Good jobs and better communities through social procurement on Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast

March 12, 2019, Victoria, BC – Communities across Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast will benefit from an initiative launched today to change how local governments purchase goods and services as part of the worldwide movement of social procurement. The Coastal Communities Social Procurement Initiative (CCSPI) aims to better leverage tax dollars to achieve positive social outcomes for communities throughout the coast.

“This important initiative allows local communities to strengthen our economies and get good value for taxpayer dollars,” said Mayor Lisa Helps and Tofino Mayor Josie Osborne, Steering Committee Co-Chairs. “These funds need to be spent anyway but the way they are allocated can have significant and long-lasting positive impacts on communities throughout Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast.”

Every year, local governments on Vancouver Island and coastal communities award contracts for goods and services valuing approximately $1.5 billion annually. Social procurement means that at the same time as this money is spent on improving communities local community benefits delivered through procurement will be realized through economic development, local employment, increased affordability and greater access to services. Industry partners that provide services to government also stand to benefit from social procurement.  

The CCSPI includes industry partners like the Vancouver Island Construction Association. 

“The construction industry plays important role in social procurement because we can provide employment and training opportunities for a wide-variety of populations,” said Rory Kulmala, CEO, Vancouver Island Construction Association. “This can benefit communities by promoting apprenticeship and skilled labour opportunities while diversifying the available employment options for disadvantaged peoples in your community.”

Social procurement is being advanced across Canada, in cities such as Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton, and at the provincial and federal government level. Social procurement is also a best practice in countries throughout the world including the United States and United Kingdom.

All local governments and First Nations communities on Vancouver Island the Sunshine Coast are eligible for membership. Current CCSPI participating communities and partners include:


  • City of Victoria
  • District of Tofino
  • Town of Qualicum Beach
  • Cowichan Valley Regional District
  • City of Campbell River
  • Town of Ladysmith
  • Village of Cumberland
  • City of Powell River
  • Town of Gibsons


  • Vancouver Island Construction Association
  • Scale Collaborative
  • Buy Social Canada
  • Presentations Plus

*Spokespeople from each community and partner are available to media, as identified below.

For more information:



Rory Kulmala, Chief Executive Officer
Vancouver Island Construction Association
250.727.2497 |

Trisha Lees
Rep Lab Communications
250-857-5655 |

Mayor Lisa Helps, Steering Committee Co-Chair

Mayor Josie Osborne, Steering Committee Co-Chair

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