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Speakers and workshops

We're excited to announce an amazing line up of speakers, workshops, and organizations who are confirmed for the BC Health Coalition 2017 Conference.

Keynote Speakers

Empowering Indigenous women + families in health services and healing

Friday, Oct 27, 12 pm - 1 pm, Theatre

Elder Roberta PriceElder Roberta Price from the Snuneymuxw and Cowichan First Nations has worked tirelessly over the past three decades to educate and raise awareness about issues affecting First Nations people in a positive, informative, and productive manner. She does this by working as a First Nations educator, sharing her traditional knowledge in schools, within the community, health facilities, and with First Nations people.


Jenny MorganJenny Morgan is from the Gitxsan First Nations, and has worked at the BC Children’s + Women’s hospitals since 2015 at the Director for Indigenous Health. As well, Jenny is a sessional instructor at the UBC School of Social Work. She completed her BSW from UBC in 2003, MSW from UVic in 2014, and is currently completing her doctorate in education through the University of Western Ontario, focusing on organizational leadership.

Featured Panel:

Revolutionizing rural and urban access to primary health care in B.C.: moving toward patient-centred, team-based care rooted in the communities it serves

Friday, Oct 27, 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm, Theatre
 
  • Marcy CohenMarcy Cohen, moderator, has been involved in social justice work as a professional and volunteer for most of her adult life. She has over 35 years of experience working as health and social policy researcher and educator. Her research has focused primarily on community health restructuring, strategies for improving public health services, and workforce equity issues. Now retired, Marcy continues to support the work of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and volunteers for a number of community organizations, including the BC Health Coalition. Most recently, she led the Raising the Profile Project, that has been instrumental in raising the profile of the Community Based Seniors Services (CBSS) sector in BC.
  • Colleen FullerColleen Fuller is a health policy analyst and a long-time member of the Board of Directors of the REACH Community Health Centre in East Vancouver. She has been an advocate for publicly-funded and -provided health and social services and has a long history of campaigning against privatization. Colleen is also a co-founder of PharmaWatch Canada which works for safe, effective and affordable medicines in Canada.

  • Dr. Margaret McGregorDr. Margaret McGregor is a family physician who worked at Mid Main Community Health Centre for 25 years. She now works with a home-based primary care service for seniors unable to access usual primary care due to advanced frailty (Home ViVE ). She is the Director of the UBC Dept. of Family Practice, Community Geriatrics and a research associate with the VCHRI’s Centre for Clinical Epidemiology & Evaluation and the UBC Centre for Health Services & Policy Research.
  • Ed StaplesEd Staples, President of Support Our Health Care - Princeton is a retired teacher with over 35 years experience as an educator and administrator. Mr. Staples taught for twelve years in Alberta and British Columbia schools and for six years served as Education Consultant for Edmonton Public Schools. His experience includes seventeen years teaching overseas in Saudi Arabia, Chile, and Japan. In 2008, he moved to the Tulameen River Valley near Princeton where he became involved as a public health advocate focusing on rural healthcare issues. He is President of the Support Our Health Care Society of Princeton and an active member of the Princeton Health Care Steering Committee, the South Okanagan Similkameen Community Healthcare Coalition, and the British Columbia Health Coalition Steering Committee.

  • AnitaA Chinese-German immigrant to Canada, Anita Shen is currently studying to be a nurse. She is a resident of Chinatown and a former youth in government care, and honoured to be living and learning on the unceded territory of the Squamish, Musqueam, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples.
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  • KerrieKerrie Watt is a Youth Mental Health & Substance Use Prevention Educator with Vancouver Coastal Health at the newly opened Foundry North Shore. She has worked in this field for over 25 years and the North Shore community for the last 10 years. Kerrie has been involved in numerous projects involving knowledge translation, health promotion, community capacity building and engagement initiatives related to youth, mental health and substance use. She played a pivotal role in the development and launch of the new program at Foundry and continues to promote upstream approaches to encourage better client and family centred service provision in the area of youth and youth adult health and wellness.

 

Workshops

 

Pharmacare: The case for a national drug plan and how we can organize to win it

Friday, Oct 27, 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm, Board Room (2nd Floor)
 

Description: Did you know 3.5 million Canadians can’t afford to fill their prescriptions? Right now, Canada is the only country with a public health care plan not to include prescription drug coverage. The Council of Canadians, the BC Health Coalition, and other organizations are organizing to change that. Dr. Steve Morgan will present the case for a national drug plan and Harjap Grewal will facilitate a timely action-oriented discussion on how we can organize to win it.

Dr. Steve Morgan

Dr. Steve Morgan is a Professor in the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia. He is also the founder of Pharmacare 2020, a campaign to promote evidence-informed conversation about the future of prescription drug coverage in Canada. Dr. Morgan has published over 150 peer-reviewed research papers on pharmaceutical policies. He has advised governments in Canada and has twice served as Canada’s representative on pharmaceutical pricing and innovation committees of the World Health Organization. Dr. Morgan has received awards for his work from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, the Canadian Medical Association, McMaster University, and the University of British Columbia.

Harjap Grewal, Council of Canadians, is Regional Organizer for the Council of Canadians on issues of corporate power, free trade agreements, the environment, and public policy. He is also active in migrant justice, and anti-capitalist and Indigenous solidarity movements.

 

The Time is Now: A Poverty Reduction Plan for BC

Friday, Oct 27, 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm, Arts and Crafts Room

DescriptionTrish Garner, Community Organizer of the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition, will provide inspiration and practical tools to support you in becoming a champion for change in tackling the root causes of poverty. Moving from problems to solutions, Trish will highlight the success of other provinces in taking a comprehensive, preventative approach to poverty and focus on what we can collectively do about poverty in BC. Featuring a variety of ways to support the new government's commitment to a poverty reduction plan through community engagement, public education and effective advocacy, Trish provides a space for everyone to get involved.

TrishTrish Garner is the provincial lead for the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition.  She is a tea swilling Brit with a passion for social justice. As the Community Organizer of the BCPRC, a broad-based network of over 400 organizations throughout BC, she focuses on communications, outreach and community engagement to raise awareness about the root causes of poverty and inequality, and how we can collectively tackle them. She has a PhD in gender, sexuality and women’s studies from SFU and continues to work on LGBTQ issues.  Trish lives with her partner and their three young children in East Vancouver.

 

How to promote quality of care in residential care facilities

Friday, Oct 27, 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm, Seniors Lounge
 

Description: This workshop will explore the value of the community voice provided by independent family councils within residential care facilities.  It will also reveal the many roadblocks that family members experience when trying to promote quality of care and examine Ministry of Health regulatory language that permits it to happen.  We will build strategies to convince the Ministry of Health to guarantee a voice for family councils in decisions affecting residents' care and quality of life.

Kim Slater

Kim Slater became a motivated seniors advocate after his mother entered residential care in 2001.  To improve quality of care for seniors, he helped build a number of Family Councils, and then networked with other existing councils to help formally establish the Vancouver Island Association of Family Councils (2010).  This regional association is trying to convince the Ministry of Health to require all provincial facilities to promote and support their own independent council, and to guarantee each council a collective voice in decisions that affect quality of care for residents.  They are also requesting the establishment and recognition of regional associations within all Health Authorities.

Lou Black

Lou Black is a Research and Policy Analyst for the Hospital Employees’ Union (HEU). She holds a B.A. in Economics and Women’s Studies from Simon Fraser University, and an M.A. in Community and Regional Planning from the University of British Columbia. Her research has focused on working conditions in health care, long-term care service delivery, and the integration of community and labour organizing. Lou serves on the BC Health Coalition’s Home and Community Care Committee. She has been with the HEU for the last ten years, working to advance healthcare workers’ rights and improve the quality of healthcare services in British Columbia (BC), Canada. HEU represents 49 000 healthcare workers across BC.

 

Sanctuary Health 

Friday, Oct 27, 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm, Adult Lounge
 

Description: This workshop explores negotiations of power in community engagement, direct action, and policy advocacy. A Sanctuary Health organizer will discuss:
1. Challenges in building inclusive movements that meaningfully amplify the voices of people with precarious immigration status especially undocumented people;
2. Successes and failures in using a direct action strategy with a major provincial health authority; and
3. Successes and challenges with a campaign to ensure MSP for babies with parents with precarious immigration status.

Byron CruzByron Cruz is an organizer with Sanctuary Health Sanctuary, a grassroots community group. Sanctuary Health deploys direct action, movement-building, community-engagement, and direct support strategies to advocate for access to services for all regardless of immigration status or documentation. 

 

Health care: The Price is Right

Saturday, Oct 28, 10:00 am to 11:15 am, Seniors Lounge
 

Description: The youth-driven organization Check Your Head has been partnering with the BC Health Coalition for 7 years to hold fun, informative, and action-oriented workshops with young people across B.C. Along the way, we’ve learned a lot about ways to talk with people of all ages about public health care issues in a way that is accessible and helps build power for positive change.

Join us as we share these learnings, and try out our interactive activities that ask the questions:
- What makes a healthy community?
- How does Canada’s public health care system work?
Telka- What does private participation in health care mean for public health? 

Telka Pesklevits is third-year student in communication and anthropology with a focus on health and gender and the policies related to them. On campus she facilitates workshops as a peer health educator, and she has also facilitated workshops on topics such as consent and sexual health within the Vancouver school district and the greater community. Telka is working towards making a change about people's understanding of health and wellbeing in the community and through future changes to policies.

Anita

A Chinese-German immigrant to Canada, Anita Shen is currently studying to be a nurse. She is a resident of Chinatown and a former youth in government care, and honored to be living and learning on the unceded territory of the Squamish, Musqueam, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples.

 

Telling stories that resonate, activate and win 

Saturday, Oct 28, 10:00 am to 11:15 am, Adult Lounge
 

Description: Most of us agree that story is a core element of good campaigns. But what about facts? In this workshop, we'll explore the importance of story in creating resonant campaigns that inspire action. We'll talk about how how facts and story work together - in the right order, at the right time - to inspire the action you need to win. We'll touch on cognitive science and behavioural economics and debunk a few myths about people and decisions. Most importantly, we'll dive into your story and start the work that sits at the centre of your capacity to inspire action.

TovahTovah Paglaro is gumboot wearing, literature devouring, eco-mama who tells stories for the love of it and for a living. For the last ten years, Tovah has been leading teams that design and implement interventions that inspire people to take action on big ideas. As Director of Avalanche Strategy, Tovah brings a passion for strategic analysis and systems thinking to solutions based projects at the nexus of strategy and story. Working with candidates, causes and companies in Canada and the USA, Avalanche Strategy empowers leaders to resonate, activate and win.

 

 

Starting and Strengthening Your Local Health Coalition

Saturday, Oct 28, 10:00 am to 11:15 am, Room 102

 

Description: Are you looking to start your local health advocacy organization or coalition? Curious about how the BC Health Coalition works and can benefit your local organizing efforts? Join us for a hands-on workshop as we dive into successes, lessons learned, resource sharing, and building networks in building organizations and coalitions.  Note that you do not have to be part of an organization or coalition currently to participate.

AdamAdam Lynes-Ford, BC Health Coalition Campaigner, brings over a decade of experience as a campaigner, strategist and organizer for positive social change. Adam is board co-chair of Catherine White Holman Wellness Centre, which provides low-barrier services to trans and gender diverse people. He was formally the National Director for the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition. In his past position as Education Director for Check Your Head: the Youth Global Education Network, he co-developed the BC Health Coalition’s Check Up project, an initiative to educate and engage youth in BC around the issue of public health care. Adam has served as a board member and volunteer for numerous education, public health and environmental organizations. 

NatNat Lowe joined the BC Health Coalition as Organizer in July 2017. Previously, Nat worked in outreach and communications at the BC Civil Liberties Association and as a community organizer at Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles. Also, Nat organizes with Chinatown Action Group, a collective of Chinese people of all ages in Vancouver Chinatown building power with and engaging poor and working class residents. On his free time, Nat loves playing ultimate frisbee, hiking B.C.’s beautiful mountains, and grilling spicy chicken wings.

 

Community Consultation - Building on Strengths, Acting on Challenges

Saturday, Oct 28, 10:00 am to 11:15 am, L'Chaim Room
 

Description: Healthcare delivery is complex. Each community, shaped by a unique history, geographic location and social context, has strengths and needs that collectively make up its capacity for care. When healthcare needs outweigh capacities, communities reach critical points requiring focused attention. Such has been the case in the community of Princeton where the Support Our Health Care (SOHC) Society was formed to better understand and support the community’s need for change. They organized a research based consultation to solicit the perspectives and experiences of Princeton citizens and to glean the ‘story’ from the community’s perspective. Discussion in this workshop will focus on how participants might initiate similar initiatives in their communities.

NienkeNienke Klaver is a retired musician and music educator, now living in Princeton. She got involved in healthcare in 2012, when Interior Health announced closures of the local ER. She is a founding member and Secretary of the Support Our Health Care Society of Princeton. She also serves on the BC Health Coalition Finance Committee.

Ed

Ed Staples, President of Support Our Health Care - Princeton is a retired teacher with over 35 years experience as an educator and administrator. Mr. Staples taught for twelve years in Alberta and British Columbia schools and for six years served as Education Consultant for Edmonton Public Schools. His experience includes seventeen years teaching overseas in Saudi Arabia, Chile, and Japan. In 2008, he moved to the Tulameen River Valley near Princeton where he became involved as a public health advocate focusing on rural healthcare issues. He is President of the Support Our Health Care Society of Princeton and an active member of the Princeton Health Care Steering Committee, the South Okanagan Similkameen Community Healthcare Coalition, and the British Columbia Health Coalition Steering Committee.

 

We’re in this together: Working toward culturally appropriate care for all seniors

Saturday, Oct 28, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, Seniors Lounge

Description: Providing culturally appropriate care – care that aligns with seniors’ values, beliefs and ways of life – is key to the wellbeing of older adults. Without it, seniors are often left isolated and uncomfortable in care settings. B.C. is one of the most culturally diverse places in Canada. What does this mean for seniors and their loved ones, what models of care are working well, and how can we work together to ensure culturally appropriate care is there for elders in B.C. when we need it?

ArunArun Mehta was born in Mumbai (Bombay), India and studied in medical school there.  Later, Arun went to the UK for further experience and came to St. John’s Newfoundland in 1966.  Mehta specialized in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation in Winnipeg and worked at Rehabilitation Centre.  Mehta moved to Los Angeles and was on the faculty of UCLA School of Medicine and retired as Associate Clinical Professor.  After retirement, Mehta moved to Vancouver and have been member of Seniors Advisory Committee of Vancouver City Council (Ret.), Advisory Committee of Vancouver Coastal Health (Ret.), Board Member of Metro Vancouver  Cross-Cultural Seniors Network and member of the Seniors Care Campaign Working Group of BC Health Coalition.

SherrySherry Ogasawara currently serves as Health Services Vice President of the BC Government and Service Employees’ Union (BCGEU). Working for the Northern Health Authority in Prince George as a health science professional, she is a respected population health dietitian, fitness expert, and local media personality. Her experience in health service delivery encompasses multiple areas of practice including acute care, long-term care, rehabilitation and prevention. She currently serves as a member of BCGEU’s Provincial Executive women’s committee and has recently been appointed to the Provincial Health Services Authority Board of Directors. Outside of her work with the BCGEU, Sherry is a community volunteer and passionate advocate for nutrition, fitness, and healthy lifestyles.

Mohinder GrewalMohinder Grewal has dedicated his service to the well-being of immigrants and Visible Minorities and to a just society in which all are welcome. He has worked in the field of race relations, immigrant services and cultural and social policy development. He has served on various boards and committees that safeguard the well-being of immigrants, Visible Minorities and now, seniors. His involvement with seniors’ issues spans from his days as vice-chair of the B.C. Seniors Advisory Council, BC Premier’s Council on Seniors’ Issues, member of BC Review Committee, New Horizons Program and member, United Way Provincial Advisory Committee, “Better at Home”. Currently Mohinder is a member of the City of Richmond Seniors’ Advisory and Intercultural Advisory Committees; Vice-President, Metro Vancouver Cross-Cultural Seniors Network Society; director on the COSCO executive as well as a member of its Health Committee and Vice-President, 411 Seniors’ Centre Society.  In 2015 he was appointed to the B.C. Seniors Advocate’s Council of Advisors. He is a long time member of the Provincial Committee on Cultural Diversity and Policing. In 2012 Mohinder was the recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.  

 

Building Opposition to Private Care: A Case Study

Saturday, Oct 28, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, L'Chaim Room

Description: Since its formation in September 2016, Protect Public Health Care - Sunshine Coast has spearheaded opposition to Vancouver Coastal Health’s decision to privatize long-term care on the Sunshine Coast. Coalition members Wendy Hunt and Ian McLatchie will share experiences from the group’s highly successful campaign to mobilize support for enhanced care, continued public ownership and a meaningful process of community engagement by the health authority.

Wendy HuntWendy Hunt is a long time resident of the Sunshine Coast and was the Director of Nursing at St. Mary’s Hospital for 18 years. She spent an additional ten years as an addictions specialist in the Home Detox program.  She retired after a
45 year career in health care.  Wendy serves on the boards of the Sunshine Coast Healthcare Auxiliary and the Sunshine Coast Festival of the Written Arts and is chair of the Municipal Pensions Plan Retirees Association.

Ian McLatchie

Before moving to the Sunshine Coast in 2007, Ian McLatchie was a media and journalism teacher in Toronto. In addition to his work with Protect Public Health Care - Sunshine Coast, he has served on the boards of the Festival of the Written Arts, Laboratorio Arts Society and the Coast Film Society.

 

Catherine White Holman Wellness Centre: Community-centred care for trans and gender non-binary people

Saturday, Oct 28, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, Adult Lounge

Description: This presentation discusses the beginnings and evolution of the Catherine White Holman Wellness Centre, an interdisciplinary and low barrier health and wellness center for trans and gender non-binary people. The intention of this discussion is to pass on information to others working in social justice and health equity realms in BC. We will discuss how the center came about, why it was and is still needed, and how the mere existence of the clinic changed the medical landscape in transgender health care and access.

Fin

Fin Gareau is a trans and Two-Spirit nurse originally from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, who fully embraces the importance of community reciprocity. He began his queer and trans activism in the early 2000’s facilitating the Safe Spaces youth group in the Kootenays, and delivering trans workshops to rural social service agencies. He then began volunteering with the Trans Youth Drop-in and coordinated the program for over 8 years. He has worked with gender diverse and questioning youth and their families for over 15 years. Fin recently completed his Master of Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner degree and has a strong passion for working with gender diverse and Two-Spirit people. Recognizing the need to create more trans specific and inclusive health care services, Fin was a founding organizer of the Catherine White Holman Wellness Centre. Providing trans visibility and ‘first contact’ with isolated trans youth is an experience that continues to resonate with and motivate Fin today.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA SUPERSTAR!  facebook and twitter for the average health organizer

Saturday, Oct 28, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, Room 102

Description: DMs, ROI, hashtags, and sharables... confused yet? Over the past decade, social media has become a powerful form of communication. Twitter played an important role in grassroots social movements like #BlackLivesMatter and Occupy Wall Street. On the other hand, platforms like Facebook and Twitter helped billionaire and real estate mogul Donald Trump effectively target voters and win the US presidency. Using social media is tactic. And like any tactic, there are many limitations. But there are also significant opportunities. In this workshop, Nat Lowe, BC Health Coalition organizer (and social media guy), will share how you can use tools like Facebook and Twitter to cut through the noise, grow your organization, and build a powerful health justice movement... and yes, while still knocking on doors!

Nat LoweNat Lowe joined the BC Health Coalition as an Organizer in July 2017. Previously, Nat worked in outreach and communications at the BC Civil Liberties Association and as a community organizer at Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles. Also, Nat organizes with Chinatown Action Group, a collective of Chinese people of all ages in Vancouver Chinatown building power with and engaging poor and working class residents. On his free time, Nat loves playing ultimate frisbee, hiking B.C.’s beautiful mountains, and grilling spicy chicken wings.

Presenting Organizations: 

Orgs