Background of the organization:
Common Wealth was founded in 2015 with the goal of expanding access to retirement security. Common Wealth partners with unions, associations, sectors, groups of employers, and other communities to design, build, and manage high-quality collective retirement plans for workers without access to traditional pensions. It has advised pension funds with collective assets under management of over $800 billion. Since its founding, Common Wealth has built a team of experienced pension professionals and partnered with governments, think tanks, and international financial institutions to improve retirement systems around the world.
On average, Canada’s 1.7 million non-profit and charity workers earn less than their counterparts in the public and private sectors do. The resulting income inequality and insecurity disproportionately affect women, and make it difficult for community organizations to attract and retain talented staff. One way to improve this situation is to improve access to workplace retirement plans. To address this, Common Wealth is developing a national, portable, retirement income plan for Canada’s non-profit and charitable sector called the Common Good Retirement Initiative.
Support from the Foundation will be used to continue outreach to nonprofit sector employers to secure additional commitments to offer the plan to employees, to develop financial education and literacy materials tailored for the unique needs of the sector’s workers and to conduct research and do advocacy around financial security for lower-and modest-income Canadians. Funds will also be used to explore how this model could offer similar benefits to workers in the so-called ‘gig economy’.