First Call Monthly Updates

February 2018 Monthly Update


February 2018

Highlights this month include:

  • MCFD reps at upcoming First Call Coalition Meetings to discuss BC Budget
  • Living Wage petition for Capilano University cleaners
  • Update: Review of the Representative for Children and Youth Act
  • New team members join First Call and Living Wage Campaign
  • Don’t miss the award-winning Liyana – Vancouver South African Film Festival
  • First Call out and about
  • First Call correspondence and publications
  • First Call in the news

MCFD REPS TO ATTEND UPCOMING COALITION  MEETINGS TO DISCUSS BC BUDGET

The Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) will be sending representatives to both the March 14 and April 11 First Call coalition meetings to share information and hear from coalition members about the budget announcements for this ministry. In March, Aleksandra Stevanovic, Executive Director, Child Care and Inclusion Policy, will join us to discuss the new child care announcements. In April, Assistant Deputy Minister Carolyn Kamper will join us to review the changes to Agreements with Young Adults. Both meetings are from 9:15-11:30 am in Vancouver. Conference calling available.

Click here to find out more information about the coalition meetings, including past minutes.

LIVING WAGE PETITION FOR CAPILANO UNIVERSITY CLEANERS

The Living Wage for Families Campaign is supporting cleaners at Capilano University with a petition calling on all stakeholders at Capilano U to adopt a Living Wage & Benefits Policy for all direct and contracted workers on campus.

UPDATE: REVIEW OF THE REPRESENTATIVE FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH ACT

The Select Standing Committee on Children and Youth has released its report on the review of the Representative for Children and Youth Act.  Several of First Call’s recommendations are cited in the report, and informed the Committee’s recommendations, while others were not acted upon. We are pleased to see recommendations that would expand the Representative’s mandate to support youth transitioning out of care and requiring the Act to reference the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Read the full report here.

Read First Call’s submission to the review here.

NEW TEAM MEMBERS JOIN FIRST CALL AND LIVING WAGE CAMPAIGN

We are excited to welcome Helesia Luke as the Communications and Development Coordinator at First Call! Helesia has over twenty years of communications and community organizing experience on some of the most pressing public interest issues in Canada, including climate change, poverty, homelessness, child labour and public education. Prior to joining the First Call team, Helesia worked at the Columbia Institute. She has served as a volunteer board member at CCEC Credit Union for over fifteen years. Welcome, Helesia!

Kaleb has joined the Living Wage for Families Campaign as the Campaign Assistant! They are a hiker, biker and coffee drinker who spends a considerable amount of time working with grassroots land defense groups. Kaleb has experience as a paramedic with BC Ambulance, as a Training Assistant at the Vancouver Crisis Centre and currently on-call as a Community Mental Health Worker with the Kettle Society. They also work for themselves as a stone mason  and are completing a bachelor degree in Social Work through the University of Victoria. Kaleb uses they/them pronouns. Warm welcome to Kaleb!

DON’T MISS THE AWARD-WINNING LIYANA – VANCOUVER SOUTH AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL

First Call is partnering with the Vancouver South African Film Festival in presenting the film Liyana on Sunday, March 25, 3:30 p.m. at SFU Woodward’s, 149 W. Hastings Street.

A group of orphans who have faced enormous challenges in their own lives create a fictional character – Liyana – and set her on an heroic quest. She is a resilient girl who must brave violence, hunger and despair, but along the way, brings us comic relief and even glimmers of magic. The result is an absolutely gorgeous film that’s part animated fable, part documentary and 100% heart-warming.

Click here to learn more and purchase tickets.

FIRST CALL OUT AND ABOUT

Earlier this month, Provincial Coordinator Adrienne Montani presented to Brock House members about child poverty and the impacts on learning. Deanna Ogle from the Living Wage for Families Campaign attended Public Sector Leadership: Anchoring Ontario’s Living Wage Movement in Toronto, where she presented on a panel to discuss certifying public sector employers and presented on her campaign work. As Chair of the BC Employment Standards Coalition she also met with MLA Janet Routledge, Minister Katrina Chen, and MLA Anne Kang to discuss the report and recommendations around the enforcement of the Employment Standards Act.

Our Youth Organizer Dylan Cohen has been spreading the word of First Call’s new Youth Advocacy Team in presentations to the UBC tuition waiver students and the Good Heart Good Mind indigenous youth gathering. Dylan was also a guest on Vancouver’s Spice Radio and was a guest on Evidence Network’s podcast hosted by Neeta McMurty. Link to come soon. He’s also continuing work with our As Word Spreads podcast in collaboration with Adoptive Families Association of BC’s Youth Speak Out group.

FIRST CALL CORRESPONDENCE AND PUBLICATIONS

February: First Call submission to BC’s Medical Services Plan Task Force
March: 2016 Reduction in Outdoor Play Space Requirements – Minister of Health Adrian Dix Response

FIRST CALL IN THE NEWS

February: Dylan Cohen: More educational support needed from government for kids leaving foster care
February: Parents hope for relief from ‘child care chaos’ in B.C. budget
February: Multi-million dollar investment to AYA program ‘a step in the right direction’: youth advocate
February: BC eliminating prescription deductibles for people earning under $30,000

FIRST CALL MEETINGS & EVENTS

Next First Call Coalition Meeting
Wednesday, March 14, 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, March 21, 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