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Oasis Monthly Newsletter - July 2015
 
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 Oasis Bi-Monthly Newsletter. Follow our top stories and stay up to date on current events
in our community! Want more? Visit Oasisonline.ca  


President's Message


One of the most important missions we have, as an organization, is to stand as a unified group to advocate for policies that allow our members to effectively fulfill their missions to provide support to vulnerable people across Ontario. OASIS and our committees work to achieve this goal through sheer determination and perseverance.

For example, we learned this week that the OASIS contribution to committee work under the auspices of the Office of the Ontario Fire Marshall has resulted in additional revenue allocations for most agencies in Ontario to meet the new fire code retrofitting requirements. This was achieved through the hard work of David Ferguson and Marion Graves and helps us continue to meet the needs of vulnerable people.

Also in the last few weeks, Bob Butella, Donna Marcaccio and myself met with Minister of Labour Kevin Flynn as recommended by the Minister Responsible for Women’s Issues Tracey MacCharles to discuss the Proxy Pay Equity dilemma, the details of which are outlined in the ACTION ALERT section below.

The next meeting of the OASIS Board of Directors will take place on September 9-10, 2015 in Hamilton. As always, members are welcome to attend Board meetings. We welcome you to join us or contact me prior to the meeting to share your ideas and concerns. I can be reached by email at president@oasisonline.ca or by phone at 1-800-961-9144.
 
Sincerely,
L. David Barber
President, OASIS

ACTION ALERT


On July 8, OASIS leadership met with Hon. Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour, to discuss Ontario’s pay equity model, which has created hardships for a number of organizations in the developmental services sector.

Since 2010, our member agencies have been working hard on a collaborative solution to address systemic issues in terms of wage predictability and its impact on levels of front line agency service. The developmental sector, as a whole, has been a leader on pay equity, with over 50% of agencies led by female CEOs.

Despite this track record of success, legislated pay equity adjustments, which identified hospitals as comparators for developmental sector agencies, led to large in-sector wage increases for which many agencies were unprepared.

During the meeting with Minister Flynn, OASIS asked the government to allow for in-sector comparators, placing a moratorium on Proxy Pay Equity liabilities until changes are put in place, and commit to funding pay equity adjustments to completion at that time. Doing so would prevent the loss of 3,600 full-time positions and mitigate service impacts for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

As making these changes will not result in additional costs for the ministry, we are confident that we will make progress. We will follow up with Minister Flynn prior to our August OASIS Executive meeting and 
look forward to continuing this discussion.

Developmental Services Human Resources Strategy 

In 2008 the Provincial Network on Developmental Services and the Ministry of Community and Social Services partnered together to launch the Developmental Services (DS) Human Resource (HR) Strategy. The vision of the Strategy was to further professionalize the developmental services sector and ensure the best quality of supports for people with developmental disabilities in Ontario.

After extensive research and consultation with the sector, completed with the consulting firm HayGroup®, the Developmental Services Human Resources Strategy launched the Core Competencies, which has laid the foundation for much of the work of the DS HR Strategy. This work indicates the Threshold and Core Competencies required for 7 key positions in Ontario’s Developmental Services Sector (direct support professionals, direct support supervisors, specialized social workers, clinical specialists, managers, directors and executive directors). Not only have the Core Competencies been implemented in many DS agencies across the province, colleges have begun to embed them into their DSW programs.

For more information on the DS HR Strategy or more information on the tools and resources available, please visit www.ontariodevelopmentalservices.ca, or contact Project Coordinator Debbie Bray at: dbray@cl-grimsbylincoln.ca.

OASIS Updates

Award Recipients Recognized at OASIS Conference 


Krista Haiduk-Collier recieves the President's Scholarship from Peter Sproul

Each year, at the OASIS conference, three deserving leaders from the OASIS community receive scholarships to help support their ongoing work, and the efforts of their organizations. For 2015, we are pleased to announce the following winners, who were recognized at our annual conference and by Hon. Helena Jaczek, Minister of Community and Social Services. For more information on the scholarships and the deserving recipients, please click the links below.

Community News

South-East Grey Support Services Finds Success Though Monitoring Model

South-East Grey Support Services (SEGSS) is a small rural organization that supports adults with a developmental disability and dual diagnosis by providing individualized planning. The organization is focused on helping individuals gain control over their lives by making more decisions about where they would live, who they live with, who supports them and how they are involved in their communities.

In the early 1990’s, SEGSS developed a ‘monitoring model’ as one of several support options provided to clients. The model has proven to be very successful, leading to its implementation in support of 15 clients at 13 separate locations.

In this model, neighbours commit to being available overnight so that they are able to respond to emergencies if they come up. The monitors do not provide direct support, but rather be a first point of contact if an issue were to arise. These volunteers build relationships based on mutual respect rather than as paid staff and their support often extends to the family, friends and community contacts of the supported individual.

For more information on SEGSS monitoring model please contact: Marsha Ferguson, SEGSS Executive Assistant or Diccon Garrett, SEGSS Senior Team Coordinator at segss@bmts.com or 519-924-3339.


Corbrook’s Innovative Approach to Service Delivery and Revenue Generation

Corbrook, a community-based service organization with locations in Toronto and Scarborough, offers services that help people learn new skills, gain self-confidence, and secure employment in their community. To achieve this, Corbrook works closely with employer partners like Centennial College. This partnership offers a 1-year certificate program in Food Processing and Packaging to help address the lack of college programs targeted to individuals with developmental disabilities.

Corbrook and Centennial College jointly deliver the two-semester FPPC program, with Corbrook handling responsibility for admissions and in-class staff support while Centennial College delivers courses which include food theory, communications, computer literacy, life skills 
and employment preparedness. The program is supported in part through the sale of spices produced and packaged by students as part of their learning experience and sold at Winners, Home Sense and Marshalls stores nationwide.

In addition, Corbrook and Centennial College recently launched a new certificate program in Banquet Services.  The first of its kind, this Banquet Services Certificate program will prepare students for careers within the banquet services and hospitality industry.  To learn more about Corbrook, please visit their website.

Family Spotlight


What Will Happen When My Child With Special Needs Isn’t Seen as Cute?

Laurie Arnold, a blogger who documents her experiences caring for her special needs daughter Julia, explored her concerns that other people would begin to treat Julia differently as she grows up and ceases to be seen as “cute.” In her post, she examines her fears, her own previous experience with cuteness as a driver for compassion and appeals to readers to examine their own motivations to ensure that compassion drives their actions. Read the full post here.

Fundraising, Parent Groups and Raising a Child With Cerebral Palsy

Brenda Agnew, a director at Three To Be and, guest-hosted the Speechless video series interviewing Kristine Pettipas, the mother of a three-year-old with cerebral palsy. Kristine discusses her experience fundraising for Three to Be and their Parent Advocacy Link (PAL). PAL is a program that has supported her family over the years. Watch the full interview to learn more about Kristine’s story and the role she plays in ensuring the future success of a program that has meant a great deal to her family.

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