'Our community is a different place than it was two years ago': Vital Signs report shows problems growing
The London Community Foundation (LCF) launched its 2021 Vital Signs report, "Be the Change" on Thursday.
The report acts as a ‘pulse check’ on the state of the community,
“The report pains a picture of serious problems we’re facing,” says LCF’s Vital Signs Chair Dr. Jerry White.
“But it’s not just about numbers, it calls upon us all to take action and provides people with the tools to start making social change.”
The report launched with an online event and moderated panel discussion featuring several local thought leaders.
The discussion focused on how residents can work together to create a more just and equitable community.
According to the report, COVID-19 exacerbated existing inequalities and brought many pressing issues into sharp focus.
“Whether it be COVID-19 perpetuating issues like affordable housing or unemployment, increasing hate crimes or the traumatic legacy of residential schools, we are seeing a heightened awareness and the desire for people to become more engaged,” says Dr. White.
The report highlight six focuses. Housing, racial equality, well-being, gender equality, education, and food security.
The average price of rent in London increased by 7 per cent in 2020, and there are almost 6,000 individuals and families currently on the waitlist for social housing, and as of September over 1,300 individuals are experiencing homelessness.
“Good data is essential to informing social change efforts,” says Dr. White. “The London Vital Signs Data Hub is a long-term project that will require partnerships and collaboration of local organizations and government.”
LCF is inviting any local agencies who collect community-based data to contribute to this project.
“The goal is to track social trends over time and use that information to make positive changes that benefit our community” says Dr. White.