Advocacy is a process where a person or group of persons attempts to raise awareness, influence thinking and decision-making related to a specific cause in a planned and deliberate effort.
The primary purpose of MSOT’s advocacy efforts is to promote the perspectives and positions of the occupational therapy profession in Manitoba.
The following resources and information provide updates on some of the advocacy efforts the Manitoba Society of Occupational Therapists is engaging in to support YOU and continue to advance and advocate for Occupational Therapy.
Advocacy Resources & Letters
Enhancing Cultural Humility & Cultural Safety
In 2021, one of the actions the Manitoba Society of Occupational Therapists has taken in response to the Calls to Action from the Truth & Reconciliation Commission involved being a community partner with student Occupational Therapists in their final year of the Master of Occupational Therapy program at the University of Manitoba to create a resource to support Occupational Therapists on their journey of reconciliation.
YOU can take action towards reconciliation: Explore this incredibly comprehensive document that includes self-reflection, information about Indigenous Peoples in Manitoba, concepts & recommendations to support culturally safer practices and resources to explore.
Please explore, use and share the “Enhancing Cultural Humility & Culturally Safer Practices for Indigenous Clients in Occupational Therapy“.
Support for the University of Manitoba Faculty Association
On November 2 2021, the University of Manitoba Faculty Association (UMFA) commenced a strike. Here you will find the letter of support for UMFA that MSOT has sent to the Premier of Manitoba, Minister of Advanced Education and University of Manitoba Administrators. High quality and responsive health-care that will flourish requires retaining exceptional faculty to teach and support the training of exceptional healthcare professionals.
Advocating for Extended Health Benefits
As occupational therapy becomes better known and valued by health care consumers, many Manitobans are disappointed to find that that their extended health insurance plans provide limited coverage for occupational therapy services.
YOU can take action to encourage coverage for OT services: Write to your insurance company, your employer, your HR department or your union (i.e. work who are in charge of arranging and/or negotiating the extended health benefit packages) to ask them to include access to occupational therapists as part of their benefit plan and/or flex plan offerings.
The Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT) developed four letters which are intended as templates and may be changed to for your specific needs and requirements. Use this link to access the letter templates for your use.
MSOT would like to hear about your efforts and successes regarding coverage for occupational therapy services through private health insurance. Please contact us at email@example.com to let us know.
MSOT Advocacy Toolkit
The Advocacy Toolkit was developed to assist you to build relationships and connect with important audiences that can be influential in decision-making about our issues. This toolkit was intended to make the call, letter or visit to your Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) an easy step to take. The contents of the toolkit will be useful to facilitate connecting with any influential decision-maker, such as hospital administrators, program directors, local health advocacy organizations, or your City Councillors, etc. The toolkit is available in the Member Portal for MSOT members (just login for access).
Occupational Therapists in Schools
The Manitoba Society of Occupational Therapists has been actively advocating for Occupational Therapists working in schools.
MSOT submitted a formal brief as part of the Education Review in 2019 which can be found HERE, and presented along with the Manitoba Network of School Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists to the Education Commission in June 2019.
With recent proposed changes to education in Manitoba (Bill 64), MSOT has submitted THIS LETTER to the Education Transformation team as well as all political parties with an invitation for our involvement in consultation.
MSOT Advocacy – Union Bargaining
For the past few years, MSOT has been connecting with health care unions in Manitoba to support the voice of Occupational Therapists. These advocacy efforts are on-going.
For resources related to union bargaining, please click here. If you have additional questions or comments please reach out the the MSOT Office any time.
MSOT representatives actively support a wide variety of advocacy efforts with connections to occupational therapy.
Organizations MSOT connects with include:
- Manitoba Health Professional Associations Coalition (MHPAC)
- Alliance of Canadian Occupational Therapy Professional Associations (ACOTPA)
- Canadian Occupational Therapy Foundation (COTF)
- Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT)
- Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (OT Leadership Group)
- University of Manitoba (School of Medical Rehabilitation)
- Alliance for the Prevention of Chronic Disease
- Barrier-Free Manitoba
- Physical Activity Coalition of Manitoba
- Manitoba Tobacco Reduction Alliance (MANTRA)
- Heart and Stroke Foundation (there are various research funding opportunities currently available from the Heart and Stroke Foundation)
If you have ideas for advocacy that MSOT could be involved with please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org