First Call Monthly Updates

August Monthly Update


Welcome to our monthly update about First Call’s advocacy work and key developments in child and youth policy in BC.

Highlights this month include:

  • First Call Submission to Federal Budget
  • Tent Cities: Open Letter Calls For Public Health Approach To Reducing Health And Safety Risks
  • Welcome Nadine Gagné-L’Hirondelle
  • Living Wage Research Project welcomes Diandra Oliver
  • September 22nd Public Education Forum

Read on to learn more!

Yours for children and youth,

Adrienne, Helesia, Dylan, Emily and Kaleb

 

FIRST CALL SUBMISSION TO FEDERAL BUDGET

On August 3, First Call participated in the federal government’s Pre-Budget Consultations in Advance of the 2019 Budget with a submission that made recommendations in three key areas:

1. Tax Fairness and Income Support: Leveling the playing field for Canada’s children and youth is one of the best investments government can make to ensure they thrive and become full participants in society and the economy.

2. Targeted Initiatives for Groups Over-Represented in Poverty Data: In many cases, government systems present barriers and exclude families and their children from both contributing to and benefiting from Canada’s economy.

3. Lower Barriers and Improve Lives Through Universal Programs: Reducing poverty is about enough income but it’s also about affordable, low-barrier access to basic services including child care, education, transportation, employment programs and health care.

TENT CITIES: OPEN LETTER CALLS FOR PUBLIC HEALTH APPROACH TO REDUCING HEALTH AND SAFETY RISKS

An open letter released this week signed by First Call and more than 100 members of the public health community called for an authentic public health approach to reduce public health and safety concerns in tent cities.

The letter calls on the provincial government to adopt the following 5 principles:

1.    Build healthy public policy

2.    Create environments which support healthy living

3.    Strengthen community action on health

4.    Help people develop their skills

5.    Reorient health systems

You can access the news release for this letter on Newswire’s website.

WELCOME NADINE GAGNÉ-L’HIRONDELLE

First Call is excited to announce that Nadine Gagné-L’Hirondelle has been hired to work on our Early Years Call to Action Campaign. Nadine is a passionate child advocate, who has spent her entire professional career working within early childhood development and intervention in BC. She is a proud Métis person and the mother of three beautiful children.  Nadine has worked within the field of Aboriginal early childhood development for 22 years in a variety of capacities ranging from front-line, to supervisor and management positions, as well as holding regional and provincial advisor positions. She brings her strong understanding that “ALL children deserve quality early childhood supports and programs regardless of where they reside in the Province.”

Nadine will be reaching out to many coalition partners as she develops key messages around the importance of greater public investments and supports for families raising young children.

LIVING WAGE RESEARCH PROJECT WELCOMES DIANDRA OLIVER

The Living Wage Campaign is excited to welcome Diandra Oliver as part of their three year participatory action research project on the impacts of low wages on individuals and families. Diandra is a Vancouver-based activist rooted in economic development, feminist and DIY communities. Her PhD research at SFU in Geography seeks to understand how unemployment statistics mask young people’s actual employment conditions in British Columbia.

Diandra will be responsible for the literature review of the research project. She joins Kendra Strauss on the project, who is the lead academic researcher.

SEPTEMBER 22nd PUBLIC EDUCATION FORUM

First Call’s Fall Public Education Forum with special guest, Annie Kidder from People for Education in Ontario is coming up on Saturday, September 22nd from 9:00am – 4:00pm. Click here to RSVP for this free event and we’ll update you as the full program is finalized. The event will be held at SFU’s downtown Vancouver campus.

FIRST CALL OUT AND ABOUT

Helesia Luke, Communications and Development Coordinator, continues to bring the child labour perspective to the BC Employment Standards Coalition.

Dylan Cohen, Youth Organizer, worked with the Fostering Change Community Organizer team to put on a community Teach-In, where youth partners from the Lower Mainland gained lobby skills and practiced talking to decision-makers about our ask: comprehensive and universal supports. The team held a Youth Forum in partnership with A Way Home and RCY on youth homelessness, contributing to a provincial plan later this year. Dylan spoke to the Senate Human Rights Committee about the care-to-prison pipeline and outlined how prisoner justice looks at justice for youth from care.

FIRST CALL CORRESPONDENCE AND PUBLICATIONS

August: First Call’s Submission to Federal Budget Consultation Focuses on Reducing Child Poverty
August: Open Letter to the Prime Minister on Right to Housing

FIRST CALL IN THE NEWS

Municipal World: Canadian Public Spending: Going Green and Getting More Social (print only)
NewsWire: Open letter urges Prime Minister to make good on his commitment to the right to housing
Terrace Standard: Rotary launches program to help feed hungry students

FIRST CALL MEETINGS & EVENTS

Next First Call Coalition Meeting

Wednesday, September 12, 2018
9:15-11:30 am
BC Teachers’ Federation
550 West 6th Avenue (at Ash), Vancouver

Meetings are open to the public and phone participation is available. Please RSVP by emailing info@firstcallbc.org

More information, a copy of the agenda and previous meeting minutes can be found here

Next Early Childhood Development Roundtable

Wednesday, September 19, 2018
9:30 am-12:00 pm
United Way of the Lower Mainland
4543 Canada Way, Burnaby

Please RSVP by emailing info@firstcallbc.org

More information and previous meeting minutes can be found here