The Real Cost of City Cuts: A Health Equity Impact Assessment


Policy development can be complex and unintended adverse consequences can easily result. The Wellesley Health Equity Lens is an evidence-based tool designed to help policy makers to assess the impact of proposed policy and program changes on population health and health inequities. The Lens is a high-level Health Equity Impact Assessment that:

• Analyzes whether a proposed policy or program change could have a different or inequitable impact on health within the community;

• Identifies what groups or neighbourhoods would be adversely and inequitably affected, and how; and

• Sets out what can be done to mitigate and avoid these adverse and inequitable effects on population health.

We applied this analytical tool to three key policy and program changes proposed by the city: reducing child care funding and subsidies, eliminating the Hardship Fund, and limiting the development of affordable housing to completing only what has already been approved and funded. 

Publication date: 
Nov 2011
Steve Barnes
Wellesley Institute
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