Gender-based analysis plus
The CBSA has endorsed the following policy statement:
The CBSA will make Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+) an integral part of our policies, programs and initiatives to ensure an understanding of the impacts on gender and diversity, in order to make better decisions and achieve better results for our clients, stakeholders and all Canadians.
To fulfill this policy statement, the CBSA is currently using a distributed model of GBA+ responsibilities across the Agency, incorporating the following roles:
- The GBA+ Champion is responsible for promoting the understanding and use of GBA+ across the Agency, and for acting as the liaison at senior-level interdepartmental meetings and events
- The GBA+ Champion will institute a GBA+ Internal Working Group to ensure that a healthy and viable network of GBA+ information and best practices is available to all employees
- In fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the working group will conduct a review of its mandate and planned activities with the intent of determining how it can increase its contribution to the Agency’s ability to apply GBA+ lenses to its programs, policies and initiatives
- The GBA+ Responsibility Centre is situated within the Agency’s Strategic Policy Branch and is responsible for supporting the implementation of the Agency’s GBA+ policy, including increasing GBA+ information resources and providing strategic guidance to the rest of the Agency as it mainstreams GBA+ principles into common work practices and considerations in its programs and operations
- The GBA+ Responsibility Centre will work collaboratively with the GBA+ Internal Working Group to provide advice on cross-Agency priorities and issues in the implementation of GBA+, as well as to identify emerging issues in the use of GBA+ within the CBSA and the Government’s broader efforts.
- The GBA+ Responsibility Centre and GBA+ Champion will continue to work closely with initiative leads and offices responsible for reviewing submissions to central agencies in order to help enhance the analysis conducted when the Agency is completing mandatory GBA+ reviews
- CBSA senior officials are responsible for ensuring ongoing implementation of GBA+ across the Agency, as well as for supporting employees by providing the proper resources to normalize GBA+ into the Agency’s everyday work practices.
- CBSA employees are encouraged to familiarize themselves with their GBA+ responsibilities, which include undertaking basic training and understanding how to incorporate gender, diversity and inclusiveness considerations into their normal work processes in order to achieve equitable outcomes.
The CBSA routinely provides reporting to Women and Gender Equality Canada and/or the Treasury Board Secretariat on its various GBA+ activities.
Two employees directly support the work of the GBA+ Champion and GBA+ Responsibility Centre, along with numerous others on advisory committees and other governance bodies; however, an accurate count of full-time equivalents (FTEs) cannot be provided as GBA+ analysis is incorporated into various program and policy activities across the Agency.
Several CBSA officials have been provided with a tailored course on incorporating GBA+ into policies and programs, and how to support their employees in this process for management levels.
1. Modernizing Sex and Gender Information Practices
The CBSA is an active participant in the Policy Direction to Modernize the Government of Canada’s Sex and Gender Information Practices, which challenges departments and agencies to streamline the collection, use and display of sex and gender information, defaulting to gender wherever possible.
As a result of internal consultations held in fiscal year 2019 to 2020, 18 CBSA initiatives have been identified as requiring attention in order to comply with the Policy Direction. These initiatives include forms, applications, ID cards and client interactions. In fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the CBSA will review its practices and make adjustments accordingly to modernize these 18 initiatives in accordance with the Policy Direction.
2. Review of the Officer Induction Training Program
In fiscal year 2018 to 2019, the CBSA launched a new recruitment process for border services officers and began applying a GBA+ lens to this process. Based on the findings of a study conducted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the CBSA made several adjustments to its own processes incorporating best practices for recruitment. The development of the Agency’s new Officer Trainee Entrance Exam also included the application of a GBA+ lens.
The Agency’s recruitment initiatives are regularly reviewed to ensure that they capitalize on opportunities to participate in events tailored toward historically underrepresented groups such as young women in the fields of public safety and law enforcement.
In addition, the Agency continues to work closely with the Government’s security and intelligence community on targeted recruitment events for women, placing focus on how branding is perceived from a GBA+ perspective.
In fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the Agency’s goals will be to:
- Develop methods for collecting demographic information of applicants/recruits at each stage of the Officer Induction Model
- Develop a multi-year action plan to address GBA+ considerations in all phases of the Officer Induction Model
- Host targeted recruitment events across the country with other federal partners, with a concentration on the hiring of women. For example:
- Young Women in Public Safety
- Demystifying the Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation for Women
- Future Women in Law Enforcement Workshop
- Women on Fire
- Trades & Tech Career Exploration for Girls
- Jeunes femmes en sécurité publique
3. Exploration of Internal Training Needs and Horizontal Training Opportunities
The CBSA has endeavoured to use training as one means of attempting to mainstream GBA+ internally, including the following activities:
- Online training resources made available by Women and Gender Equality Canada
- Participation at events (hosted by the CBSA or partners) where government officials and/or academic experts present on such topics as positive spaces, gender-inclusive language and sensitivity to bias in analysis and policy/program implementation
- Specialized training for policy practitioners and operational officials to apply GBA+ principles to various relevant sample scenarios, developed in conjunction with the Centre for Intercultural Learning and other federal departments in the security and enforcement domain
In 2020–21, further to the last activity listed above, the CBSA (in collaboration with other federal departments in the security, intelligence and enforcement domain), will focus on identifying the needs of policy and operational practitioners and will begin to develop training that further empowers them to apply GBA+ lenses in their work in order to:
- Increase understanding of the value of GBA+, namely for better understanding of considerations in decision-making, data collection and reporting
- Challenge assumptions and increase sensitivity to existing and potential biases
4. Immigration Enforcement Policy Framework
As reported in fiscal year 2019 to 2020, the CBSA has committed to reviewing its immigration enforcement policy framework to identify ways in which the needs of vulnerable individuals could be better reflected throughout the immigration enforcement continuum.
The National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking includes funding for academic research to undertake comparative analyses of measures taken by other immigration enforcement and border agencies to account for the particular needs of victims of gender-based violence. In fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the CBSA intends to extend contracts and work with academia to complete the analyses in order to inform efforts to assess the impacts of gender-based violence in immigration enforcement and address identified gaps.
5. Evaluation of the Traveller Program
In fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the CBSA intends to evaluate GBA+ elements of its Traveller Program. In applying a GBA+ lens, the evaluation will assess the extent to which gender and other intersecting identity factors were considered in the design, development and implementation of traveller processing and enforcement activities, and how those activities impact diverse groups of travellers.
Reporting capacity and data
The CBSA does not anticipate providing any GBA+-related data in public reports for fiscal year 2020 to 2021.
At this time, the CBSA does not maintain an inventory of programs that collect and keep individual recipient microdata information to undertake GBA+ analysis. As part of its modernization efforts, the Agency has created a new resource responsible for developing an Agency-wide data analytics strategy, including foundational pieces aligned with all stakeholders and partners, as well as enhancing access to information for Canadians while protecting the personal information of Canadians. As this function matures, the CBSA anticipates being able to provide more consolidated data reports in the future.
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