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Constituency Liaison Program

  • Do you care about your colleagues and patients, and want the best possible healthcare system?
  • Do you think MLAs need to better understand the importance of the work you do?
  • Do you have 1-2 hours a month to make lasting change?

If you answered yes, then you are a fantastic candidate for the HSA Constituency Liaison Program.

Be part of a program that has been linking  HSA members to their local MLAs for over a decade. HSA provides the theoretical and practical training to give you confidence in these conversations, and the credible, reliable information to help you ensure that all elected representatives in British Columbia understand the issues facing our members, our union, and our communities.

The issues we bring forward through the program are grounded in the experiences of you, HSA members. By joining the CL program, you are part of ensuring that all elected representatives, no matter what political party they represent, are aware of the challenges we face and the solutions we have to offer. There are currently two streams in the CL program – one with a focus on health care issues, and one that focuses on child development centres.

The constructive relationships built through this program have helped shape government policy and support strong public health care and community social services.

If you are interested in joining the program, please contact  Nicole Seguin at Nicole.seguin@hsabc.org  for more information.

Constituency Liaison topics

Each year the Constituency Liaison program renews activities and revise its focus based on current issues or challenges that our members want to address.

The topics this year are:

  • Healthcare: Addressing the critical shortages of Health Science Professionals in BC;  
  • Child Development Services: Services for children and families with special needs, including increased funding for early intervention therapies, stable funding for autism services, increased funding for supported child development services, and early years mental health services; and
  • Healthcare & Child Development Services Expanding mental health presumptive coverage

Addressing shortages of Health Science Professionals in BC

For years, British Columbia’s health care system has struggled with shortages of Health Science Professionals (HSP) in the public sector. Many British Columbians have never heard of these professions, nor could they describe the critical role they play in our public health care system. Despite this lack of public awareness, health care would not function without them.

It is not just doctors and nurses who save lives and care for British Columbians; it takes a whole team of health care professionals

The health care system has managed under these shortages for many years, but the situation has reached a tipping point and needs immediate attention

Read our backgrounder on the impact of shortages in the health science professions. 

Improve access to critical services provided by Child Development Centres 

Child Development Centres (CDCs) provide therapy and services to more than 15,000 children and youth and their families. CDCs serve children with physical, behavioural, neurological and developmental disabilities, including cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, autism, fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, and other mental health and behavioural issues.

Funding challenges and shortages of health care and community social services professionals is taking a toll on these critical services that children and families depend on. In previous years when new child care spaces were created, there has been no increased funding for SCD services provided by CDCs. As a result, children with special needs and their families have not benefitted from these new spaces. The new federal-provincial early learning agreement provides an opportunity to ensure that SCD services are available to all children who need them, and that existing workforce challenges are urgently addressed.

Read our backgrounder on why increased funding for CDC services is so critical.

What is a Child Development Centre

Expanding Mental Health Presumptive Coverage

The Health Sciences Association applauds the government’s decision to grant mental health presumptive coverage to some sectors of workers in BC, including first responders, dispatchers and nurses. What this means is that when these workers receive a diagnosis of PTSD or another mental health diagnosis as a result of a workplace traumatic event it is easier for them to advance a Workers Compensation claim.

This will reduce stress for workers, encourage them to get help when they need it, and remove onerous bureaucratic steps. We know that the faster someone seeks help, the faster the recovery and the faster they are back at work.

However, there are a number of health care and community social services professionals currently not covered by the legislation who face ongoing workplace risks.  They deserve the same access to critical resources and services.

Health care and community social service workers are often on the front line of traumatic events, violent experiences, and high-stress environments. It is their job to care for others in times of crisis, and to put their patients first.

The province is currently facing a severe shortage of health care and community social service professionals. We need to ensure that workers filling these critical roles are protected and supported, and that includes reducing the barriers to mental health supports.

Read our backgrounder on presumptive coverage

Download Constituency Liaison lobby kit materials here:

Lobby Kit