A health professional’s “call” of health policy in the Ontario election

On TVO’s The Agenda, this health care scientist (Dr. Doug Manuel of the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute) works to fairly call the direction of health policy the political parties in Ontario are advocating for. He describes the problems with “lids” on hospital funding, without addressing the systemic – preventive, downstream efforts needed to address patient’s care.

See the Interview here: https://tvo.org/video/programs/the-agenda-with-steve-paikin/examining-health-care-policy


Ontario Nonprofit Network opens up the conversation on actions to engage in the Ontario election

The Ontario Nonprofit Network Election 2018 site provides a rich set of resources on how to enter the fray of an election. to move towards greater recognition of the role of  the nonprofit sector for people living in Ontario.  http://theonn.ca/our-work/election2018/

They state:

Elections provide meaningful opportunities for public benefit nonprofits to engage communities and capture the attention of political parties and candidates.


… It’s time for public benefit nonprofits to get involved!

You can meet with candidates, invite them to meet your board, volunteers and/or staff and learn about your organization, attend all-candidates meetings and ask questions, and share information about voting with your colleagues and the people you serve. Check out our election toolkit for more information, tips and the rules to be aware of – but not afraid of!  …

Nonprofit sector advocacy examples

Some great advocacy examples are emerging as the provincial election approaches:


Below is their Graphic, “when democracy doesn’t work,” it helps to explain why nonprofits need to enter the election arena and bridges well with health practitioners working with clients to strengthen their participation in the community as citizens, aka as a critical component of – the social determinants of health.

Use of self, “sharing personal mental health lived experience by mental health practitioners with service users”

Martin Webber, presents the research of Jonny Lovell, PhD student – International Centre for Mental Health Social Research at the University of York.

… From anecdote to evidence

In 2013, anecdotal evidence indicated that sharing personal mental health lived experience by mental health practitioners with service users was controversial, though some practitioners and service users thought it might have many potential benefits.  In response, the University of York undertook research in Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LYPFT) and NorthWestern Mental Health (Melbourne, Australia) to investigate whether practitioners and service users perceived sharing personal experience of mental illness as helpful or unhelpful.

See the post here:  http://martinwebber.net/archives/2014

View image on Twitter

Social Planning Council of Ottawa 90th Anniversary Celebration

From The Social Planning Council of Ottawa. https://www.spcottawa.on.ca/   “We are beyond proud that we have had the opportunity to serve our great city for nine decades, working along side and with other great organizations, groups and businesses to be able to be a catalyst for economic and social development.”

…Did You Know?…

The first meeting of the Ottawa Council of Social Agencies took place in 1928 at the Chateau Laurier. There were 24 agencies in child and family welfare, health, education, and recreation. The constitution for the Council of Social Agencies was actually approved in 1933. Its principle purposes were to “promote the study of the social needs of the community; establish how agencies could improve their services or respond to unmet needs; and increase the awareness and interest members of the community in the social needs of all community members.” (Moscovitch, 2003)


May 23rd, 2018

5:45 – 8:00 p.m.

Knox Presbyterian Church – 120 Lisgar St, Ottawa

The event will start at 5.45 pm with the business portion (AGM).

The “pay-as-you-can” dinner will commence at 6;30 pm followed by our celebration speeches and cake!

Please RSVP to office@spcottawa.on.ca including any requested accommodations or special diet needs.

We truly hope you are able to make it out this special occasion and celebrate with the SPCO board, volunteers and staff.



Final Report of the Ontario — Mental Health and Addictions Leadership Advisory Council

This report will be a key driver of accountability across systems and organizations  for mental health and addictions reform in Ontario. 

1. Improve mental health and well-being for all Ontarians;
2. Create healthy, resilient, inclusive communities;
3. Identify mental health and addictions problems early and intervene;
4. Provide timely, high quality, integrated, person-directed health and other human services.

Advisory Council Ann Rep 2017 Cover.jpg

…We have explored the availability and quality of mental health and addictions services, and identified critical gaps in services and supports. We have focused on equity as a key pillar and marker of system effectiveness, particularly as it relates to diverse and marginalized populations, but more generally as a way to respond to the impacts of discrimination, stigma and other inequities faced by all Ontarians experiencing mental illness or addictions. We have dealt with the issue of system fragmentation, and the difficulties individuals and families face when trying to understand and access the services and supports they need in their communities. We have developed a strategy to build and fund supportive housing for people living with mental illness and addictions across Ontario, which will help provide a foundation for recovery and wellness and provide access to a fundamental social determinant of health. We have also looked at mental health and addictions services from the perspective of overall quality, and the measurement data needed to assess system performance and set performance targets. …

“60%of the factors
that make us ill,
impact our mental health and
limit recovery can be classed as
social determinants of health.”

See the Final Advisory Council report  here:


See the Provincial Strategy Document here:


Social Workers attempt to strengthen the profession to meet global challenges

From CASW, – The International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW) efforts to create cohesion between education and actual practice. 

Diagramme of IFSW focus areas

…At an interview after the UN Speech Dr Truell said, “It was a historical mistake that social work split education and practice into separate organisations which has been a constant barrier in the profession. The people who use social work services deserve a profession that not only involves them, but also where teaching and practice directly inform one another. We realise of course that the two organisations have different operational cultures which makes joining together challenging, but through a respectful process, I am sure we can find solutions that are the best for the profession and uphold the dignity of the histories of both organisations”. …

See the article herehttp://ifsw.org/news/ifsw-publicly-calls-for-the-joining-of-the-professional-global-social-work-organisations/

Standards for Technology in Social Work Practice

From four United States social work bodies that partnered with  the National Association of Social Workers to develop the standards –  NA S W, A S W B, C S W E , & C S WA.  Note that the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) includes Canadian regulatory bodies.

photo from: “Much research on information and communication technology and society” byRichard Smith is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Technology Standards in Social Work Practice (2017)

… The following standards
are divided into four main sections and address
social workers’ use of electronic technology to
(1) provide information to the public; (2) design
and deliver services; (3) gather, manage, store,
and access information about clients; and (4)
educate and supervise social workers. These
standards are designed to guide social workers’
use of technology; enhance social workers’
awareness of their ethical responsibilities when
using technology; and inform social workers,
employers, and the public about practice standards
pertaining to social workers’ use of technology. …

See the document: at the USA’s, National Association of Social Workers website:


It looks quite extensive, it would be useful to see how other countries are approaching use of Information Communication Technology as the relevance of the www, to a community’s context’s, human interactions, only grows each day.