Have YOUR say in the creation of a National Caregiving Strategy

A National Caregiving Strategy must reflect the experiences of caregivers and care providers across Canada. We want to hear your ideas for a brighter future of care.

While policies that recognize and support caregivers and care providers are needed at all levels of government, our National Caregiving Strategy will focus on federal areas of responsibility. This will have the broadest immediate impact across the country and influence future policy changes in the provinces and territories.

Federal areas of responsibility include:

  • Updates to the tax code and Canada Pension Plan
  • Some areas of healthcare, such as providing healthcare funding to the provinces and territories, setting national healthcare priorities, military and veteran healthcare and First Nations, Inuit and Métis health services
  • Housing
  • Immigration system

In contrast, the provinces and territories are responsible for the delivery of health care, education, and social services.

More detail on the differences between the federal and provincial government can be found on the Government of Canada website.

How to have your voice heard

We want to hear from you about what should be part of the National Caregiving Strategy.

You can participate by:

  1. Attending one of our webinars held during May, which is National Caregiver Month. See our events page to register.

  2. Submitting your ideas by completing the form below.

The policy ideas presented in the form were informed by feedback from over 3,000 Canadians submitted through the 2023 National Caregiving Survey and at the Canadian Caregiving Summit, held in Ottawa and online. You can include additional policy ideas in the open box forms.

What is a caregiver? 

Caregivers provide support to people with physical, intellectual, or developmental disabilities, medical conditions, mental illness, or needs related to aging. Caregivers are family, friends, and other natural support (like neighbours or chosen family) who provide care because of a relationship, not as a job or career. The caregiver role is mutually determined by the person and their caregiver(s).

What is a care provider? 

Care providers include paid support professionals such as direct support professionals, personal support workers and respite workers.

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Complete the engagement form:

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Thank you for your time helping us make Canada the best place in the world to give and receive care. Before submitting your responses, please confirm your email so we can share results and information related to the creation of a National Caregiving Strategy. Your postal code will help us ensure that all areas of Canada are reflected in the National Caregiving Strategy.

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Caregivers and care providers face many barriers when supporting people in healthcare settings or accessing services intended to support them.

Though healthcare is administered by the provincial and territorial governments, the federal government has a large role to play in setting priorities and funding services. Information about the federal government’s role in healthcare is available on the Government of Canada’s website.

The ideas below reflect possible federal policy ideas that could help resolve issues caregivers and care providers face every day.

Select the option (one) that you think is most critical to supporting caregivers while engaging with the healthcare system:

Social and community care

Social and community care services like home care, respite (i.e. appropriate care services without caregiver supervision) and caregiver support groups are challenging to access. Too often, eligibility criteria restrict access to services, or a shortage of qualified care providers creates long waitlists.

The ideas below reflect possible federal policy ideas that could help resolve issues caregivers and care providers face every day.

Select the option (one) that you think is most critical to supporting caregivers to access social and community care:

Working caregivers

Millions of caregivers balance their care responsibilities with the demands of working or going to school. Many caregivers, particularly women, take time away from work or leave their career entirely to provide care. This means that caregivers end up working less than the rest of the workforce, resulting in lower earnings and missing opportunities for career advancement. Caregiver-friendly policies in the workplace and at university or college could help alleviate the stress that impacts caregivers who juggle care with work or school.

The ideas below reflect possible federal policy ideas that could help resolve issues caregivers and care providers face every day.

Select the option (one) that you think is most critical to supporting caregivers to continue working and completing their education:

Care workforce

Care providers like personal support workers (PSWs) and direct support professionals (DSPs) support people to age well and participate in their communities. Despite the importance of their role, care providers are underpaid, undervalued and face challenging working conditions. Care providers new to Canada face a difficult path to permanent residency.

Long-standing structural problems have been made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many care providers left the workforce due to these problems. The lack of staff means workloads are getting higher and it is getting harder and harder for caregivers to find the help they need.

The options below reflect possible federal policy solution that could help resolve some of the issues commonly experienced by caregivers and care providers in these settings.

Select the option (one) that you think is most critical to supporting the care workforce:

Care Champions Table

The National Caregiving Strategy Champions Table brings together leaders across the ageing, disability and illness communities, as well as researchers and people with lived experience to help support, advise, and promote policy ideas that will benefit all those who give care. The purpose of this group is to support CCCE craft an effective and practical strategy. 

The group will meet regularly throughout the year to provide critical input into the development of the strategy. They will also engage their communities to ensure that a wide diversity of caregiver and care provider perspectives are included in the process.

Aimee Foreman
Founder and CEO, Silvermark

Alyssa Brierley
Executive Director, National Institute on Ageing

Amanda MacKenzie
National Director, External Affairs, March of Dimes

Amy Coupal
Executive Director, Ontario Caregiver Organization

Bill Adair
Executive Director, Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Catherine Riddell
Manager, Health Networks, Children’s Healthcare Canada

Christa Haansta
Strategic Advisor and Caregiver Advocate, former Co-Chair Caregivers CAN

Daniel Nowoselski
Advocacy Manager, Canadian Cancer Society

Darrel Gregory
Executive Director, Caregivers Alberta

Donna Thomson
Caregiver and Author

Grant Bruno
Researcher, University of Alberta

Holly Prince
Researcher, Lakehead University

Jennifer Churchill
Executive Director, Empowered Kids Ontario

Jenny Theriault
Executive Director, Caregivers Nova Scotia

Jodi Hall
Executive Director, Canadian Association for Long-Term Care

Jonathan Lai
Executive Director, Autism Alliance of Canada

Juanita Forte
Care Provider, Direct Support Professional Fellow

Katrina Prescott
Co-Chair, Caregivers CAN

Krista Carr
Executive Director, Inclusion Canada

Laura LaChance
CEO, Canadian Down Syndrome Society

Laura Tamblyn-Watts
CEO, CanAge

Laurel Gillespie
Executive Director, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association

Lauren Rettinger
Director, Government Relations, Parkinsons Canada

Lorin MacDonald
Founder and Principal, HearVue

Magalie Dumas
Deputy Director General, L’Appui des proches aidants

Nadine Henningsen
Executive Director, Canadian Home Care Association

Dr. Naomi Lightman
Researcher, Toronto Metropolitan University

Dr. Nathan Stall
Geriatrician, Sinai Health; Researcher, University Health Network

Neil Belanger
Executive Director, British Columbia Aboriginal Network on Disability Society

Nicole Dauz
Co-Chair, Caregivers CAN

Nora Spinks
Founder, Work-Life Harmony

Oliver Fitzpatrick
Young Carers Coordinator, AMI-Quebec

Patrice Lindsay
Director, Health Systems Change, Heart and Stroke Foundation

Roslyn Shields
Senior Policy Analyst, CAMH

Sarah Calderwood
Vice President, Government Relations, Alzheimer Society Canada

Scott Robins
Care Provider, Direct Support Professionals Fellow

Tanya MacDonald
Director, Strategic Initiatives, Health Excellence Canada

Thomas Simpson
Vice President, CNIB Voice and Executive Director, Come to Work, Canadian National Institute for the Blind

Tyler Downey
Secretary-Treasurer, SEIU Healthcare

Barb MacLean
Executive Director, Family Caregivers of British Columbia