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Peer organizations welcome Atlas to become more involved in public policy work

Recognizing the importance of influencing public policy on improving Veteran and Family mental health and well-being, in 2023 the Atlas Institute for Veterans and Families mapped out three interrelated foundational projects related to public policy. With guidance from consulting group Sullivan Strategic Solutions, the three projects were initiated to identify existing policies and associated gaps, and to set priority areas for Atlas that would result in high impact for Veterans and Families. These foundational projects are the stepping stones required before launching into the public policy space.

The three interrelated foundational projects are:

  1. A public policy scan of academic and grey literature specific to mental health and well-being policies and policy recommendations that impact Veterans and Families.
  2. An engagement process consisting of a series of conversations with stakeholders across Canada with similar mandates as intermediary organizations.
  3. An internal public policy framework that will guide Atlas staff on how public policy work will occur and where Atlas will position itself, based on Canadian and international evidence and leading practices.

A new report released by Atlas summarizes conversations from the engagement process. The engagement sessions took place from April to August of 2023 with senior leaders from 14 health and mental health organizations.

The report highlights common practices of these organizations when doing public policy work, approaches they have found effective as well as their recommendations for priority areas in Veteran and Family public policy.


Overview of five practices that make for effective public policy work:

  • Collaborating with the “owner” of the policy
  • Developing and sharing evidence-based resources
  • Engaging people with lived experience
  • Maintaining a positive relationship with funding bodies
  • Partnering with peer organizations when possible

Summary of five priority areas for public policy related to Veteran and Families:

  • Conducting research
  • Equitable access and supports
  • Knowledge on evidence-based treatments
  • Needs of the Family in their own right
  • Upstream prevention

Learn more and download the report at