Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

What is EDI?

EDI-related work aims to break down barriers to ensure that everyone – regardless of race, age, ability, culture, gender, sexual orientation and other diversity characteristics– is able to live, work and thrive in a safe and welcoming environment.

EDI  work values diversity and celebrates what makes each person unique, while emphasizing the humanity we all have in common.

Coquitlam’s Commitment to EDI

As an organization, Coquitlam is on a journey to better serve our vibrant and diverse community by incorporating an EDI  lens in all City business, including our policies and practices, the language we use, how we plan neighbourhoods, and how and what services we provide.

Coquitlam’s commitment to EDI includes:

  • Building an inclusive and welcoming community and workplace.
  • Seeking to address the inherent injustices and biases that hinder and harm some people while benefiting others.
  • Advancing equity for all residents, and especially for groups that have historically been marginalized, such as Indigenous Peoples, racialized or LGBTQ2S+ groups. These groups are often described as “equity-deserving groups.”

Taking Action on EDI

EDI work requires intentional action to rethink and change how systems and policies function.

Starting in 2022, Coquitlam began incorporating EDI principles in the annual Business Plans that guide priorities, decision-making and all work across the organization.

The City uses the Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Benchmarks, an international standard for planning and carrying out EDI work, to help guide City initiatives through four focus areas.

  • Foundational – Drive the Strategy: Ensuring EDI priorities are reflected in day-to-day work
  • Bridging – Align and Context: Using data to drive and enhance EDI work and communications
  • External – Listen to and Serve Community: Building relationships with external groups and removing barriers to service access
  • Internal – Attract and Retain People: Removing barriers to employment and advancement

A snapshot of Coquitlam’s 2022-23 activities and achievements and adapted Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Benchmarks framework is captured in this graphic (PDF).

See the tabs below for highlights of our work.

  1. Recruitment and Retention
  2. Culture Change
  3. Diversity
  4. Inclusion
  5. Accessibility

The City is reviewing how to reduce barriers within its staff recruitment and retention practices. Work currently underway includes:

  • Reviewing human resources policies and guidelines and making changes to support current and future employee inclusion
  • Updating recruitment webpages and promotional materials with the view to reducing barriers for equity-deserving groups
  • Reviewing and updating job advertising and expanding job-promotion channels
  • Enhancing relationships with local organizations and associations to partner on EDI initiatives
  • Reviewing employee benefits from an EDI perspective
  • Addressing any gaps in existing HR policies, such as the development of Trans Inclusion Guidelines or a Transition Policy

Check out the City’s Recruitment and Retention EDI Action Plan 2023-2026, detailing the actions to help support this important work within our organization.

Removing Barriers for Council Candidates

Coquitlam was one of the first communities in B.C. to adopt leave procedures for Council members that aim to remove systemic and financial barriers for equity-deserving groups wishing to participate in public office. 

The City provides Council members up to 16 weeks of paid leave (or the remainder of the term, whichever occurs first) for maternity and/or parental leave, or to provide compassionate care or caregiving support to someone considered to be family who is critically ill or needing end-of-life care.

The City also offers a pension benefit to Council members to further reduce potential financial barriers for those running for office. This benefit is calculated based on years of service at a rate guided by the Municipal Pension Plan. The start date for all Council members, including those re-elected, is the beginning of the next term.

Report to Council, June 13, 2022 – Reducing Barriers to Local Public Office Participation (PDF)

  1. Learning Resources
  2. Anti-Racism
  3. LGBT2SQ+
  4. Reporting Hate Crimes

Colouring Pages

If you or your family members love colouring, we have a series of downloadable colouring sheets highlighting Coquitlam’s inclusivity statements and the 2023 Street Banner program designs:

And if you’re picking up crayons, consider also picking up the ‘Colors of the World’ pack, which contains 24 skin tone crayons representing people of the world.. They can be ordered online but we encourage you to consider buying them from local stores such as London Drugs, Michaels and dollar stores.


The City of Coquitlam is committed to building a welcoming and inclusive community for all. If you would like to share your thoughts and experiences with us, please use our Feedback Form.