September has arrived with the usual flourish.
Or perhaps tornado. I hope you all had some rest this summer.
I want to update you all on a few important developments:
- Community Inclusion Advocate – the position has been posted and we are recruiting for a 4 day/week position . I have attached the Job Description for you. This position is will work from our New Westminster Office but will also lay ground work throughout the province to build capacity for family groups to engage in grassroots action.
- Advocacy – we are continuing to connect with families in dire crisis and while Inclusion BC has been successful in bringing additional resources to some families many more remain vulnerable and are struggling. The good news is that regional family groups are mobilizing and we are connecting with them through our advocacy and regional meetings. They are also being invited to attend out October 1 Membership Meeting.
- Select Standing Committee on Finance – Inclusion BC will present September 21 in Richmond, followed by a written brief that we will distribute to you. Our priorities for the committee will focus on PWD Rates, waitlists for and access to early childhood development programs, transitioning youth and funding for CLBC.
- Raise the Rates – we continue to work with our partners in advance of our meeting with the Minister in October.
- Guaranteed Annualized Income – out of the work on PWD and Raise the Rates, we are working with our partners in capitalizing on a national conversation that is gaining momentum and a pilot that is being launched in Ontario on GAI. This work is a major policy shift away from welfare based income programs like PWD. The Caledon Institute joined us today in our conference call as we gather research and information. My thanks to our partners, Al Etmanski, Jane Dyson from the Disability Alliance BC, Neil Belanger from the BC Aboriginal Network on Disability, Dr. Michael Prince and Yuji Kajiwara, a self-advocate for guiding the process and advancing the agendas on GAI as well as Raise the Rates.
- Membership Meeting October 1 – I want to encourage you and your Board President and other members to attend and to forward the invitation to families and self-advocates. This meeting is critical in ensuring that Inclusion BC advances priorities during the pre-election period that have the greatest impact and that will drive our work afterwards. We’ve already hosted several meeting and have received important feedback and guidance member agencies, families and self-advocates. October 1 will bring that information forward so we can operationalize it together.
- Inclusion BC Conference – Ignite Prince George – the numbers are in – 500 registrants, 7 keynotes, more than 50 different sessions, workshops and transformational talks and $37,000 in scholarships awarded to help people attend. And we surpassed our revenue targets making $67,000 net revenue. My deep thanks to AiMHi for their generosity, hard work and welcome as well as that of the Prince George Self Advocacy Caucus.
Hope to see you soon.