencies, churches, and OW/ODSP.
  3. A mix of employers, agencies, educators, researchers, community developers, local politicians and the local Social Assistance Review Network (SARN)
  • SARN is also working to organize other, more widely accessible forums.
Kingston July 12 (tentative) Julia BryanKingston Community Roundtable on Poverty Reduction Network.

Peterborough July 13 Brenda Dales

Peterborough Poverty Reduction Network

  • A public round-table discussion was held with recipients of OW and ODSP on June 21 to get their input on issues and solutions.
  • The agenda for the July 13 consultation will include:
  • a meeting with business, labour and employment service representatives;
  • a multi-stakeholder meeting open to the public;
  • visits to community services such as Our Space Community Centre and the New Canadians Centre, to give the Commissioners an opportunity to talk to clients and staff.
Toronto July 14 Mary Micallef

Social Planning Toronto


  • SPT will host a forum inviting its 180 member organizations and 200+ individual members, as well as members of other networks.
  • The forum is at Holiday Inn Downtown from 9:30am-12noon.
  • Space is limited to 100 participants. Register early.
Toronto July 15 Amy CasipullaiOntario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants

Avvy Go

Metro Toronto Chinese & Southeast Asian Legal Clinic

  • OCASI and MTCSALC will host a roundtable discussion with the Commissioners on improving the lives of immigrants and racialized communities through social assistance reform.
  • The focus for participation is legal clinics and community-based organizations that work with immigrants and members of racialized communities receiving social assistance.
  • Space is limited. Indicate your interest by 12:00 noon, Mon July 11.
Thunder Bay July 20 and 21 Aaron ParkLakehead Social Planning Council

  • There will be two sessions:
  • one focused on hearing from front-line workers;
  • another focused on hearing from people with lived experience.
Peel July 18, 20, 21, 25 Adaoma PattersonPeel Region Poverty Reduction Strategy Committee

  • Mini-consultations will be held in advance of a large community forum on July 25. These are intended for those not able to make it to the July 25 session but would still like to provide input.
  • July 18: 6:30-8:30pm: Malton Neighbourhood Services, 3540 Morningstar Dr., Mississauga, Room 35B
  • July 20: Time tbc: East Mississauga Community Health Centre, 2555 Dixie Road, Unit 7, Mississauga
  • July 21: 10am-12noon: Caledon Community Services, 18 King Street East, Upper Level, Bolton
  • July 21: 12:30-2:00pm: Knight’s Table, 116 Kennedy Road South, Brampton
  • July 25: The Commissioners will spend the morning in the Acorn community in Mississauga meeting with residents and staff of Peel Youth Village, staff of Boys & Girls Club, members of the Acorn network, and residents of the Acorn community.
  • July 25 large forum: 1:00–4:00 pm at St. Leonard’s Place in Brampton, 1105 Queen Street East
  • Details and an agenda will be sent prior to the forum
  • Please confirm your attendance by July 20 to
Timmins July 26 Lynn Despatie, Interim CoordinatorCommittee for Cochrane District Social Planning Council

Ottawa July 27 Linda Lalonde

Ottawa Poverty Reduction Network

  • Organizing workshops with community members to inform them of consultations and discuss the questions in advance.
  • Commissioners will visit a diverse public housing community and have a discussion with residents.
  • Will also attend a drop-in program in a downtown church and hear about a municipally-funded project in which workers help people apply for ODSP. Media will be invited.
  • Lunch with the organizing committee to share reality of poverty in Ottawa.
  • In afternoon, will hold an invite-only consultation which will be closed to the media. Will have round-table facilitated discussions with note-takers and will go through the Discussion Paper’s themes and questions.
  • Dinner with community and business leaders
  • In evening, holding a public consultation with media present. It will include a panel of people with lived experience of poverty to address the Discussion Paper’s five themes. Then small group discussion and an open mike session.
  • Participants will be encouraged to complete their own workbooks or offer additional feedback online / by phone.


This information is updated as of July 12, 2011