A Look Back at the Last Few Months, Part 5: A Visit to Chatham and Pain Court, an HC Link Event and the Annual Meeting of the Language Rights Support Program
Following not one, not two or three, but four blog posts in this year-end review series, today I am taking you back to November 7, when I visited Chatham and Pain Court, the home town of “our” Assistant Deputy Minister, Janine Griffore, to attend a meeting of Erie St. Clair’s identified and designated health service providers at the Centre communautaire de Chatham-Kent, La Girouette.
The purpose of this event was to bring together the 28 identified organizations and two designated organizations of the Erie St. Clair Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) and to present the new French-language services toolkit developed by Marthe Dumont and Suzy Doucet-Simard, the French-language services coordinators of the Erie St. Clair LHIN and the South West LHIN, respectively.
I took advantage of this trip to meet with Jacques Kenny, Executive Director of the Erie St. Clair/South West French Language Health Planning Entity; to give a presentation to the local Francophone community; to meet with Joseph Picard, Director of Education of the Conseil scolaire catholique Providence; and to visit the primary care access point of the Pain Court community health centre. Renée Moison is a fully bilingual nurse practitioner who was born in the region. With the support of this nurse, who is not short on vision or commitment, it is a promising, and truly refreshing, access point.
I also met with history and law students at École secondaire de Pain Court, and I had discussions with the region’s school principals. A huge thank-you to Marthe Dumont, French Language Services Coordinator at the Erie St. Clair LHIN, for her outstanding work in arranging this visit.
More recently, on November 13, I attended HC Link’s conference on “Linking for Healthy Communities: Collaborating for Change” in Toronto. I gave a speech entitled Parce que les plus vulnérables ne se plaignent jamais [because the most vulnerable people never complain], whose main messages were linked to the Commissioner’s Office’s disadvantaged groups priority.
The most recent major event that I attended was the annual meeting of the Language Rights Support Program (LRSP), held on November 20 at the University of Ottawa. As a panellist, and together with my colleagues Graham Fraser, Commissioner of Official Languages of Canada, and Katherine d’Entremont, Commissioner of Official Languages for New Brunswick, I presented a draft study on access to justice that explains the importance of the provisions concerning courts in section 19 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the impact that alternative dispute resolution processes have on access to justice. Of course, I talked about Access to Justice in French, the report of the French Language Services Bench and Bar Advisory Committee to the Attorney General of Ontario, and the important actions being taken in response to it.
This concludes my review of the significant events that I attended over the last few months. Once again I extend my thanks to all the organizations that hosted these events for their exceptional work and their commitment to active, integrated delivery of French-language services to Ontario’s Francophone and Francophile communities.