Comité des services communautaires et de protection
2 June 2008/le 2 juin 2008
Deputy City Manager/Directeur municipal adjoint
Community and Protective Services/Services communautaires et de protection
That the Community and Protective Services Committee receive this report for information.
RECOMMANDATION DU RAPPORT
Que le Comité des services communautaires et de protection reçoive ce rapport à titre d'information.
The Community and Protective Services Department adopted a Three-Year Strategic Plan from 2005 to 2007 and created a new service delivery philosophy called “How Can We Help?” to support the work undertaken within the plan. Within that framework, twelve initiatives were identified as the priority areas for focus:
· Emergency Management Program
· Neighbourhood Planning
· Working City
· Access to Culture
· Children and Youth Agenda
· Community and Cultural Investment
· Building a Learning and Literate Community
· Physical Activity Strategy
· Public Education: Safety and Safe Behaviour
· Staff Investment Strategy
· Housing Agenda
In recognition that the larger community has a role in working with the City of Ottawa to promote quality of life for the citizens, an integrated and collaborative approach was endorsed as the best way of working towards common goals. The strategic objectives of the plan and the initiatives were to improve existing working relationships and to forge new partnerships, to build networks to improve communication among stakeholders, and to increase the community capacity to respond to changing citizen needs and emerging issues. The work undertaken in the initiatives was also intended to improve opportunities for coordination within City departments and branches and collaboration with external stakeholders to improve services to citizens of Ottawa.
The overall impact of the CPS Strategic Plan and the activities conducted in the initiatives was significant at the level of the City of Ottawa and at the community level. City staff employed a more holistic approach to identify issues and solutions through improved opportunities for collaboration across branches and departments. The creation of multi-disciplinary teams encouraged staff development, mentoring and succession planning. Operational enhancements in program/service delivery were a result of the initiatives emphasis on creating a client-focused service.
The CPS Strategic Plan contributed to enhanced quantity and quality of community engagement. Each of the initiatives involved extensive consultations with staff, residents and community partners.
Throughout the course of the three-year term, more than 900 community consultation sessions or meeting were held involving approximately 6000 residents and 700 community experts during the development and implementation of the initiatives.
Through the twelve priority initiatives, CPS leveraged more than $9 million dollars in Federal funding, over $2 million dollars in Provincial funding, over $2 million dollars in other partner funding and approximately $ 100 thousand dollars of direct “in kind” services.
New levels of confidence and trust were gained among the stakeholders and a great deal of enthusiasm and vested interest was generated around the initiatives. All of these combined factors supported the success of the initiatives.
Les Services communautaires et de protection ont adopté un plan stratégique triennal pour la période 2005-2007 et une nouvelle philosophie de prestation de services, appelée « Comment pouvons-nous aider? », pour soutenir les activités prévues dans le plan. À l'intérieur de ce cadre, 12 initiatives ont été ont été désignées prioritaires :
· Programme de gestion des situations d'urgence
· Planification de voisinage
· Ville au travail
· Accès à la culture
· Plan d'action pour les enfants et les jeunes
· Investissements communautaires et culturels
· Communauté apprenante et alphabétisée
· Stratégie de promotion de l'activité physique
· Sensibilisation du public : sécurité et comportements sécuritaires
· Stratégie d'investissement dans le personnel
· Plan d'action pour le logement
Compte tenu du rôle que la communauté dans son ensemble a à jouer avec la Ville d'Ottawa pour améliorer la qualité de vie des citoyens, une approche intégrée et concertée a été retenue comme le meilleur moyen de travailler à atteindre des buts communs. Les objectifs stratégiques du Plan et les initiatives visent à améliorer les relations de travail existantes et à établir de nouveaux partenariats, à développer des réseaux pour renforcer la communication entre les parties prenantes et à accroître la capacité communautaire de répondre aux besoins changeants des citoyens et aux enjeux nouveaux. Le travail entrepris dans le cadre des initiatives visait également à optimiser les occasions de coordination au sein des directions et des services de l'administration municipale et avec les intervenants externes en vue d'améliorer les services aux citoyens d'Ottawa.
L'effet d'ensemble du Plan stratégique des SCP et des activités menées dans le cadre des initiatives a été considérable tant au niveau de l'administration municipale qu'à l'échelle communautaire. Le personnel municipal a adopté une approche plus holistique pour dégager les enjeux et les solutions grâce à de meilleures possibilités de collaboration entre les directions et services de l'administration municipale. La création d'équipes multidisciplinaires a favorisé le perfectionnement du personnel, le mentorat et la planification de la relève. L'importance accordée dans les initiatives à la mise en place d'un service axé sur la clientèle a entraîné des améliorations opérationnelles au chapitre de la prestation des programmes et services.
Le Plan stratégique des SCP a contribué à accroître le nombre et la qualité des engagements communautaires. Chacune des initiatives a comporté des consultations exhaustives avec le personnel municipal, les résidents et les partenaires communautaires.
Plus de 900 séances ou réunions de consultation communautaire, échelonnées tout au long de la période de trois ans et auxquelles ont participé environ 6 000 résidents et 700 spécialistes des affaires communautaires, ont eu lieu pendant l'élaboration et la mise en œuvre des initiatives.
Les SCP ont réussi à obtenir, à la faveur de ces 12 initiatives prioritaires, plus de 9 millions de dollars en fonds fédéraux, plus de 2 millions en fonds provinciaux et plus de 2 millions d'autres partenaires, ainsi que des services en nature d'une valeur d'environ 100 000 $.
Les parties prenantes ont acquis une assurance et une confiance nouvelles, et les initiatives ont suscité beaucoup d'enthousiasme et d'intérêt. Tous ces facteurs conjugués ont contribué à la réussite des initiatives.
The creation of the newly amalgamated City of Ottawa in 2001 brought 11 area municipalities together to be governed under one governmental structure. At that time, population projections indicated that Ottawa would continue to grow over the next 20 years and demand for municipal services would, therefore, also increase. Coordinated strategic planning for this level of growth, change, opportunities and challenges was essential to preserve the qualities of the City which citizens valued.
The Ottawa 20/20 initiative began with a broad scale consultation process to engage citizens to develop a shared vision for the new City of Ottawa. The result of the feedback was a new approach to city building to address growth and five Growth Management Plans were developed to guide the development of the physical and social infrastructure for the City of Ottawa to the year 2020.
In May 2004, a new City of Ottawa organizational structure was approved which resulted in the establishment of the Community and Protective Services Department (CPS). The newly created department combined many of the services that directly provide services and programs to the citizens of Ottawa. The Community and Protective Services Department was comprised of eleven branches with diverse programs and service areas. The branches included: By-law and Regulatory Services, Fire Services, Paramedic Service, Public Health, Parks and Recreation, Employment and Financial Assistance, Housing, Long Term Care, Cultural Services and Community Funding, Office of Emergency Management and the Ottawa Public Library.
Despite the variation in branch mandates and objectives, the common purpose of CPS is to deliver client focused services, which maintain or enhance the quality of life for citizens and to assist communities to become more resilient and able to identify and resolve issues. The Deputy City Manger of the new department engaged the staff of the various branches to define the common vision to unite the branches in providing quality programs and services to the citizens. The “How Can We Help?” vision was introduced and adopted as the CPS service delivery philosophy.
In 2005, the Community and Protective Services Department Strategic Framework was created to guide the work priorities for a three-year term. The framework was implemented to ensure the work begun in Ottawa 20/20 would continue and be incorporated into the CPS planning activities. Three CPS service delivery approaches were identified to support the vision of “ How Can We Help?” and to focus on quality client service:
· Continuous Service Improvement
Within the context of the Strategic Framework, the vision and the service delivery approaches twelve priority initiatives were chosen for CPS to be implemented from 2005 to 2007. The chosen initiatives were supported through the alignment of resources and a project management approach to ensure successful outcomes and greatest impact.
The Community and Protective Services Department’s “How Can We Help?” three-year strategic plan was approved b Council at its meeting of September 28, 2005.
12 Priority Initiatives
The Emergency Management Program is responsible for addressing potential risks and planning for large-scale emergencies and disasters for the City of Ottawa. The initiative included the “Are You Ready?” public awareness campaign to promote community awareness of how to be prepared. The Disaster Psychosocial Plan was developed to address negative psychosocial impacts for residents and responders as a result of a large-scale traumatic event. Consolidated efforts in coordination and planning gave rise to the Emergency Social Services Team that combines CPS branch efforts in providing a range of products and services to persons affected by a disaster. Other accomplishments include:
· Implemented a City wide “Are You Ready?” public awareness campaign on emergency
preparedness, providing educational materials in five languages resulting in improved
level of access for citizens.
· Acquired a Mobile Emergency Treatment and Rehabilitation Unit available for
deployment in large-scale emergencies.
· Seventy internal staff and external partners attended a Basic Emergency Management
· 2007 City Council approved Municipal Evacuation Plan
The Community and Protective Services Department orchestrated the first city wide place-based customized approach to address the strategic infrastructure and service needs of a community. The three City departments of Community and Protective Services, Public Works and Services and Transit and the Environment joined together to collaborate in the innovative neighbourhood planning process. Partnerships were formed with research-based institutions to determine the best methods to engage the community. Two pilot neighbourhoods were chosen for the initiative and members from the communities were invited to participate in working collaboratively and planning for their community. Opportunities for changes and improvements in the community were identified. Neighbourhood Planning provides a best practice process for integrated infrastructure, social and service planning to resolve issues at the community level, which may be applied in other scenarios. The NPI:
· Held more than 40 meetings with the Hintonburg and Vars communities to initiate the collaborative planning process to build better communities.
· Analysed more than 1500 individual surveys identifying areas for change.
· Held a competition for local artists to provide art along Wellington Street.
· Developed neighbourhood plans for Hintonburg and Vars in fall 2008.
The goal of this initiative was to assist Ontario Works participants in securing sustainable employment. A number of research projects, employment interventions and marketing tools were created to further this objective. Service enhancements within the Employment and Financial Assistance Branch had a direct impact on the number of clients who secured and maintained employment and who reported employment earnings from 2005-2007.
· Contributed to the increase of more than 3000 families who became financially self sufficient from 2005-2007.
· Contributed to the increased average monthly employment earnings declared by families.
· Identified 60 paid and unpaid employment opportunities within the City of Ottawa available to Ontario Works participants.
The cultural experience for the City of Ottawa was enhanced through increased avenues of funding to stabilize the community cultural infrastructure. Formalized agreements were negotiated with partners to facilitate the development of cultural facilities, such as the Shenkman Art Centre and the Irving Greenberg Theatre. Collaboration with the National Capital Commission and the City of Gatineau brought about the on-line calendar of local cultural events. The work of this initiative has made the cultural infrastructure in Ottawa more sustainable and ready for future growth through:
· $6.3 million invested in operating and capital funding for local museums
· $2.5 million invested in operating of local arts, festivals, fairs and special events
· Received a $1 million donation for the Shenkman Arts Centre in the east end of the City
Children and Youth Agenda
The Children and Youth Agenda initiative included a partnership with United Way/Centraide Ottawa to conduct an engagement strategy to create a community led vision and framework to determine the best supports for children and youth in Ottawa. Evidence-based research was gathered to determine the critical influencing factors for a holistic approach to healthy development. Several examples of collaborative activities emanated from the initiative.
· With the assistance of many service providers, reached out to hear from over one thousand children, youth and parents with respect to what was important to them in terms of healthy child and youth development.
· Created a Framework for Promoting Healthy Child and Youth Development which, with its four key elements, influencing factors and priority outcomes, creates a common language among child and youth service providers to help focus the community’s collective and collaborative efforts.
· Electronic service inventory created to help staff provide more holistic service
A Community Funding Framework was developed to address all funding mechanisms and to align funding allocations to departmental and corporate priorities. Service agreements were negotiated and enhanced to include a risk assessment criteria and to determine the appropriate length of the agreement (from 1-3 years). Two annual community service provider recognition events were held to formally recognize the contribution made by community organizations that received Community Project Funding. The CI initiative also:
· Negotiated Service agreements with community organizations to clearly identify the purpose of funding, roles and responsibilities, terms and conditions and reporting requirements.
· Delivered information sessions on the Community Project Funding application process to provide organizations with a better understanding of the purpose of community funding and to simplify the application process.
· Development of a Policy Framework to improve communication and enhance collaboration between the Coalition of Community Houses and the Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centers with the goal of improved customer service.
The Ottawa Public Library (OPL) initiative had a focus on building partnerships to improve the library experience of newcomers, persons with disabilities and adult literacy learners. Some examples of the activities of this initiative are: the successful delivery of homework help sessions to high school students, computer literacy courses, availability of Canadian National Institute for the Blind materials at the OPL (through a partnership with VISUNET), and settlement services offered by newcomer Information Officers at the OPL. Several noteworthy highlights include:
· Provided a minimum of 100 computer literacy courses annually.
· Implemented assistive technology at 10 OPL sites.
· Established significant partnerships with the Ottawa Community Coalition for Literacy, 5 Ottawa-based settlement agencies, Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Settlement Workers in Schools Program, other Ontario public libraries, and the Canadian National Institute for the Blind.
The Physical Activity Strategy placed emphasis on the benefits of prevention of disease and injury through exercise, nutrition and recreation programs to improve self-esteem. A variety of activities were initiated through collaboration with partners interested in promoting healthy lifestyle. Some examples of these service integration opportunities are: the Healthy Heart Hockey awareness campaign was introduced in Ottawa to prevent heart attacks among recreational hockey players and the St-Laurent Friendly Corner which promotes physical activities for seniors in a safe and social environment, and;
· Implemented “Try it” Campaign for which 80% of users registered for programs after trying activity for free.
· Outfitted more than 460 children with skates and helmets to help them try a new activity in skating classes through the I ♥ 2 Skate program.
· Reached more than 1100 homebound Seniors citywide with the “Home Support Exercise Program”
This initiative combined the efforts of Ottawa Fire Services, Ottawa Paramedic Services and Ottawa Public Health to increase the level of public education around the safety issues of school-aged children. The collaboration of the three CPS branches demonstrated in the work of this initiative is an example of the benefits and success of increased integration and coordination about safety messages to specific populations. Targeted safety messages were adapted to a seasonal cycle to best capture interest of children ages five to fourteen. The Swim to Survive Program was initiated to prevent drowning and swimming related casualties among grade three students in participating schools. The first comprehensive safety brochure for the city was provided to the Ottawa Safety Council for use in the re-development of the Safety Village. This initiative;
· Analysed local injury data to provide priority areas and targets for public education messages resulting in the identification of the top causes of injuries for children of various ages.
· Taught 196 grade 3 students what to do in the event that they fall in the water unexpectedly through the Swim to Survive Program
· Promoted 12 seasonal safety messages in 8 pilot schools.
This initiative was internally directed to promote City staff engagement and a positive work environment throughout the Community and Protective Services Department. Mechanisms were put in place to solicit input and feedback from staff and to ensure that Staff Investment workgroups were representative of the branches and units. Tools were put in place to recognize the efforts and contribution of staff. The strategy was instrumental in improved focus on the most valuable asset of CPS- “our people”.
· 88 managers and supervisors received training on completing the performance appraisals
· 899 Corporate Recognition Awards were presented to staff in 2007, which was an increase of 30% over 2006
· Over 2000 staff surveys were completed in 2007 with results indicating employee satisfaction increasing between 4 and 12% in many areas such as relationship with management, opportunity for input and feedback, recognition and performance appraisal, and work processes compared to 2005.
This agenda resulted in the development of the first comprehensive City of Ottawa Housing Strategy, which included of all three levels of government and diverse community groups. This initiative built community capacity around housing and homelessness in Ottawa and facilitated long-term planning for the continuum of housing supports and services required for citizens. The agenda solidified the notion that housing is not just shelter – it is a combination of many variables that enable residents to live in stable, affordable housing in Ottawa. Some of the successes of this initiative include housing loss prevention services and the construction of affordable housing units and;
· A comprehensive City Housing Strategy was adopted by Council in 2007 which focused on three strategic directions: building healthy, inclusive, sustainable communities; promoting and preserving affordable housing; and meeting the needs for supports to housing.
· The Housing Loss Prevention Network assisted a total of 7164 households in 2007.
· More than 250 affordable housing units were made available across the city.
The Seniors Agenda focus was to build capacity to identify senior’s issues and opportunities to meet the need in creative ways. Following a series of consultations, three top action areas were agreed upon: communication about services, transportation and housing. Ottawa’s first city wide Seniors Day Celebration was held to commemorate the contributions of seniors to the community in which a brochure outlining the available services was available and a web page for seniors was created on Ottawa.ca. Select service enhancements were also made to adjust to the needs of seniors in the areas of taxation, snow removal, public transportation and “Aging in Place” housing, including;
· 18,000 copies of the “Services for Seniors” Brochure were distributed to seniors through the Client Service Centres as well as many hospitals campuses and other community partners
· Over 350 seniors participated in the Seniors Day Celebration at City Hall.
· In partnership with United Way, developed an “Affordable Supportive Housing Framework” to inform service providers including the Champlain Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) and private investors about the housing needs of seniors and strategies required to support seniors in aging well at home.
The CPS Strategic Plan, the “How Can We Help?” service philosophy and the 12 initiatives contributed to the reinforcement of general concepts, knowledge and some new lessons for CPS staff. Engagement with customers is paramount in defining the services and examining how the services respond to the need. The value of understanding the unique and varied needs of the client must not be underestimated. Service excellence is achieved through the active engagement of staff in the delivery of services and ensuring the connection through the common service delivery philosophy of “How Can We Help?” The work of the past three years has also validated the practice of looking at “place” as a method or approach to service delivery and creating healthy communities and individuals.
Throughout the course of the three-year term, more than 900 community consultation sessions or meeting were held. Approximately 6000 residents and 700 community experts were consulted for the development and implementation of the initiatives.
There are no financial implications associated with this report.