MANAGER – POLICY

MANAGER – POLICY

WHO WE ARE          

Founded in 1986, Prosper Canada is a national charity dedicated to expanding economic opportunities for Canadians living in poverty through program and policy innovation.

As Canada’s leading national champion of financial empowerment, we work with government, business, and community partners to develop and promote financial policies, programs and resources that transform lives and foster the prosperity of all Canadians.

Prosper Canada does not deliver services directly to people living on low incomes. Instead, we work with public, private and community sector partners to ensure quality financial empowerment (FE) supports (including effective policy and regulation) are available to all people living on a low income in Canada.

At Prosper Canada, we value being collaborative, human-centred, and forward-thinking. We recognize, accept, and celebrate our differences. We see the power in diversity, equity, and inclusion, and believe we can help everyone thrive by being our boldest true selves. Diversity is at the core of what we do and who we support to build financial health. Our financial empowerment efforts focus on equity-seeking groups including those living on low incomes, Indigenous Peoples, members of racialized communities, and people living with disabilities.

We strive to create a culture where all feel valued, respected, and a true sense of belonging. We are looking to bring diverse perspectives that represent the lived experience, needs and challenges of equity-seeking groups. Join us in supporting and empowering everyone in Canada to prosper.

THE OPPORTUNITY

Prosper Canada is seeking a dynamic and motivated manager to advance our policy and advocacy efforts. In this exciting new role, you will help inform policymakers of the financial challenges of people with low incomes in Canada and coordinate our efforts to identify and promote policy and regulatory solutions to these challenges, including expanding access to quality community financial help services through government programs and investments. Our policy efforts are primarily focused on the federal government, but we also work directly with the Government of Ontario and support our regional partners in their provincial/territorial policy and advocacy efforts.

You will work directly with our CEO, VP – Strategy and Impact, Research and Evaluation team, Marketing and Communications team, and key stakeholders from our national ABLE Financial Empowerment Network. This role reports to our Director, Impact and Innovation.

We value collaboration and partnership in everything we do and the following principles guide our policy and advocacy work:

  • We collaborate with diverse sectors and all levels of government to advance financial empowerment efforts nationally
  • We partner with community organizations that have deep knowledge and understanding of the needs of their communities and help us identify and understand priority issues and shape effective solutions
  • We work with researchers from all sectors to ensure our advice to governments is grounded in evidence on the needs of people with low incomes and effective solutions
  • We work with governments to identify common priorities and effective solutions, while not shying away from constructive criticism when appropriate
  • The policy changes we strive for tend to be bold and ambitious, but we understand change takes time and celebrate incremental gains along the way.

With COVID, we have focused our advocacy efforts on investments and policy and administrative changes needed to support vulnerable Canadians to weather this crisis and participate in an equitable and inclusive recovery. Here are some of the policy advocacy successes we are proud to have contributed to:

  • CRA rule changes to permit virtual tax-filing clinics, enabling more low-income individuals to file their taxes safely and access/retain critical income benefits
  • Extended tax-filing deadlines and other changes in benefits administration to keep federal income benefits flowing to vulnerable individuals unable to tax file on time
  • Financial Consumer Agency of Canada consideration of necessary “upstream” ecosystem changes in developing the next National Financial Literacy Strategy
  • Federal government commitment to auto-file taxpayers with simple returns (e.g., social assistance recipients with no employment income)
  • The formal inclusion of financial literacy and tax filing in Ontario’s modernized Social Assistance framework will govern future municipal social assistance delivery
  • New grant funding ($10M) for community organizations delivering CRA’s Community Voluntary Income Tax Program and dedicated Financial Empowerment funding through ESDC’s Social Development and Partnerships Program.

By joining our team, you would contribute to similar policy efforts. Some of our expected priorities over the short term include:

  • Resolving the issue of unmanageable CERB repayment debt
  • Closing the current gap in take-up of federal benefits by people with low incomes
  • Advocating for more comprehensive national monitoring and research regarding household financial health, including disaggregated data to enable exploration of disparities in financial health and drivers of financial vulnerability
  • Promoting more equitable federal investment in savings incentives across income groups and enhanced support for people with low incomes to build emergency savings.

Salary

The salary range for this position is $70,000-$80,000.

SUMMARY OF RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Monitor federal and Ontario government policy developments on priority issues and coordinate timely responses where appropriate
  • Synthesize feedback from internal and external stakeholders on priority issues and help translate into feedback and advice to federal and Ontario governments
  • Monitor federal and Ontario government budget cycles, lead development of pre-budget submissions and coordinate related advocacy
  • Lead development of submissions to federal and Ontario government public/ stakeholder consultations on relevant issues
  • Conduct policy research and analysis on priority issues and develop policy recommendations
  • Support the development of pre-election platform proposals and coordinate outreach to promote these to all political parties
  • Lead design and delivery of knowledge mobilization events (e.g. webinars, research symposia) aimed at policy audiences
  • Work collaboratively with Research and Evaluation team to identify and articulate policy considerations/implications arising from broader research initiatives
  • Lead writing of research reports and briefs targeted to policymakers, with support from the Research and Evaluation team
  • Prepare policy briefing notes and presentations as needed for engaging policymakers
  • Support CEO and VP, Strategy and Impact in engagements with senior policymakers
  • Build and steward your own relationships with key government officials
  • Chair and animate the national ABLE Financial Empowerment Network’s Policy and Research Action Group
  • Support policy advocacy efforts of community partners on selected priority issues
  • Prepare op-eds and media talking points on policy issues as needed.

EXPERIENCE AND COMPETENCIES       

If you don’t meet all our requirements (below) but believe your skillset and experience is applicable or transferable we would love to hear from you!

Apply if you meet most of these requirements:

  • 5+ years experience in a policy-related role
  • Demonstrated policy research and analysis skills
  • A clear understanding of the federal policy-making process (provincial government knowledge is a plus)
  • Successful track record of advancing policy change – from within the government or through advocacy
  • Experience coordinating collaborative policy and advocacy efforts with diverse stakeholders
  • Education or training in a related field. We’re open to hearing how your background helps set you up to work with us
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated skill in preparing succinct and compelling policy advocacy briefs, briefing notes and PowerPoint presentations
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate with diverse stakeholders both internally and externally (from government, non-profit, and private sectors)
  • Sensitive to the diverse needs and challenges faced by people living with low incomes, including but not limited to newcomers, Indigenous Peoples, members of racialized communities, people living with disabilities in Canada, people of all gender expression and sexual/romantic orientations, and those experiencing intersectionality
  • Strong networker skilled at mobilizing partners from all sectors to align and achieve results
  • Goal-oriented, but highly adaptive and open to diverse and innovative solutions
  • Experience managing up as you will work closely with CEO and VP, Strategy and Impact to develop and advance policy and advocacy goals
  • Experience in design and organization of knowledge mobilization events
  • Fluent in French and English.

Prosper Canada also values/welcomes:

  • Applicants from racialized groups including, black, Indigenous, and people of colour
  • Applicants of all gender expressions and sexual/romantic orientations, including queer, trans, non-binary, and people who identify as two-spirit
  • Applicants experiencing intersectionality
  • Your personal experience of living on a low income, being a newcomer, or living with a disability and the insights and perspectives this would bring to your work
  • Your understanding of the concepts of institutional and structural racism and bias and their impact on underserved and underrepresented communities
  • Experience working in financial empowerment
  • Quantitative analytical skills.

We encourage candidates to tell us about themselves in their cover letters and highlight how their lived experiences help them understand the needs and challenges faced by equity-seeking groups. We are committed to making accommodations for all candidates and staff with temporary or permanent disabilities.

APPLICATION DETAILS    

Application deadline:    July 25, 2021

Start date:         Fall 2021

Job location:     Our offices are located at 60 St. Clair Avenue E., Toronto but, for

this position, we are open to candidates based in the Toronto or Ottawa regions

Currently, our staff are working from home until health protocols allow for a safe return to the office with appropriate health and safety measures. We value in-person connection but expect many staff will want to blend in-office and remote work going forward. We look forward to discussing hybrid options with potential candidates.

Travelling: Ability to travel in Canada (10-20% of your time)

How to apply: Please email the following documents to Prosper Canada, info@prospercanada.org, subject line “Application for Manager, Policy”

  • Cover letter
  • Resume
  • 1 policy brief prepared by you
  • 1 policy briefing note prepared by you
  • 1 PowerPoint policy presentation prepared by you

If your prior experience did not include preparing public materials, only internal materials you cannot share for reasons of confidentiality, please let us know. You are welcome to prepare and submit a 1-2 page policy briefing note and 1 PowerPoint presentation (maximum 10 slides) on a relevant policy/advocacy topic of your choice instead.

We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Interviews with candidates will be conducted virtually. If you require any accommodations to have a successful interview, please let us know.