2021 in Advocacy
- CPA’s Response to the Speech from the Throne
On Tuesday, November 23, 2021, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary May Simon opened the 44th session of Parliament by reading the Speech from the Throne titled, “Building a Resilient Economy: A Cleaner & Healthier Future for Our Kids.”
The Speech from the Throne details the Government’s priorities, key areas of interest, planned initiatives and what it intends to accomplish as a minority Parliament.
To review the key areas of interest for physiotherapists and read CPA’s full statement, click here.
- CPA Virtual Summit 2021
The CPA Advocacy team presented on a number of relevant topics at CPA Virtual Summit 2021 November 5-6.
From the first PCE exam cancellation in March 2020 to the latest cancellation, the Canadian Physiotherapy Association and its Branches have been calling for a rapid, alternate approach to licensing for affected candidates. We have been advocating for and offering to help find alternate, expedited paths to full registration.
A solution is out there. Regulators in BC, Alberta, New Brunswick and Quebec have implemented interim solutions that have allowed some candidates to be fully registered. Nova Scotia is developing an interim registration process. There have been other proposals as well including one for an alternate, two-pronged approach to assessing candidates’ competency. CPA supports these and other options that will get candidates licensed as quickly as possible.
More than 2000 candidates are waiting anxiously, once again, to learn how they going to be licensed. Responsibility for a solution and the power to enact it rests solely with the 11 regulators. CPA is here to help in every way possible. Learn more about our recent advocacy activities here.
- Call for Expressions of Interest: CPA Advisory Group on Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access/Anti-Racism (IDEA)
The Canadian Physiotherapy Association (CPA) is committed to developing a meaningful action plan that supports sustainable change, policies, resources, and wise practices to support inclusion, diversity, equity, and anti-racism (IDEA) in the work we do as the national Association for the physiotherapy profession.
The CPA is inviting you to join us at the CPA Advisory Group on Inclusion, Diversity, Equality, and Access/Anti-Racism (“CPA Advisory Group”).
The CPA Advisory Group offers a platform to interested people with diverse lived experiences, perspectives, and knowledge of physiotherapy and/or health care to collaborate and provide their advice on actions, processes, and wise practices of the CPA.
How will we achieve this?
- We need you, your voice, and your IDEAs. Submit your expression of interest by Sunday, August 22, 2021.
- The CPA has engaged the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI) to support you as part of the Advisory Group and navigate this work.
What will be asked of you?
- Actively participate in meetings to be held across 2021-2022, with the possibility for extension into early 2023.
- Virtual meetings, held quarterly, with polls distributed in advance to account for time zone differences.
- Meetings will be 60-90 mins in duration.
Expression of Interest:
- Submit a one (1) page document electronically, describing your expression of interest:
- Why do you believe this work is important for the physiotherapy and health care provider community?
- What are the contributions you wish to make to this group?
Please include in the expression of interests:
- First name, Last name, email contact
- Communities you have worked with, worked for, or represent and how you have contributed to the community(ies) that you have worked with.
- Were there specific ideas or initiatives of yours that have been implemented? If so, what were they and what was the result?
Please submit no later than Sunday, August 22, 2021. We would like to attract the widest range of candidates possible for the CPA Advisory Group, as we believe that all voices in our profession should be heard. Please advise us if you require accommodation in order to fully participate in this opportunity. Thank you.
Please contact email@example.com with your expression of interest or if you have any questions about this opportunity. Please advise if you require this communication in a different format.
- As a component of our efforts to gather information and understand the needs of the profession, the CPA has collaborated with researchers from McMaster University, Western University, the Centre for Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation at CMCC and Ontario Tech University. Through a survey instrument, we are working to gather valuable insights that will help guide work through our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategy, which will ultimately ensure as many communities as possible can access physiotherapy, including those that are underserved. Your voice matters. At present, no Canadian data exists on this topic for our profession. We need to hear from our members so that we can understand the barriers to care that patients face and improve access to physiotherapy for all Canadians.
- From helping Canadians recover from illness to helping improve the flexibility, strength, and balance older adults need to remain independent and mobile, physiotherapy plays a key role in health aging. The pandemic has made the benefits of physiotherapy even more obvious – not just for older adults. Physiotherapy can help Canadians maintain and improve their physical wellbeing and manage and prevent injury and illness in all of us as we age. See how physiotherapy can help prevent, manage, and delay falls, pain, chronic disease, frailty, and joint replacements during National Physiotherapy Month.
- During this year’s virtual Congress, the CPA was honoured with a welcome message from the Federal Minister of Health, The Honourable Patty Hajdu. Minister Hajdu’s message congratulated and welcomed “all the physiotherapists, physiotherapist assistants, physiotherapy technologists, and physiotherapy students from across Canada” who participated in Congress. Minister Hajdu acknowledged in her remarks that “COVID-19 has shaken up the health care system and has had a significant impact on the physiotherapy profession. Like so many health care workers, you have had to adapt to a new reality. You’ve adopted new practices and procedures to keep everyone safe. You’ve assumed new costs to purchase sanitizers, disinfectants, and PPE. You may also have lost income or been forced to close your business during a lockdown. Despite these challenges, you have put the health of our communities first. Thank you for that and for your ongoing efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in Canada.” We sincerely thank the Minister for sharing this message with the CPA during our National Physiotherapy Month and our annual Congress event.
- The federal budget was released on April 19, 2021 and it included investments and commitments that the CPA has been advocating for.
- Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Anti-Racism
2021: Setting a Course for Change
The CPA is committed to developing an action plan that supports sustainable change; policies, resources, and wise practices will be created and identified for the association to support diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism (DEIA) in the work that we do as your national member Association.
How will we achieve this?
- The CPA has engaged the Canadian Center for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI) to navigate this work.
- A CPA advisory group will be struck in the early spring of 2021. The group will be populated with individuals who represent diverse lived experience and/or knowledge of physiotherapy and health care, and will inform and advise on the actions and products of the CPA.
The project will support the creation and diffusion of resources to enhance the CPA membership’s ability to respond to DEIA imperatives in physiotherapy organizations and all practice settings. This is the first step of many more to come and we remain invested in listening, learning, and understanding the change that needs to occur within the profession and to best support the diverse Canadian population that the CPA’s members serve.
Background: Recap of 2020 Activities
- In May 2020, the CPA’s Board of Directors committed to taking measurable steps over the next 18 months to respond to the health-related Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC).
- In June 2020, the CPA’s President released a statement committing to work to address racism, equity, and the TRC calls to action across the next 12 months.
- On November 15, the CPA provincial Branches and Division leaders and CPA staff participated in preliminary diversity and inclusion training.
- On November 21, during the CPA’s Virtual Summit, a D/E/I session was held with guests from the BBIPOC student coalition speaking to their experiences.
- In the December 2020 CPA President’s address, it was announced to members that the CPA:
- would be seeking an external director with experience in addressing inequity, racism, diversity, and reconciliation; and
- would strike an Advisory Committee/Working Group to begin the work related to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, anti-racism, and improving equitable access to health care.
- The CPA conducted a survey on physiotherapists and extended health benefits.
- The CPA’s joint advocacy with the Ontario Physiotherapy Association resulted in the cancellation of the proposed removal of physiotherapy coverage for Seniors (65+) on the Manulife FollowMe plan.
- Independently and along with colleagues in the Organizations for Health Action, the CPA has been advocating for the federal government to increase investments in measures that will help meet the health and wellness needs of Canadians within their homes and communities, enabling them to age-in-place and remain healthy and independent for as long as possible. The latest mandate letters released by the Prime Minister to members of his cabinet include direction to both the Minister of Health and Minister of Seniors to “take action to help seniors age in place and stay in their homes longer.” The CPA was pleased to see this updated direction and will continue to work with the federal government to advocate for increased investments in community and home-based care and measures to promote healthy and active aging.
- On November 30, 2020, the federal government released its Fall Economic Statement, which provided an update on the government’s spending on the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as new spending over the next three years. The CPA was pleased to see several of our advocacy priorities reflected in the updated, including the expansion, extension, and replenishment of several federal financial COVID-19 supports.
- The Fall Economic Statement also included the commitment to eliminate the interest on the repayment of the federal portion of Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans for 2021-2022. The CPA has been advocating for the government to both eliminate the interest and temporarily halt repayment of the federal portion of Canada Student Loans during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
- Through the Organizations of Health Action, the CPA continued to advance our recommendations to support physiotherapy students and recent physiotherapy graduates and interns who have had clinical placements delayed due to public health closures, reduced capacities of clinics, delays of surgeries, and delays to challenge their clinical exam. We raised these issues with the office of the Minister of Health and will continue to provide details on these issues as we move forward.