Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Niagara Region recognizes its important role in addressing these barriers as an employer and a service provider.

The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan 2023-2027 has been developed with the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Committee, internal staff and community members. The plan outlines 43 specific actions to make Niagara more inclusive, welcoming and free from discrimination.

Guiding principles

  • Accountability

    Niagara Region is committed to achieving the goals set out in the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan and holding staff at all levels accountable for the multiple initiatives.

  • Collaboration

    Niagara Region is committed to working with the local area municipalities, community organizations and community members to achieve the desired outcomes of this plan. The collaboration of all diverse groups is essential for the success of this work.

  • Community expertise

    Niagara Region recognizes that people with different lived experiences are the experts in understanding the barriers they experience, have creative solutions, and are essential partners for achieving the desired outcomes of this plan.

  • Evidence informed

    Niagara Region is committed to using evidence from other municipalities, academic sources, best practice guides and community expertise to inform all work associated with the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan.

  • Humility

    Cultural humility is the cornerstone of this work, to achieve true equity and inclusion. We must all be willing to humbly accept that we do not have all the answers. Niagara Region commits to:

    • Life-long learning
    • Critical self-reflection
    • Challenging power imbalances
    • Developing mutually beneficial partnerships
    • Maintaining institutional consistency and accountability
  • Transparency

    Niagara Region commits to providing transparent, clear and accurate reports on the progress of this action plan on a regular basis.

Focus areas

  • A: Inclusive workplace culture, leadership and accountability

    Enable an organization where leaders are accountable and provide an environment where staff and community members feel heard and respected

    Internal goal: Increase per cent of Niagara Region staff who report that they feel heard, respected and valued by their managers by five per cent

    External goal: Increase per cent of community members that feel they are reflected and heard by locally elected officials by 20 per cent

  • B: Increased understanding and humility through learning

    Provide knowledge, skills and learning opportunities for staff, councillors, volunteers and community members to increase their ability to understand and use diversity, equity and inclusion principles, and demonstrate cultural humility

    Internal goal: Increase the knowledge, skills and competencies of staff, councillors and volunteers to be equipped to support the diverse population of Niagara by 10 per cent

    External goal: Increase the knowledge, skills and competencies of training participants in the community on diversity, equity and inclusion, and cultural humility by 10 per cent

  • C: Diverse workforce reflective of Niagara's community

    Use evidence-informed best practices to recruit, hire, retain and promote a more diverse workforce

    Internal goal: Use a variety of inclusive strategies to hire, retain and promote the workforce of Niagara Region to reflect the region's diverse population based on the Canadian Census

    External goal: Increase percentage of people that believe employers in Niagara do a good job of attracting, retaining and promoting people of diverse backgrounds to leadership positions by 20 per cent

  • D: Programs and services meet the needs of everyone

    Provide evidence-informed best practices and resources to incorporate diversity, equity and inclusion principles into Niagara Region programs and services

    Internal goal: One hundred per cent of Niagara Region divisions have incorporated diversity, equity and inclusion principles into their work

    External goal: At least 70 per cent of program participants believe that Niagara Region programs and services are meeting their needs

  • E: Addressing discrimination

    Review and revise policies and processes, in partnership with diverse communities, to address and reduce discrimination experienced in Niagara

    Internal goal: Increase the diversity, equity and inclusion score for Niagara Region employees by five per cent

    External goal: Decrease the per cent of people that experience discrimination in Niagara by 20 per cent

  • F: Inclusive communication

    Provide clear, inclusive, representative communication for staff and community members to showcase significant dates, provide key information and recognize leaders that advance diversity, equity and inclusion

    Internal goal: Ninety per cent of Niagara Region staff feel represented and included in diversity, equity and inclusion-related communications and initiatives

    Internal goal: Eighty per cent of Niagara Region's communication platforms are inclusive and accessible for all community members


Cassie Ogunniyi
Manager, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Indigenous Relations
905-980-6000 ext. 3226
Email Cassie Ogunniyi


Diversity: The presence of differences in the lived experiences and perspectives of people

Equity: When everyone receives fair treatment, access, opportunity and advancement in all areas of life

Inclusion: The creation of welcoming spaces and opportunities for everyone to participate and succeed

Significant dates calendar

Find and commemorate cultural, religious and other important events.

Hire for diversity

Learn how to increase diversity and inclusion in recruitment, hiring and promotion with our Human Resources Best Practices Guidebook.

Background research reports

Based on the staff and community research conducted in 2021, five reports have been completed. The Data Summary Report combines the key details from the other four reports.

As Niagara continues to grow and welcome new people, communities are becoming more diverse. It's important that diverse community members feel welcome and included. Welcoming communities that are free from discrimination lead to positive health and well-being for all residents and visitors.

Benefits of a diverse workforce

A diverse workforce with true equity and inclusion:

  • Strengthens the reputation of the organization
  • Creates healthy and respectful workplaces
  • Improves employee attraction and retention
  • Enhances innovation
  • Increases organizational performance
  • Leads to more effective programs and services

Based on focus groups and surveys done in Niagara we know that many people in Niagara face barriers and exclusion. This can be due to their race, immigrant status, disability, religion, gender, sexuality, age and other factors that are unique to each person.

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