Public Policy Shared Service Project


School of Social Policy


For the past year CUPS has been involved in the Public Policy Shared Service Project, brought together by the Calgary Social Policy Collaborative and the School of Public Policy (SPP) at the University of Calgary. The Collaborative represents a group of individuals and organizations committed to working together to inform the development and implementation of public policy that improves social conditions. Using research, the Public Policy Shared Service Project aims to address the complex challenges of poverty reduction.

Some topics that have been explored by the SPP in the past year include female labour participation in the workforce, emergency shelter stays in Calgary, and provincial spending on health, social services, and debt. The most recent paper released by the SPP titled, Falling Through the Cracks: How the Community-Based Approach Has Failed Calgary’s Chronically Homeless, examined the rate of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) amongst individuals experiencing homelessness in Calgary. This study found that approximately 60% of respondents had an ACE score of 4 or more.

Here at CUPS, we understand the negative impact that negative childhood experiences can have on later-life outcomes which can result in homelessness and poverty. Due to the growing body of literature that shows a strong link between high ACEs and poor mental and physical health outcomes, CUPS aims to build healthy brain architecture for children while also supporting parents with programming that meets their needs. This approach will help prevent ACEs in future generations, build stronger families, and have a greater impact on the collective well-being of our community. Collaborations between various agencies, like the Social Policy Collaborative, continue to accelerate the positive impact we have within our city.

Are you interested in staying informed on current social policy issues here in Alberta? Follow this link to find the latest publications from the SPP and learn more about the role that policy plays in poverty reduction efforts in your community.



#ShineALight on the Numbers

● 1 in 10 Calgarians live in poverty

● 1 in 4 Canadians lives with diabetes, undiagnosed diabetes or prediabetes

● 1 in 5 Canadians experience mental illness or addiction problems each year

● 4 million people in Canada experience food insecurity

● 1 in 8 Canadian households struggle to put food on the table.

● An estimated 45% of the overall homeless population are individuals living with mental illness

● 28 – 34% of shelter users are Indigenous peoples

● 40% of Indigenous children in Canada live in poverty

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