Frequently Asked Questions

Who can participate?

Community-led groups, agencies, coalitions, networks, or resident leaders focused on engaging with Indigenous peoples, equity-seeking groups, and/or vulnerable populations in the City of Toronto. Groups do not need to have charitable status.

What do we mean by "equity-seeking groups" or vulnerable populations?

Equity-seeking groups are residents who have been historically disadvantaged and/or systematically marginalized by multiple systems of oppression. They face significant barriers to equal access, opportunities, and resources.  

The list below provides examples of the specific communities and populations we are seeking to engage in this consultation process. However, it is not meant to be a complete list of who may be engaged. 

  • Indigenous
  • Black 
  • racialized
  • youth
  • women
  • seniors
  • LGBTQ2S+
  • newcomers (less than 5 years in Canada, refugees, migrants, undocumented peoples) 
  • people with disabilities (physical or mental and/or with pre-existing medical conditions
  • low income/fixed income, precariously employed, underemployed, or unemployed 
  • persons experiencing homelessness 
  • underhoused or precariously housed
  • consumer survivors
  • persons facing addiction challenges 
  • gender-based violence survivors 
  • incarcerated or formerly incarcerated persons
  • persons who face cultural or religious discrimination

What happens if I am approved to receive honorariums?

  • Successful applicants will be notified by July 3, 2020, about whether or not they have been approved, and the amount if applicable.
  • Honorariums of $20/participant may be provided for a maximum of 20 participants only.
  • Consultation Leaders are responsible for submitting consultation data through links provided in the Consultation Guide by July 24, 2020, at 5:00 p.m.
  • Consultation Leaders are required to submit a tracking sheet provided by SPT, providing first name, last name, and survey/consultation date for each participant.
  • SPT will disburse honorariums to Consultation Leaders in early August by mailed cheques (preferred option) or e-transfer.
  • Consultation leaders are responsible for safely dispersing honorariums to each resident who participated.

Can I still participate in SPT's process if I don’t receive honorarium support?

Applicants who do not receive honorarium support can still participate! You can still engage residents in the TORR consultation process and submit their input to us by July 24, 2020. We will include this input in our submission of aggregate data to TORR.

Groups or residents who want to participate regardless of whether they receive honorarium support are urged to begin their consultations as soon as possible to meet the July 24 deadline for input

Can I provide input to the TORR consultation in some other way than the SPT process? 

Anyone can provide feedback directly to TORR. TORR launched its consultation process several weeks ago, inviting residents to give feedback (by survey or email) by June 30, 2020. The City  has now extended this deadline to July 15. For more information, read about their process and submission guidelines.

Many residents from Indigenous populations, equity-seeking groups, and/or vulnerable populations were unaware of this process or the tight timeline for submission. As a result, the TORR subsequently decided to engage SPT to assist with outreach to these residents (with an extended deadline of July 24, 2020, and using survey questions that have been modified based on input from community partners).  


I am having trouble submitting my survey through the online link. When I tried to submit, I got an error, and lost all my information.

We recently made some changes to the survey to solve this error. We are noticing that some browsers experience more trouble than others. We would recommend using Firefox. Some browsers might time out if you are inactive for more than 5 minutes.

We recommend you copy and paste the survey questions and answers into a word document and fill the survey out in word first. After you finish, copy that information directly into the online survey - that way you don’t need to redo the survey when there is a technical issue. This also allows for your participants to have time to fully engage with the questions.

Please contact us if you experience any technical issues and we will do our best to support you.


What postal code do we provide for group discussions?

If all residents live in the same neighbourhood, including consultation leader, put postal code of consultation leader. If residents and consultation leader do not live in the same neighbourhood, then put N/A. Please send residents the demographic data form after you have finished your group discussion. 


Will Consultation Leaders have to provide a phone bill for data use to receive the honorarium support?

Social Planning Toronto does not need proof of any resources/supports used in the consultation process to receive the honorarium support. Therefore, no receipts are needed. We only require the tracking sheet.


Can Consultation Leaders do both group discussions and one on one surveys with participants?

Yes, you can conduct consultations both ways. If you are doing the group survey, make sure that you fill out the group discussion form and demographic data form afterwards.


How are you collecting personal data?

The Toronto Office of Recovery and Rebuild (TORR) is seeking input from Toronto residents on key priorities for the City’s rebuild and recovery process. This partnership will have a special focus on engaging Indigenous and equity-seeking groups, as well as historically marginalized and vulnerable populations. 

It’s important to hear from people about how they are impacted by COVID-19 and what they want to see in a fair recovery strategy for them, their community and the city. The demographic data form is optional, and is not linked to any one on one survey or group discussion forms. To ensure confidentiality, please do not include names, telephone numbers or full addresses in your survey or group discussion responses. All input submitted to SPT will be summarized by the City and posted to

Social Planning Toronto will not be sharing the information in the tracking sheet it receives from groups who had honorarium support – it will be kept for our private records only.


Is there an introductory script to set context for Consultation Leaders?

We now have a script available for anyone who needs it. Contact [email protected] to receive it.


How will the participants receive their $20 honorarium afterwards? 

Once the Consultation Leader finishes their consultations, they must send Social Planning Toronto the tracking sheet. Social Planning Toronto will provide a cheque (preferred option) or e-transfer to the Consultation Leader, and they are responsible for paying the residents. Please note the honorarium will be sent in August and onwards.


Is there Land Acknowledgement you suggest we use?

You may use the City’s land acknowledgement for Toronto or Scarborough, however, we encourage the consultation leaders to share their own relationship to this land (Turtle Island) and commitment to Indigenous peoples of Canada, as part of the land acknowledgement.


Instead of filling out the group survey form using our collective feedback and common themes etc, can we use our session to inform content for a letter?

Yes, you can use collective feedback to inform a letter to the City. We want to include all of the information from the surveys and story forms/letters in the data we provide to the City, so that all voices participating in this consultation process can be heard. Iif you are sending a letter to the City, CC Leah ([email protected]) on the e-mail, and we will include it in our data.


How did we allocate the honorariums for consultation leaders?

We received 175 applications and unfortunately did not have sufficient funds to support all applicants, and all total requests for funding and additional supports. For this consultation process, we wanted to engage as many different groups as possible and prioritize supports to resident led groups that are in need of additional supports. We recognize that this is a small amount for the consultation leaders' generous contribution of their time and effort. 


Can I provide a hard copy of the survey to participants rather than fill in the online surveys, as some participants do not have access to e-mail addresses?

We unfortunately cannot accept any data in a hard copy. If consultation leaders are engaging with participants who do not have internet or e-mail, they can call the participants on the phone and fill out the survey on their behalf. We recommend copy and pasting the survey into a word document and filling the survey in word first, then copying that information directly into the online survey. This way, there is a hard copy saved in case of any technical issues, and your participants have time to fully engage with the questions.


How is the city going to be addressing climate action priorities as there is 1 question in the survey?

The TORR is focused on several theme areas. One is called ‘Community and Strategic Alliances’, and the resident consultations that SPT is facilitating feed into that theme area. There is an entirely separate theme called ‘City Divisions, Agencies and Resilience/Climate Change’ and it has a corresponding engagement process that is also underway. However, the SPT survey included a question on climate change because it is a cross-cutting, fundamental issue that must be woven throughout the entire consultation process and across all stakeholders. 


Do I have to engage in consultations with people from one neighbourhood only, or can I engage in consultations in different neighbourhoods?

You can engage in consultations wherever you want.


Can I provide survey support in other languages and help with translation? Is there extra money for translation support specifically?

We encourage you to help participants with language barriers to help fill out the survey! Unfortunately, we do not have extra funding support for translation services. If there are other members of your group that can help with translation, we encourage you to work with them. Some groups, for example, are splitting the Consultation Leader honorarium between two people who are leading the work. 


Can I use my own Zoom account to host group discussion meetings?

Yes, you can use your own Zoom accounts. However, free Zoom accounts stop automatically after 40 minutes, so that is why we have a dedicated Zoom account for consultations. If you want to book a Zoom consultation for your group, email [email protected].


Many participants will have different needs and abilities. Does SPT have a list of people who can offer ASL interpretation? 

We do not have an SPT specific list of ASl interpreters, but here is a directory of interpreters from the Ontario Association of Sign Language Interpreters.


Is there a target amount of residents that the City and Social Planning Toronto is trying to target?

The City did not establish a minimum target number of people that would be engaged through the SPT process, but we are estimating responses from approximately 1500 residents. 


What if someone is in two different groups, and completes the survey twice?

We are not keeping track of if individuals fill out the survey twice. You are free to ask the person you’ve engaged with if they have done the survey already. It is up to the individual Consultation Leader if they want to check in with participants who may have filled out on behalf of two different groups.


What if we want to engage more than 20 participants?

If you want to engage more than 20 participants, you can reallocate the honorarium support to pay more people. You are required by SPT to pay at least 20 participants at least $20 each (unless stated otherwise in your approval letter) and if you received technology or accessibility funding, you must ensure that people receive that support if needed. Other than that, you can spend your honorarium funding support however you need to for your consultation process. For example, you can use some of the Consultation Leader honorarium to pay more participants. If you wish to change the way you allocate your honorarium support, please contact SPT first to make the request.


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