Client Advocacy Inside & Outside the Office Cristelle Audet, University of Ottawa Linda Wheeldon, Acadia University Andria Hill-Lehr, Nova Scotia Community College Kiraz Johannsen, SyMetric Sciences Inc. May 15, 2013 CCPA Conference (Halifax, NS)
Overview Welcome and introductions Warm up: “Trivial” pursuit? Advocacy self-awareness 6 advocacy competency domains Applying advocacy: Meet “Evangeline”
Purpose: To learn about and apply advocacy skills when addressing systemic oppression that impedes client wellbeing.
“Trivial” Pursuit? Need 6 teams of 5 or so people per table
Each team will get the same questions One question at a time, select an answer, write it down Each team holds up their answer Next question!
TRUE OR FALSE? Close to 50% of adults with low-level literacy live in low-income households.
TRUE Only 8% of those with high-level literacy skills live in low-income households
What portion of Canada’s homeless population consists of youth? A) one fifth B) one third C) half D) three quarters
B) Almost 1/3 of Canada’s “true” homeless population (not just those living in emergency shelters) are youth aged 16 to 24
TRUE OR FALSE? Average tuition for international undergraduate students is twice as high than for Canadian students.
FALSE: Annual tuition for international students is 3.5 times higher, that is $18,641
What percentage of LGBTTSQQ youth are homeless? A) 0 – 10% B) 10 – 25% C) 25 – 40% D) 40 – 55%
C) 25 to 40% of LGBTTSQQ youth are homeless
TRUE OR FALSE? There are emergency shelters in Toronto for the city's LBGTTSQQ youth who find themselves in need.
FALSE: 25 to 40% of homeless youth identify as LGBT, but in Toronto—which promotes itself as Canada's gay capital— there are no emergency shelters or crisis services specifically designed for them
Aboriginal persons make up what percent of Canada’s federal prison inmate population? A) 18% B) 23% C) 32% D) 41% B) While just 4% of the population, Aboriginal persons make up 23% of the federal prison inmate population
TRUE OR FALSE? Canada has an official governmentsupported poverty measure.
FALSE: At present, the government has yet to agree on a definition of poverty. . .
TRUE OR FALSE? ‘Wage Gap’ is related to education: There is less disparity in income between men and women who have less education.
FALSE: Men at lowest literacy and income level are more likely to earn twice what women earn
In 2006, compared to the national average of 6.3%, unemployment was highest for which active group in the labour force? A) lone parents B) persons with disabilities C) recent immigrants D) Aboriginal persons
D) Unemployment was highest among Aboriginal persons at 14.8%
TRUE OR FALSE? Immigrants to Canada work primarily in low-skill, low-paid jobs with little job security because they do not have enough education.
FALSE: 1 in 10 Canadian-born university graduates work in low-skill jobs compared to 1 in 4 recent immigrant university graduates work in low-skill jobs
According to the UN, in terms of child poverty among 35 industrialized nations, Canada ranks: A) 3rd B) 5th C) 19th D) 24th
D) With a child poverty rate of 13%, Canada ranks 24th
TRUE OR FALSE? Heart health is best addressed by focusing on societal factors such as low income, hunger, poor housing/shelter, and lack of social support.
TRUE: Research has increasingly identified societal factors—compared to lifestyle issues of tobacco use, diet, and physical activity—as major causes of heart disease
In 2011, unemployment was highest for which age group active in the labour force? A) 15-24 years B) 25-54 years C) 55-65 years D) 65+ years
A) Unemployment was highest for youth at 14.2%
Advocacy “Act or process of advocating or supporting a cause or proposal, one that pleads the cause of another, and one that supports or promotes the interests of another”.
“The belief that individual and collective actions are necessary to fight injustices that lead toward improving conditions for the benefit of both individuals and groups” (House & Martin, 1998)
Self-awareness Complete the brief questionnaire by circling 1 of 3 choices under each item: Almost Always Sometimes Almost Never Are there patterns in your responses within or across
each of the 6 “squares”? Where do you feel “most active”? “least active”?
6 Advocacy Competency Domains Acting with
Acting on behalf
Client/Student Empowerment “laying groundwork for self-advocacy”
Community Collaboration “developing alliances”
Public Information “awakening the general public”
Client/Student Advocacy “responding to external barriers”
Systems Advocacy “altering the status quo”
Social/Political Advocacy “influencing public policy”
Advocacy with Clients Meet “Evangeline”. . . In small groups, select a facilitator to report main points to larger group debrief Discuss Evangeline’s circumstances: What form of systemic oppression did you observe? Which advocacy competency domain(s) would you call upon?
What kind of advocacy interventions did you come up with?
Wrap Up We hope you walk away with . . . Some new advocacy literacy A sense of community
in social justice action Greater comfort with
speaking about complexity of ‘being the change’
Social Justice Chapter of the CCPA www.counsellorsforsocialjustice.ca
References Chi-Ying Chung, R. & Bemak, F. P. (2012). Advocacy and Social Justice (pp. 169-185). Social Justice Counseling: The next steps beyond multiculturalism. Sage Publications: Thousand Oaks, CA. House, R. & Martin, P. (1998). Advocating for better futures for all students: A new vision for school counselors. Education, 119, 284-291. Ratts, M. J., Toporek, R. L., & Lewis, J. A. (2010). ACA Advocacy Competencies: A Social Justice Framework for Counselors. ACA: Alexendria, VA.