To celebrate December 10th International Human Rights Day, CMHA Ontario has released a new Equity Action Framework.
LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer) youth, women, older clients with mental health and addictions issues, Indigenous peoples, newcomers to Canada and people living in poverty are some of the groups that have difficulty accessing timely and meaningful mental health and addictions resources.
To better assist organizations, CMHA Ontario has developed a tool called Advancing Equity in Ontario: An Action Framework. This framework identifies how equity principles can be incorporated into three points of care:
- Service Delivery Level
- Organizational Level
- Regional Planning and Provincial Policy Level
The issues surrounding venerable populations are wide-ranging and complex. System level changes are required to ensure that we tackle the social determinants of health that affect marginalized populations. Organizations are often not given a clear plan of action for responding to vulnerable populations. Tactical, albeit critical, challenges remain unanswered.
For example: How do we serve marginalized client populations? How can we incorporate the perspectives of people with lives experiences into our program planning? Resolving these equity challenges related to addictions and mental health remain a critical component to ensure the most vulnerable clients receive timely, equitable care customized to their needs.
It is CMHA Ontario’s aim, through the Advancing Equity in Ontario: An Action Framework to equip health service providers, regional planners, and public policy leaders with tactical solutions that can reduce the burden of systemic discrimination.