Canadian Social Research Links

Northwest Territories

Sites de recherche sociale au Canada

Territoires du Nord-Ouest

Updated May 1, 2018
Page révisée le 1er mai 2018

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* Key Welfare Links in the Northwest Territories (scroll down to the grey box below, right column)
* Latest Northwest Territories Budget
(February 6, 2014) - See "NEW" immediately below
* Poverty reduction in the Northwest Territories

* Non-governmental sites in the Northwest Territories



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NEW From Maytree:
[ ]

Social assistance summaries released
April 24
Maytree has released the latest update to Social Assistance Summaries, a resource that shows the number of social assistance recipients across Canada and how that has changed over time. This update includes 2017 data provided by provincial and territorial government officials alongside a brief description of the social assistance programs in each jurisdiction.

Social Assistance Summaries uses data provided by provincial and territorial government officials to track the number of social assistance recipients across Canada. It also includes a brief description of the social assistance programs in each jurisdiction.

How to view the reports:
Select a province or territory from the list below to download that jurisdiction's summary and statistics in a separate report (avg. 3-4 pages), or download the complete national report in one file (75 pages).


Download the all-Canada report (PDF, 75 pages) :

Download content directly for individual jurisdictions:

Alberta :

British Columbia :

Manitoba :

New Brunswick :

Newfoundland and Labrador :

Nova Scotia :

Northwest Territories :

Nunavut :

Ontario :

Prince Edward Island :

Quebec :

Saskatchewan :

Yukon Territory :

Maytree is committed to advancing systemic solutions to poverty and strengthening civic communities. It believes the most enduring way to fix the systems that create poverty is to have economic and social rights safeguarded for all people living in Canada.

Related link:

Social Assistance Summaries 2014 (PDF - 235KB, 49 pages)
Anne Makhoul, March 201

What Will it Take to Make Real
Progress on Northern Food Security?
(PDF - 1.5MB, 12 pages)
April 2016
This paper provides a brief overview of the evidence, and presents a number of policy recommendations for federal, provincial and territorial governments. These recommendations extend from an understanding of poverty, decreasing access to traditional foods, and the high cost of store-bought foods as key causes of food insecurity.

Is Nutrition North Canada on Shifting Ground?
April 2016
The Food Mail program, which was replaced by Nutrition North Canada, helped to create a grocery retailing environment in the north that was markedly different from what exists in the south. (...) We make the case that Nutrition North Canada is a simple subsidy for northern retailers that has been built on a flawed, overly-ambitious policy rationale. If the program is to continue in its current form, it can and should be grounded in a more realistic and comprehensive policy and program approach to the price of food in the north.

Food Banks Canada


- Go to the Nunavut Links page:

- Go to the Yukon Links page:

L’itinérance à Yellowknife : Un nouveau défi social (PDF - 27 pages)
Par Nick Falvo
Mai 2011
L’itinérance visible est considérable à Yellowknife (TNO). Pourtant, elle n’a fait l’objet que de très peu d’analyses par des tiers. Ce rapport commence
par expliquer rapidement qui sont les sans-abri à Yellowknife puis décrit les programmes d’intervention, dont les refuges d’urgence et les divers types de

NOTA : Ce rapport est la version française de Homelessness in Yellowknife (le prochain lien ci-dessous).

Homelessness in Yellowknife: An Emerging Social Challenge
By Nick Falvo
May 2011

Download the Full Report (PDF - 447K, 27 pages)
* Executive Summary (PDF - 339K, 4 pages)
* Plain Language Summary (PDF - 326K, 3 pages)

From the
Caledon Institute of Social Policy:

Social Assistance Summaries 2014 (PDF - 235KB, 49 pages)
Anne Makhoul, March 2015

The informative Social Assistance Statistical Report [ ], published by the federal and provincial/territorial governments, was last released in 2010 and presented 2008 data. In its place, the Caledon Institute will publish a Social Assistance Summaries series as part of its web-based Canada Social Report, which will be operational in spring 2015. In the interim, this publication offers an advance viewing of 12 of Canada’s 13 provincial and territorial Social Assistance programs. Material from Nunavut was not available in time to be included in this paper.
A summary was prepared for each province and territory with input and feedback from government representatives in every jurisdiction. All reports include program descriptions and data on the number of social assistance cases and recipients dating, in most jurisdictions, from 1997 to 2014. The summaries will be updated annually.

Caledon Institute of Social Policy

Ten Things to Know About Homelessness in Canada’s North
March 25, 2015
Nick Falvo on the state of homelessness and housing in Northern Canada:

On March 5 (2015), I gave a presentation on homelessness in Canada’s North at a panel at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the Alaska Anthropological Association. The other presenters on the panel were Peter Collings, Carmen Springer, Josh Louwerse and Sally Carraher. My presentation was loosely based on previous research I’ve done in the Northwest Territories (NWT) and the Yukon.
NOTE : This text includes links to over two dozen related resources.

Here are 10 things one should know about homelessness in Canada’s North:
(Click the link above for more on each of the 10 items.)

1. Construction costs are higher in Canada’s North than in most southern jurisdictions.
2. Once housing is built, it deteriorates more quickly in the North than it would in a southern jurisdiction.
3. Operating costs for housing are usually higher in the North.
4. Federal funding for social housing in Canada’s North is declining.
5. There is very little supportive housing in Canada’s North.
6. Conditions in homeless shelters in the North leave much to be desired.
7. There is insufficient ‘harm reduction’ programming in Canada’s North.
8. The “housing first” philosophy is not widely embraced throughout Canada’s North.
9. Access to affordable housing remains a major challenge in Canada’s North.
10. When considering homelessness in Canada’s North, it’s important to understand migration patterns.

Nick Falvo is a PhD Candidate in the School of Public Policy and Administration at Carleton University.

Northern Public Affairs


More reports, articles, presentations, etc.
by Nick Falvo
- incl. links to dozens of resources, mostly focusing on homelessness and Canada's North


- Go to the Homelessness and Housing Links page:

Income Assistance Policy, Procedures and Guidelines manuals updated

Click the link above to access the latest versions of each of the following policy manuals:

* Income Assistance Policy Manual - December 2014
* Senior Home Heating Subsidy Guidelines - July 2013
* Student Financial Assistance (SFA) Policy Manual - December 2014

Dept. responsible for income assistance:
Education, Culture and Employment

Ten Things to Know About Yellowknife’s Northern Property Conundrum:
Nick Falvo comments on Northern Property’s decision to “tighten” its policy on renting to income assistance recipients.
May 23, 2014

On May 20, I was a guest on The Trailbreaker (CBC North) with host Loren McGinnis discussing a controversial decision by Northern Property [ ], the NWT’s largest for-profit residential landlord.

The 8-minute podcast is available here:

Northern Property has been in the news lately for announcing that it will “tighten” its policies on renting units to recipients of income assistance. According to a company spokesperson: “two-thirds of its tenants currently on income assistance are behind in rent payments.”

Here are 10 things to know about this conundrum:
1. Rental housing in Yellowknife is expensive.
2. There is unemployment in the NWT.
3. Northern Property is big.
4. Northern Property may be in a monopoly situation.
5. The for-profit vs. non-profit debate is old.
6. The Government of the NWT can pay now or pay later.
7. This problem may get worse.
8. The Government of the NWT could expand the Transitional Rent Supplement Program (TRSP).
9. The Government of the NWT could fund more head leases.
10. Over the long term, the role of the federal government is crucial.

NOTE : Click the top link above ("Ten Things...") for
much more detailed information AND over two dozen links to contextual information.

Northern Public Affairs

Northwest Territories Anti-Poverty Action Plan Released
News Release
YELLOWKNIFE (February 11, 2014) – The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) Anti-Poverty Action Plan, tabled yesterday in the Legislative Assembly, describes the commitments the GNWT has made to address the needs of those NWT residents most vulnerable and those at risk of falling into poverty. The Action Plan identifies investments of $2.6 million and outlines actions the GNWT is taking now, or is committed to take, to address poverty, including supporting day shelter programs in Yellowknife and Inuvik, building new housing in small communities and providing nutritious food directly to children and youth through established programs.

Report : Government of the Northwest Territories Anti-Poverty Action Plan
February 2014
Complete report (PDF - 936K, 11 pages):
Summary (PDF - 432K, 3 pages)

Related earlier reports:

Building on the Strengths of Northerners:
A Strategic Framework toward the Elimination of Poverty in the NWT
(PDF - 3.8MB, 48 pages)
June 2013
Building on the Strengths of Northerners is a strategic policy framework, the first step in a long-term plan to eliminate poverty in the NWT. It provides an overview of what we are doing now and what we need to do in the future to realize our vision of a poverty-free NWT.

Three Ways Poverty Costs Us:
1. Direct costs : Social programs such as income support and services for people living in poverty.
2. Indirect costs : The burden of poverty is felt in emergency wards, law enforcement, the criminal justice system and other public services.
3, Social costs : Lost potential, poor health, diminished contribution to community life.


Summary of the NWT Anti-Poverty Strategic Framework (PDF - 3.2MB, 24 pages)
November 2013


A Charter for Working Together Toward the Elimination of Poverty in the NWT (PDF - 400K, 4 pages)
November 29, 2013

Health and Social Services
Government of the Northwest Territories


Poverty Reduction in
the Northwest Territories

NOTE: this link takes you to the Northwest Territories section of the
Anti-poverty Strategies and Campaigns page of this site:

From the
Northwest Territories Finance Department:

2014-2015 Budget : Northwest Territories
February 6, 2014
Main page for all budget documents for the current year and back to 1999-2000
(Francophones : vous y trouverez également des liens vers la version française des documents budgétaires.)

Budget Highlights (PDF - 240K, 4 pages)

2014 - 2015 Budget Address : Northwest Territories (PDF - 612K, 56 pages)
- , this link will take you to a single PDF file containing the complete text of the Budget Address PLUS the following budget papers:
* Budget Highlights * Economic Review * Fiscal Review * Revenues * Expenditures
Taking action to respond to the Anti-Poverty Strategic Framework is a priority for this Legislative Assembly and we have added $2.6 million in new funding for actions to support this Framework. This funding includes $1 million to provide healthy and nutritious food to children and youth through early childhood, school and after-school programs, $500,000 to fund non-governmental organizations and Aboriginal governments for projects that support the priorities in the Framework, and $680,000 for transitional housing units in four non-market communities to support "hard to house" residents unable to access other housing options.
(Excerpt from the Budget Address: page 7 in the paper or page 9 in the PDF file)


- Go to the 2014 Canadian Government Budgets Links page:


Government of the Northwest Territories Home Page

This Week's News

Government Telephone Directory
Health & Social Services

NWT Housing Corporation

Bureau of Statistics
Northern News Services Yellowknife Canada




Minimum Wage:

Current and Forthcoming Minimum Hourly Wage Rates for Adult Workers in Canada
- federal govt. site --- the best resource for info on current and upcoming minimum wage levels
Source :
Minimum Wage Database


Key welfare links

Department responsible for welfare
Education, Culture and Employment (ECE)

Name of the welfare program
Income Assistance

Policy Manual
Income Assistance Policy, Procedures and Guidelines
Click this link to access the latest version of
the Income Assistance Policy Manual.

Social Assistance Act
(PDF file)
Income Assistance Regulations (PDF file)
Legislation Search (PDF file)
[ Legislation of the Northwest Territories - Dept. of Justice ]

Welfare statistics
See Social Assistance caseload/beneficiary statistics and expenditure information, 1997 to 2014 - this link takes you to a section of the Key Welfare Links page of this site. UPDATED APRIL 1, 2015

Number of People on Welfare, March 1995 to March 2005 (PDF file - 133K, 1 page)
Source: National Council of Welfare

Welfare rates (benefits)
- See Schedule "A" of the
Income Assistance Regulations
- see also sections 3 and 4 of the Income Assistance policy manual

Latest search results on for
"welfare, -child, -animal, Northwest Territories"

- Web search results
- News search results
- Blog search results

Related Links
Income Security Reforms
--- Community Voices - April 2006 (PDF - 930.81 K)
--- Breaking Down the Barriers - July 2007 (PDF - 1.26 MB)
--- News Release - Income Security Reform - August 2007 (PDF - 18.88 K)
--- Backgrounder – Income Security Changes - August 2007 (PDF - 54.4 K)
--- Backgrounder – Income Assistance Changes - August 2007 (PDF - 224.89 K)
--- Income Security Review Changes 2007-2008 - Q&A - August 2007(PDF - 69.31 K)

Social Union Framework Agreement: GNWT Mobility Report (August 2002) - PDF file - 175K, 6 pages
Government of the Northwest Territories

Government - Gouvernement

Legislative Assembly

Poverty Reduction in
the Northwest Territories

NOTE: this link takes you to the Northwest Territories section of the
Anti-poverty Strategies and Campaigns page of this site:

Since May 2010, ALL links to content concerning poverty reduction strategies and campaigns have been moved to the above page from the individual provincial/territorial pages, including government and NGO links.

Education, Culture and Employment (ECE)
- Department responsible for welfare

NOTE: For key links to NWT income assistance program information, scroll back up to the grey box above.

Health & Social Services

- incl. Social Services links to:
* Community Wellness (Brighter Futures - Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program - Health Promotion Strategy Fund)
* Family Violence (Effects of Violence on Children - Information for Victims)
* Child and Family Services
* Mental Health and Addictions (What is an Addiction? - What is Mental Health?)

- incl Health links to :
Immunization and Vaccines - Injury in the NWT - Environmental Health - NWT Health Care Plan - Diseases & Conditions - Feeling Sick? - Long Term Care - Tobacco and Your Health

NWT Finance


Northwest Territories Budget 2013- 2014
February 7, 2013


NWT Finance


- Go to the 2013 Canadian Government Budgets Links page:


NOTE: On this page, you'll find information about the latest provincial/territorial budget only.

To avoid unnecessary duplication of budget links on multiple pages, I've moved links to all earlier budgets over to the pages below, organized by fiscal year. The pages below include links to media analysis and selected critique from NGOs on the budgets, and the amount of coverage varies across jurisdictions and over the years.

Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2013
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2012
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2011
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2010
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2009
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2008

Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2007
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2006
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2005
Go to Canadian Government Budgets 2004

NWT Housing Corporation

Bureau of Statistics

Other Northwest Territories Sites

(in reverse chronological order)

From the
Office of the Auditor General of Canada:

Residents have access to income security programs, but there are weaknesses in delivery
News Release
7 March 2013
Yellowknife—The Department of Education, Culture and Employment ensures that residents have reasonable access to income security programs in communities across the Northwest Territories, but it does not follow applicable requirements when delivering these programs, says Michael Ferguson, the Auditor General of Canada, in his Report delivered today to the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly.

The complete report:

2013 March Report of the Auditor General of Canada:
Northwest Territories Income Security Programs—Department of Education, Culture and Employment
HTML version :
PDF version (808K, 44 pages) : )
March 2013
The Department of Education, Culture and Employment is responsible for delivering several key income security programs in the Northwest Territories: the Income Assistance program, the Student Financial Assistance program, the Child Care User Subsidy, and the Senior Home Heating Subsidy. The Department spends a total of about $30 million annually on these programs.
We examined whether the Department is delivering its income security programs in accordance with key elements of applicable legislation and policies. We also examined whether the Department assesses program performance to ensure that the objective it has set out for its income security programs is being met.

Office of the Auditor General of Canada


Related links:

Yellowknife woman slams income assistance program
Miranda Currie says staff repeatedly lost her paperwork and made her travel back and forth to office
CBC News Posted: Mar 13, 2013

NT Education, Culture and Employment Minister on Hot Seat Over Scathing Report:
Transcript of radio coverage related to the report.
CJCD Radio, Tuesday, March 12, 2013
* Bob Bromley, MLA, Weledeh (Yellowknife)
* Miranda Curry (author of a poem detailing her struggles to get income assistance in Yellowknife). :
* John McFadden, CJCD Mix 100 radio coverage News Director
* Josh Long, CKLB Radio

Miranda's poem:

Income Outcome (PDF - 196K, 6 pages)
By Miranda Currie
February 20, 2013
NOTE : Miranda’s poem starts on page 3 of this excerpt from NT Hansard.
The poem was read in the NT Legislative Assembly by Bob Bromley, Yellowknife MP, on March 12, 2013.

The Federal Government’s Northern Strategy and
Implications for Housing in the Northwest Territories

On November 24 (2011), Frances Abele and Nick Falvo presented findings from their respective chapters in How Ottawa Spends 2011-12: Trimming Fat or Slicing Pork?
at an official launch and panel discussion in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.

In the November 27 issue (3rd item) of the Canadian Social Research Newsletter:
... you'll find links to a blog posting by author Nick Falvo in the Progressive Economics Forum about the project, to a summary of and presentation notes on Nick's work, and to a summary of Frances Abele's chapter in How Ottawa Spends on the subject of the Conservatives’ Northern Development Strategy. The link below is to the complete 19-page chapter by Nick in How Ottawa Spends.


Government-Assisted Housing in the Northwest Territories
and the Role of the Federal Government
(PDF - 460K, 19 pages)
Nick Falvo
This chapter [of How Ottawa Spends] examines the housing situation in the Northwest Territories, especially as it affects low-income residents.
Topics discussed in this chapter include the manner in which government-assisted housing is administered in the NWT, as well as the uniqueness of government-assisted housing in the nwt. Building costs, forms of government-assisted housing, recent policies of senior levels of government, and other emerging issues in the NWT combine to create a unique public policy study.
How Ottawa Spends, 2011-2012
Trimming Fat or Slicing Pork?
By Christopher Stoney and G. Bruce Doern
A critical examination of the Harper Conservatives' fiscal austerity strategies in the wake of Budget 2011-2012 and the often bitter politics of continued minority government.


Housing in the Northwest Territories
By Nick Falvo
November 26, 2011
Last week, I was in Yellowknife, where I released results of new research on affordable housing in the Northwest Territories (NWT). The research project was sponsored by the Social Economy Research Network of Northern Canada, and was a collaboration with the Centre for Northern Families. (...) The research results, which appear as a chapter in the 2011-2012 edition of How Ottawa Spends, suggest that a long-term, permanent commitment is required by the federal government in order to sustain housing in the NWT. The chapter argues that it’s more cost effective for the federal government to reinvest the savings it accrues (as current agreements run out) into fixing already-existing housing, than it would be to allow current units to disappear completely and to then rebuild from scratch.
Progressive Economics Forum


Use it or Lose It : The Conservatives’
Northern Development Strategy:
(PDF - 146K, 1 page)
By Frances Abele
This chapter is about the Conservative government’s policies and actions towards the North since 2006. The Conservative policies are compared to those of earlier Liberal federal governments. They are also compared to the needs and wishes of northerners.


Government-Assisted Housing in the Northwest
Territories and the Role of the Federal Government:
(164K, 1 page)
By Nick Falvo
This chapter is about housing (especially for low-income households) in the Northwest Territories. The chapter compares housing in the NWT with housing in the rest of Canada.

[ Download Nick's Powerpoint presentation - (1.7MB, 37 slides)] [ Free Powerpoint viewer ]

The Homeless Hub : Northwest Territories
[ The Homeless Hub : National (Canada) ]
The mission of the Homeless Hub is to provide a single online tool for homelessness stakeholders from across Canada to use, to find the research, strategy and policy information they need to make informed decisions when creating effective solutions. (...) As a one-stop-shop, the Homeless Hub is a place where community services providers, researchers, government representatives, people who have experienced homelessness and the general public can access and share research, stories, and best practices


From CBC North:

New Report Paints Grim Picture of Public Housing in the NWT
CBC Special Report
November 24, 2011
This is a transcript of the interview by the CBC's Joslyn Oosenbrug with the authors of the study, Nick Falvo from the Carleton University School of Public Policy and Administration, and Arlene Hache from the Centre of Northern Families in Yellowknife to discuss their findings.

CBC NorthBeat (YouTube video : duration 5:13)
This news video focuses on the release of the reports by Frances Abele and Nick Falvo.


Canada’s federal Arctic policy must start with the people who live there
By Carolyn Bennett, Liberal MP
November 21, 2011
This ‘father knows best’ prime minister writes prescriptions for the North without any comprehension of, or consideration for the real challenges of the people living there. (...) Since taking office, Mr. Harper has embraced a simplistic, narrow, and purely militaristic approach to the North, with the recent addition of a little nod to resource extraction. Nowhere in this annual rite is there a commitment to additional housing, education or community-based health care supports.
The Hill Times

Canada's North Beyond 2011 - Conference
October 11-13, 2011
Edmonton, Alberta

Canada’s North Beyond 2011 will assess and debate the critical challenges and opportunities in Canada’s North. We intend to make this Canada’s preeminent event on the North, engaging a wide range of community, business, and Aboriginal leaders and representatives from local, regional, and national government to collaborate on three critical aspects of northern prosperity and sustainability—thriving communities, economic development, and sovereignty and security.
Participate in this unparalleled event, and collaborate with public and private sector leaders from across the country and its northern communities

All registrants for this event are eligible for a 50% discount on travel from First Air! Please visit our Accommodations and Travel page for more information!
You can help change the future outlook for Canada’s North.
Conference Board of Canada

Homelessness in Yellowknife: An Emerging Social Challenge
By Nick Falvo
Mai 2011
There is a considerable amount of visible homelessness in Yellowknife (NWT), yet very little third-party analysis of the situation. This report begins by briefly discussing who is homeless in Yellowknife and then outlines program responses, including emergency shelters and various models of housing. An overview will then be provided of major funding initiatives from the federal and territorial governments, as well as various forms of homelessness assistance provided by the City of Yellowknife. The report concludes by making policy recommendations with respect to the need for increased accountability, shelter standards, more housing options for the homeless, and a public health response to alcohol and drug use.

Download the Full Report (PDF - 447K, 27 pages)
* Executive Summary (PDF - 339K, 4 pages)
* Plain Language Summary (PDF - 326K, 3 pages)

Version française (PDF - 27 pages):

L’itinérance à Yellowknife : Un nouveau défi social
Par Nick Falvo

The Homeless Hub
The Homeless Hub was created to address the need for a single place to find homelessness information from across Canada. Launched in 2007, the Homeless Hub is a web-based research library and information center representing an innovative step forward in the use of technology to enhance knowledge mobilization and networking.

Related link:

Top 10 Things I Learned About Research
While Preparing a Report on Homelessness in Yellowknife

By Nick Falvo
May 25, 2011

[Author Nick Falvo is a PhD Candidate at Carleton University’s School of Public Policy and Administration. He also teaches a course on affordable housing and homelessness at Carleton's School of Social Work.]

Homeless in the Homeland:
A Growing Problem For Indigenous People in Canada's North
By Frances Abele, Nick Falvo and Arlene Haché*
Today, homelessness and inadequate housing in northern Canada disproportionately afflicts Indigenous people. This is a striking fact in a region where Indigenous people lived very independently (though of course not autarkicly) until the second half of the twentieth century. In the years since then both economic development and state initiatives have transformed their lives.
Parity Magazine : November 2010 "Homelessness and Dispossession" Edition
Parity is the national homelessness publication of the Council to Homeless Persons in Australia
[ * Frances Abele is professor of Public Policy and Administration at Carleton University, Ottawa. Nick Falvo is a doctoral candidate in the same program. Arlene Haché is executive director of the Yellowknife Women’s Society. ]

Council to Homeless Persons (Australia)
Established in 1972, the Council to Homeless Persons is the peak Victorian body representing individuals and organisations with a stake or interest in homelessness.

Northwest Territories Provincial Election Resources

Election Almanac
- complete coverage of federal, provincial and territorial elections in Canada including election results, public opinion polls, ridings and candidates, election news, electoral history, links, and more

- Go to the Political Parties and Elections Links in Canada (Provinces and Territories) page:

May 25, 2009
New resource from the
Canadian Council on Social Development:

Poverty Reduction Policies and Programs in the Northwest Territories (PDF - 333K, 27 pages)
By Jeffrey Wilson, Alternatives North

Poverty Reduction Policies and Programs
Social Development Report Series, 2009
[ Canadian Council on Social Development ]

Related links ===> Go to the Anti-poverty Strategies and Campaigns page:

Alternatives North
"Alternatives North is a social justice coalition operating in the Northwest Territories. Within our ranks are representatives of churches, labour unions, environmental organizations, women and family advocates and anti-poverty groups."
- incl. links to the following content:
Daycare - Northern Strategy - Energy Strategy for the NWT

From the
National Council of Welfare (NCW):

NOTE : The National Council of Welfare closed its doors and shut down its website at the end of September 2012.
For more information, see

The links to the three reports below are functional because the files are copied to my web server.

Over the years, the Council has produced many reports on poverty and welfare, but there are three that stand out in my mind as milestone reports on the history of welfare in Canada, at least since the 1980s.

1. 1987
Welfare in Canada: The Tangled Safety Net
(PDF - 2.7MB, 131 pages)
November 1987
Tangled Safety Net examines the following issues in Canadian social assistance network of programs:
* Complex rules * Needs-testing * Rates of assistance * Enforcement * Appeals * Recommendations
This report is the first comprehensive national analysis of social assistance programs operated by the provincial, territorial and municipal governments. These programs function as the safety net for Canadians and are better known by their everyday name ‘welfare’.

Version française :
Le bien-être social au Canada : Un filet de sécurité troué (PDF - 3Mo., 138 pages)
Novembre 1987
[ NOTA : Si vous trouvez un lien vers ce fichier en français, veuillez communiquer avec moi pour le partager.
Merci! ]


2. 1992
Welfare Reform
(PDF - 2.8MB, 61 pages)
Summer 1992
This report is an update of the 1987 Tangled Safety Net, but it presents information by jurisdiction rather than by issue - covers all provinces and territories.

Version française:
Réforme du bien-être social (PDF - 3,5Mo., 63 pages)


3. 1997
Another Look at Welfare Reform
(PDF - 6.75MB, 134 pages)
Autumn 1997
- an in-depth analysis of changes in Canadian welfare programs in the 1990s. The report focuses on the provincial and territorial reforms that preceded the repeal of the Canada Assistance Plan and those that followed the implementation of the Canada Health and Social Transfer in April 1996.
[Proactive disclosure : I did the research for, and wrote the provincial-territorial section of, this report while I was on a one-year secondment to the Council. Gilles ]

Version française:
Un autre regard sur la réforme du bien-être social (PDF - 8Mo., 148 pages)


Companion document to
Another Look:

Overview of Provincial (and Territorial)
Welfare Reforms in the 1990s

October 1998
Fifteen pages of research notes used in the production of Another Look at Welfare Reform.
HINT: There's a WEALTH of information on provincial-territorial welfare reforms in these pages that didn't make it to the final report!


National Council of Welfare
Established in 1969, the Council is an advisory group to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (originally the Minister of Health and Welfare Canada). The mandate of the Council is to advise the Minister regarding any matter relating to social development that the Minister may refer to the Council for its consideration or that the Council considers appropriate.

October 6 (2012)
The National Council of Welfare closed its doors and shut down its website at the end of September 2012.
For more information, see

List of issues to be taken up in connection with the consideration of the third periodic report of Canada: United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights - Implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (June 10, 1998) 
Northwest Territories Government Response to the U.N. List of Issues (November 1998) 

Internet North (Yellowknife)
Northern News Services Yellowknife Canada


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