The Community Social Development (CSD) Department develops social policies, strategies, actions plans, facilities and services to increase social equity in Richmond. The City’s Social Development Strategy defines social equity as “Ensuring that all segments of the population have equal opportunity and that their needs are recognized and addressed in a fair manner”. Social equity ensures that basic needs (e.g. food, clothing, housing, income), social supports (e.g. education, health care, child care) and community services (e.g. parks, recreation, arts & culture, social services) are available to and accessible by all citizens, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, income or ability. An equitable society is an inclusive one; participation by all residents is welcomed, encouraged and facilitated.
Social equity is a cornerstone of a sustainable community; the City’s Sustainability Policy defines social sustainability as “basic needs are met, wealth and resources are distributed justly, equitable opportunities exist for social enrichment at the individual and community level and resiliency exists to address challenges”.
Examples of the work undertaken by the CSD Department includes: facilitating the development of affordable housing and child care facilities; supporting community social services; planning for an increasingly diverse community, an aging population, youth and those with disabilities; providing recreation fee subsidies to low-income residents; and conducting research to better understand needs of community members.
A few examples of City departments contributing to social equity in Richmond include Arts & Culture, by providing low or no-cost art activities; Recreation & Sport by providing low or no-cost recreation and sport activities; Parks by providing parks throughout the City as well as community garden plots; Planning and Development by negotiating the provision of affordable housing and child care in new developments; and Engineering and Public Works by overseeing the construction and maintenance of recreation, sport, arts and cultural facilities.
Please see the following links for further information about social equity initiatives undertaken by the City of Richmond:
For information about services supporting social equity offered by non-profit and statutory organizations serving Richmond residents, please see the following links: