Marvyn Novick, a leading thinker and contributor to the social policy field in Ontario and Canada passed away suddenly on Tuesday, June 21, 2016. Marvyn, 75, although retired after a distinguished career in the social planning field in Toronto and as Dean and teacher at the Ryerson School of Social Work, remained actively engaged as a contributor to the social policy work of the Social Planning Network of Ontario.
In 2007, Marvyn was awarded a lifetime honorary membership in the SPNO for his visionary leadership on a poverty reduction strategy for Ontario. Marvyn visited communities across the province on a speaking tour to urge all provincial parties contesting the 2007 election to adopt timelines and targets for poverty reduction in Ontario. Along with other community advocacy campaigns, his work aroused public interest and support leading to a pre-election commitment by Premier McGuinty to develop a poverty reduction plan within a year of his government’s re-election.
Subsequently, Marvyn led the framing of a blueprint for a poverty reduction strategy in Ontario and took it on a “PRS road show” in several tours of 25 communities across the province for feedback and input. Bringing disparate parts of the advocacy community together around several common themes and goals had an impact on the Ontario Poverty Reduction Strategy released in December 2008.
Long before his engagement as an “advocacy pensioner”, as he called it, Marvyn made his mark as a brilliant policy thinker and community activist in his professional life. He researched and wrote major national reports on child poverty in Canada, addressed issues of work and family life, focused public attention on the social responsibilities of local governments in Ontario, conducted a widely cited two volume study on changing social conditions in Toronto suburbs, and is the author of working papers on the life chances of children.
The federal government’s reformulated National Child Benefit projected to bring 40% of low income children out of poverty in Canada was originally inspired and put in place in the late 1990s as a result of the work of the Child Poverty Action Group and CAMPAIGN 2000, in which Marvyn was a driving force and leader.
Devoted to his family, Marvyn mourned the loss of his beloved wife Ryva in 2003 and he always enjoyed telling stories about the lives and happenings of his children and grandchildren, while also eagerly interested in updates on the personal and family lives of his friends and colleagues.
While his contribution to our work in SPNO is irreplaceable, the loss of this dear friend and mentor to so many of us extends far beyond the work. Hard to imagine that deep voice silenced, that hardy laugh stilled. As so many have said in response to this sad news, he was a moral compass for inclusion, equity and social justice and we are charged with continuing the struggle in honour of his lasting legacy.
People will have started receiving their 2016 Census forms this week (starting May 2, 2016). Apparently, Canadians are so excited, that they crashed the census website.
Canada’s next census will be conducted in May 2016.
Early in May, census packages will be delivered to households across Canada, providing residents with the information they need to complete their questionnaire online or on paper.
Completed questionnaires will provide valuable information that will be used by all levels of government to make decisions about your neighbourhood and community. Information obtained through the census is needed to plan services such as child care, schooling, family services, housing, public transportation and skills training for employment.
Every person, young and old, must be included in the 2016 Census.
For more information about the 2016 Census, visit www.census.gc.ca.
Canada’s next census will take place in May 2016 and Statistics Canada is hiring approximately 35,000 employees across the country to work on the collection phase of the 2016 Census.
Staff are required for a variety of supervisory and non-supervisory positions between March and the end of July 2016. These non-office jobs will involve working in neighbourhoods and communities across all urban, rural and remote areas of the country.
Approximately 5,000 Crew Leaders and assistants will be hired to train, lead and supervise a team of Enumerators, while an estimated 30,000 Enumerators will be hired to distribute census questionnaires, conduct in-person interviews and follow-up with respondents in person and by phone.
The rates of pay range from $16.31 to $19.91 an hour, plus authorized expenses. Screening of applications will begin in mid-February.
Applicants must be:
If you’re interested in working directly in the community, meeting new people or earning supplementary income, then this kind of work is right for you! Apply online at www.census.gc.ca/jobs.
The Social Planning Network of Ontario (SPNO) is an incorporated non-profit organization with a membership of 20 local and regional social planning and community development councils across Ontario, each with its own extensive network of non-profit and charitable community-based service agencies. The SPNO exists to build and support community capacity not only for purposes of sound community planning but also to develop and strengthen the range and quality of social services and supports to vulnerable populations in Ontario’s communities.
The primary resource that the community services sector brings to the multiple and complex needs of their localities and regions is the combination of time, knowledge, talents and skills of its workers. The Changing Workplaces Review observes that all work settings including those in the non-profit social sector are being transformed to some degree by technology in the knowledge society (Ontario Ministry of Labour [OML], 2015, p. 9). While the impact of rapidly changing technological innovation on the non-profit community sector cannot be denied, still most community service provision is primarily delivered on a face-to-face engagement basis at the ground level in everyday community life (Scott et al., 2006, p. 6). Yet, this work is often not recognized in terms of compensation nor highly valued, making the workforce in the non-profit social sector subject to conditions of precarious employment with its attendant implications not only for the workers occupying these jobs but also for the individuals, families and communities that depend on their services (Baines, Cunningham, and Shields, 2014, p. 82).
Inadequate employment standards are a major issue in general in the Ontario labour market, which is why the Changing Workplaces Review was initiated. There are particular issues meriting consideration with respect to the nature of employment in the non-profit, community-based social sector, which SPNO wishes to highlight for the Special Advisors.