Since 2007, the City of Coquitlam has taken action to incorporate a cultural diversity lens to the day-to-day practices of the city organization.
Approved in 2011, the city’s Multiculturalism Strategy and Action Plan is designed not only to improve internal practices, but also to make the city more inclusive and responsive to the increasingly diverse residents of the Coquitlam.
The city approached the project in three phases. First, the city evaluated existing activities and strategies related to multiculturalism. Next, with input from city staff and multiple stakeholders, the city developed a community vision, and published a resource guide for newcomers. Last, the City of Coquitlam Multiculturalism Strategy and Action Plan (2011) focused on creating change within the organization and supporting opportunities to communicate the city’s diversity, connect with diverse communities, and include diversity in the life of the city.
Stakeholders associated with Coquitlam’s Multiculturalism Strategy and Action Plan include, but are not limited to:
• City of Coquitlam (various departments, but in particular, the Planning Department and the Leisure and Parks Services)
• Pacific Employment & Education Resources (PEERS)
• City of Coquitlam residents
• City of Coquitlam elected officials
• City of Coquitlam Multicultural Advisory Committee (MAC)
• Canadian Federal Government Heritage Canada
• Fraser Health Authority
• School District 43 (Coquitlam School District)
• Various non-profit organizations
Essential partnerships forged by the City of Coquitlam in the creation of this plan include:
• a financial partnership with Heritage Canada (who provided funding for the project)
• a contractual partnership with PEERS (for assistance with consulting and development)
• partnerships with the community and non-profit organizations through focus groups and the Multiculturalism Advisory Committee
Summary of the process
Phase 1: Taking Stock
This phase included evaluation of the City’s current activities and strategies related to multiculturalism and diversity, demographics and facts for the City of Coquitlam, creation of a project team, consultation with community stakeholders, community consultations, and the creation of the Phase 1-Taking Stock Report . These activities took place from 2007 to January 2009.
Phase 2: Development of Community Vision Final Report
This phase took place between March and September 2009. More details are available in the Phase 2: Development of Community Vision Final Report.
This phase involved:
• Establishing the Project Advisory Group
• Conducting Newcomer Focus Groups
• Developing a Vision and Establishing Goals
• Developing a Community Resource
• Developing, Distributing, and Analyzing a City Staff Survey
Phase 3: Development of City of Coquitlam Multiculturalism Strategy and Action Plan
This phase involved a strategic planning process with City staff and the Project Advisory
Group, with input from the Multiculturalism Advisory Committee.
Key Outcomes and impact
The City of Coquitlam continues to monitor the outcomes and impact of the City of Coquitlam Multiculturalism Strategy and Action Plan annually. Some of the outcomes of the project have included:
- The creation of the three reports (one report for each phase) and their posting on the City of Coquitlam website’s multiculturalism sub-page
- A series of actions on multiculturalism for the different City of Coquitlam departments
- An on-line Newcomer’s Guide to Community Programs and Services
- The continuation of the Multiculturalism Advisory Committee
- Workplans and progress reports produced for the Multiculturalism Advisory Committee
- A series of welcoming events
- A very useful multiculturalism website with links to diversity related items
The City of Coquitlam website contains a comprehensive overview of the work done around multiculturalism in Coquitlam to date, including links to diversity related information and organizations.
For more information contact:
Manager, Corporate Communications
City of Coquitlam