Our system of planning evolved out of the need to control infectious disease. This was resolved many decades ago by the provision of central water and sewer services, the separation of noxious land uses, and general improvements made to industrial processes.
Planning and health remain inextricably linked, however, the challenges today are chronic disease, our skyrocketing health care costs, and a host of issues (such as climate change and energy conservation), which are often interrelated with the built environments that we create.
“Healthy Communities” is emerging as a dominant public policy and research focus on the Canadian landscape. Driven by health organizations and led by the Heart and Stroke Foundation, Healthy Canada by Design (HCBD) is the primary interface between the planning and health professions – a national initiative that, in many ways, seeks to create a paradigm shift that may be as significant as that which occurred a century ago.
The Canadian Institute of Planners is an active partner in the Healthy Canada by Design CLASP initiative, which is led by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and largely funded by Health Canada via the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer. CLASP stands for “Coalitions Linking Action and Science for Prevention.” Under this initiative, in early 2010, CIP Council approved a partnership with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada to help mobilize our membership, provide input, monitor research, and help guide changes to planning practices.
Funding for the Healthy Canada by Design CLASP initiative, CIP’s Healthy Communities Program, and associated research and knowledge tools is provided by Health Canada via the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer and with project assistance provided by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
The CIP Healthy Communities section of the website provides background information on CIP’s healthy communities programs and partnerships. It also provides a gateway to research, processes, policies, and best practices that will help us plan and develop healthier communities.
The views expressed herein represent the views of the Canadian Institute of Planners and do not necessarily represent the views of the project funders.