School of Policy Studies

School of Policy Studies
School of Policy Studies

Social Policy is Back!

Sherri Torjman

Friday, March 4, 2016,  12:00 pm 
Robert Sutherland Hall, 138 Union Street, Room 202

** Light lunch starts at 11:30 AM             All are Welcome

Sherri Torjman | March 4, 2016


Sherri Torjman

Caledon Institute of Social Policy





The 2016 Budget is expected to include several significant announcements that will have a positive impact on social well-being.  It stands in stark contrast to the federal Budgets of the past ten years in which the social policy well had been largely dry.  The talk will focus on key social policy highlights: the new Canada Child Benefit, a National Poverty Strategy and social infrastructure. 


Sherri Torjman, Vice-President of the Caledon Institute of Social Policy, has advised governments in a wide range of social policy areas.  She was a member of Prime Minister Trudeau’s Economic Advisory Council for the past two years.  She helped design many of the proposals, including the Canada Child Benefit, now being implemented in Canada. 

Over the past 30 years,  Sherri has written four books on disability policy.  She has authored and co-authored close to 300 publications on welfare reform, disability income and supports, caregivers, long-term care, employment policy and community-based poverty reduction.

In 1986, Sherri wrote the first comprehensive national analysis on social assistance for the National Council of Welfare.  Welfare in Canada: The Tangled Safety Net explained and calculated rates of assistance for all provinces.

Sherri coined and wrote extensively about the term “welfare wall.”  It was the result of a study on the interaction of the welfare and income tax systems conducted for the Ontario Fair Tax Commission.  The welfare wall has been a seminal concept, which is cited in provincial poverty reduction initiatives and has guided welfare reform throughout the country.

At Caledon, she helped formulate the concept of a new architecture for Canada’s income security system.   She has helped design a Basic Income for persons with disabilities.   

Sherri worked with two national partner organizations over a ten-year period to develop and carry out the policy work related to the Vibrant Communities initiative in which 15 cities throughout the country were joined together in a learning partnership to find local solutions to reduce poverty.  

Sherri co-chaired the Technical Advisory Committee on Tax Measures for Persons with Disabilities that reported to the Minister of Finance and Minister of National Revenue.  She worked on the House of Commons Committee on Disability, the House of Commons Committee on Child Care and the Royal Commission on New Reproductive Technologies.