Newsletter of the Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee
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Provincial HSJCC
May 2016 Newsletter 


Letter from the Co-Chair
The Provincial HSJCC comprises a highly motivated and enthusiastic group of people, made even more so by the dynamic and inspirational initiatives of local and regional partners that was showcased at our biennial conference last November.  Their work both informs and shapes the work that the Secretariat undertakes.  In light of this, we asked local and regional committees to complete a “priority-setting” exercise. The Provincial Committee reviewed the submissions in detail. In all, 25 distinct initiatives were identified.  Although it will not be possible to address all of them, the HSJCC Secretariat will focus on those that have the broadest scope. These projects will be central to a three-year work plan, and congruent with the province’s 10-year mental health and addictions strategy.

In keeping with our goal to share information and “best practices”, we have continued to host webinars.  Over the past few months, we have held monthly webinars on a wide range of topics, such as, Compassion Fatigue, the Police Hospital Transition Project, and the Service Resolution Project. We have a high level of interest and participation for all of our Provincial HSJCC webinars. More information and access to the online recording of these webinars can be found under the “Webinar” section of this newsletter.
The Provincial HSJCC website is currently undergoing a significant renovation.  Website developer Ribbet Inc. has been hired to re-design all of the features of our site, so that it will be more attractive, functional and navigable. Ribbet Inc. is working closely with our Communications and Knowledge Exchange committee to ensure that the final product is flexible enough to meet our current and future needs. We are very excited to launch the new and improved Provincial HSJCC website in the upcoming weeks. Stay tuned!

Although only four months have passed since our last provincial conference, a planning committee has already been established for the next one, in November 2017. Past conference co-chairs Alice Bellevance and Gord Boyd have generously offered to reprise their roles.

On a final note, I wish to bid farewell to my Co-chair, Michael Dunn, who has accepted a position as Director of Quality Improvement at the Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario Division.  It has been a privilege to work with Mike. We have greatly benefited from his insight, thoughtful evaluation of issues and commitment to effecting positive change for communities across the province.
Although I am sad to see Mike go, I am very happy to report that Heather Lumley, Chair of the Southwest Regional HSJCC, has agreed to step in as Provincial Co-chair. Heather is the Executive Director of St. Leonard’s Community Services, London and Region.  We are extremely fortunate to have her expertise and energy at the table.


Katie Almond
Co-Chair, Provincial HSJCC
Provincial HSJCC Updates


Through our monthly webinars, the P-HSJCC continues to share information on various topics related to the justice and human services sectors. We had the privilege of hosting many great speakers to present these webinars to the members of the HSJCC Network. The Provincial Communications and Knowledge Exchange Committee guides the development of the topic areas and themes of the webinars.

If you missed our last few webinars or would like to listen to it again, you can find them at the links provided below:
Webinar on Traumatic Brain Injury and the Criminal Justice System:

Webinar on Addressing Compassion Fatigue:
Webinar on Police-Hospital Transition Framework:
Webinar on Recommendations for Meeting the Needs of People with Complex Mental Health Needs:

John Howard Society’s Reintegration Centre:

The New HSJCC Network Website is Coming!

We are happy to inform the HSJCC Network that the new and improved HSJCC Network website is forthcoming over the summer of 2016! The Communications and Knowledge Exchange Committee has been working hard with Ribbet Inc., a creative agency developing the HSJCC Network website, to ensure that the new website will provide the HSJCC Network with a fresh look and functional online space. The Provincial HSJCC was presented with the new site at our last meeting on May 17, and positive feedback was provided to the website developers at that time.

The launch date for the website is anticipated to be over the new few months. We hope that this website will provide an online platform to share and learn about the work of the HSJCC Network. The HSJCC Secretariat and Chair of the Communications and Knowledge Exchange Committee are currently working with Local and Regional HSJCC Chairs and Co-Chairs to help populate the website over the next month. Once the website has been populated with new and relevant information to the HSJCC Network, we will formally launch the website with the HSJCC Network and beyond. We hope that the new site will be a useful resource for HSJCC Network members and a tool for committees to use that can assist with their committee work.

Sneak Peak at the New HSJCC Website:
Update on the Provincial HSJCC Workplan

Over the last two months, the Provincial HSJCC has been busy getting started on the 2016/2017 workplan! Below are some highlights of the work that has been happening through the Provincial HSJCC since the last newsletter in March.
  • The Provincial HSJCC held a full committee meeting on May 17. Meeting highlights included a presentation from Ribbet Inc. on the new HSJCC Network website, a presentation from the John Howard Society of Ontario on their latest report Unlocking Change: Decriminalizing Mental Health Issues in Ontario, and we heard updates from the Regional HSJCCs and organizational partners of the committee. The Provincial HSJCC will meet next on September 20, 2016.
  • The Provincial HSJCC workplan from 2016-2019 has been completed and approved. The Provincial HSJCC will be hosting a webinar in mid-June on the three year workplan of the Provincial HSJCC to inform the HSJCC Network of how their Priority Setting Exercise conversations held over the Fall of 2015 informed the work of the provincial committee. This webinar will also review the workplan highlights of the local and regional HSJCCs for 2016/2017, and provide an overview of the content of the 2015/2016 HSJCC Network Annual Report. Registration information for this webinar will be released soon. The webinar will be recorded for those interested that are not able to attend the live webinar.
  • The Police-Hospital Transition Project has continued to progress with the help of the dedicated Task Force committed to this work. The Task Force has developed a Police-Hospital Transition Framework for Ontario as well as supporting tools for hospitals and police services to use that will help improve police-hospital transitions for individuals that have been apprehended under the Mental Health Act.
  • There have also been many interviews conducted for the Mental Health Court Project by the HSJCC Secretariat with staff working in Mental Health Courts across Ontario. This project has been informed by a working group of HSJCC Network members with the purpose of improving our understanding of how Mental Health Courts are operating across Ontario. The initial findings of the surveys were presented at the Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care conference in Barrie on May 18, 2016.
Employment Opportunity
Project Manager, HSJCC Secretariat
12 Month Contract Position

Supporting the work of the Provincial HSJCC, this position is located in Toronto, Ontario. Reporting to the Director, Public Policy at CMHA Ontario, the Project Manager will work closely with the HSJCC Co-Chairs and Steering Committee to provide overall project management for all projects of the Provincial HSJCC.

For a full description of this opportunity and how to apply, please visit the Careers section at CMHA Ontario's website.  Application deadline is June 12.
HSJCC Network Events 
South East Ontario Regional HSJCC Conference on Youth at Risk
November 16, 2016

Conference Location: 
Ambassador Hotel, Kingston, ON
Sherry Sim at  
McMaster  Muskoka Seminars
July 18 – August 19, 2016

Deerhurst Resort, Huntsville, ON
Lanark Country L.E.A.D. Team Training
October 19 - October 20,  2016

Smiths Falls, ON
Please note that this training is only available to Lanark County L.E.A.D. Team partnerships. If you are interested to learn more about L.E.A.D, please contact Diana McDonnell at

Forensic Psychiatry Institute
August 15 – August 19, 2016
Conference Location:
Deerhurst Resort, Huntsville, ON
More information will be made available through the McMaster website.
Personal Story:
Why Am I Part of the HSJCC Network?
Gord Boyd
Champlain Region HSJCC Co-Chair & 2017 P-HSJCC Conference Co-Chair

I began my career as a child and youth worker in residential treatment homes for the Ottawa- Carleton Children’s Aid Society.  In the early 80’s I had the opportunity to change positions and work for the Ministry MCSS, in the direct service area working with youth offenders at the Bronson Detention Facility. I presently work in the same program area as the Director of Youth Justice Services for the Youth Service Bureau. The Youth Services Bureau is a transfer payment agency which has a long history of working with at risk youth in the Ottawa community.  Over my career I have worked under three very distinct pieces of Youth legislation: The Juvenile delinquency Act, Youth Offenders Act and presently The Youth Criminal Justice Act. It was during the early years of the YCJA that I came across the HSJCC (Human Services Justice Coordination Committee) here in Ottawa.
We had just become involved in the pilot project with the Youth Mental Health Court and were on a learning curve, which brought me to several Local and Regional HSJCC committee meetings. My focus has always been working with youth. The expansion that came with the YCJA, brought with it a mandate to include older youth. Our challenge as an youth justice organization was to connect our clients with the appropriate services to meet their needs.  In order to do that we first had to learn for ourselves what services where available in our community, and how to access them.
The HSJCC, offered us an opportunity at the local, regional, and provincial level to learn more about what services are available to youth and young adults and to be part of discussions that are client centred, and provide the opportunity for collaborating services available within our community. It is fascinating to be meeting with professionals at all ends of the spectrum, i.e. police officers, health care workers, probation offices, addictions counsellors, mental health professionals, housing supports workers, and many others.
It didn’t take long before I wanted to become more involved in the HSJCC, and the valuable work they do. I found myself taking on a co-chairs role at our regional HSJCC within the first year.  I am very impressed with the calibre of professionals who sit at this table from a local level.  As a regional representative I have had the opportunity to sit at the provincial table as well. This has given me a greater understanding of the history of the HSJCC and how it has evolved over the years. We just finished reviewing this year draft work plan and all I can say is WOW! It is very detailed and certainly takes into account the input from across the local and regional committees.
I have always enjoyed being involved with conference planning. Last year’s Provincial HSJCC conference was no exception; I had the opportunity to assist, and I was honoured to be asked to help MC the program. It had 420 attendees, and our members saw it as being a large success. This year I am sitting on the 2017 planning committee, my goal will be to meet the same high standards set by last year’s committee.  Although these conferences are a lot of work, the opportunities they provide for networking, learning, and sharing are second to none.
The HSJCC, is a networking committee whose discussions and varied topic areas reach many of the clients we work with each and everyday, from youth to more senior members of our community. This group certainly has broadened my thinking and my awareness of some of the challenges our clients face and some of the resources available to them.  I am proud to be part of the Champlain HSJCC and would encourage others to get involved. Thank you for giving me this opportunity to share my thoughts.

HSJCC Partner and Stakeholder Updates
Bill C-14: Legislating Medical Assistance in Dying

On April 14, 2016, Bill C-14, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and to make related amendments to other Acts (medical assistance in dying) received first reading in the House of Commons of Canada. The Bill primarily sets out to decriminalize medical assistance in dying by amending portions of the Criminal Code that otherwise prohibit it. It also addresses eligibility and procedural elements of medically assisted dying. The Bill follows the Supreme Court of Canada 2015 decision in Canada v. Carter, which legalized physician-assisted dying in Canada by striking down the Criminal Code provisions associated with the act.
There has been extensive criticism about the drafting of Bill C-14, as many feel that it sets out overly narrow parameters that do not properly reflect the Supreme Court’s parameters in the Carter case. The Bill is expected to go to the Senate Committee next week, which would be just days before the June 6th deadline imposed by the Supreme Court. It is questionable as to whether the Bill can pass into law in such a short time frame, which is yet another criticism levelled against the government in recent months on this important issue.
Coroner’s Inquest into Death of Andrew Loku

On April 13, 2016, the Ontario Coroner’s Office announced that it would launch an inquest into the shooting death of Andrew Loku. Loku was shot by an officer of the Toronto Police Service on July 5, 2015 in a hallway of his apartment building, which resulted in his death.  The Special Investigations Unit cleared the officer of any wrongdoing, which sparked outrage among many people, including mental health advocacy groups.

Steve Lurie, Executive Director of CMHA Toronto, spoke out publically about the matter and raised critical questions into the investigation and why an inquest was necessary. There is a motivation to learn more about police conduct in dealing with people with mental health issues and specifically the use of force as a first line of action. The date of the inquest has yet to be announced.
Mental Health Week

CMHA’s Mental Health Week is an annual national event that takes place during the first week in May to encourage people from all walks of life to learn, talk, reflect and engage with others on all issues relating to mental health. The 65th Annual Mental Health Week started off with a bang on May 2nd, when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a public statement encouraging Canadians to GET LOUD for Mental Health Week.

CMHA’s divisions and branches across the country held their own successful events and activities throughout the week and the new National CEO visited colleagues in Montreal and Quebec City to help them celebrate Mental Health Week. Many landmarks around Ontario was lit up in green to show support for Mental Health Week.

Mental Health Week hashtags trended on Monday and Twitter was fully active with individuals, organizations and schools sharing MHW posts and posting their own GET LOUD messages and pics of themselves, their friends and family members wearing green.
Visit for more information.
Update on CAMH’s Service Collaboratives
With Support from the Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario Division
With Support from EENet
Funded by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care

Copyright © 2016 Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee, All rights reserved.

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