Health and Community: What could community-based health care look like if people counted?
Our University of the Streets Café public conversations are much like any you’d have with friends or family around a dinner table, except with more people, more points of view, and slightly more structure. Conversations are hosted by a volunteer moderator who is there to welcome everyone and keep things on track. To get things started, there’s a guest, or sometimes two, who get the ball rolling by sharing their ideas, experiences and questions. After that, it's all up to the participants.
In between institutional commitments and expressed patient health needs, there is a layer of support services delivery that is monitored for its efficiency. And though these services frequently fall under our much-ballyhooed public health care commitment, many of us are still unable to get needed access to health care services. In the context of large-scale impact approach to community care, the nuances and complexities of individual needs can remain unaddressed. This public conversation looks at the ways in which we could overcome the systematized shortcomings of our community care systems. Have we lost something important and relational in the creation of coordinated pan-national networks? When status and fixedness act as gateway to access, how do we look out for our undocumented or transient community members? How are institutional responsibilities passed down to small and underfunded non-profits?
Bilkis Vissandjée is a Professor at the School of Nursing, University of Montreal. She is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and a researcher at the Institute of Public Health Research at the Université de Montréal. Her contributions to the scientific community along with national and internationally-based partners highlight the importance of accounting for sex, gender, migration and ethnicity for providing quality and equity sensitive care within a diversified socio-cultural context. She was a Board member of the Institute of Gender and Health, Canadian Institute of Health Research and Advisory body at the Ministry of Health in Quebec for access to health services.
Geneviève Rail, Ph.D., est professeure titulaire en Études culturelles féministes de la santé à l’Institut Simone-De Beauvoir de l’Université Concordia. Elle est connue pour ses recherches sur les expériences des femmes en lien avec les institutions centrées sur le corps. Auteure d’une centaine d’articles et de chapitres de livre, elle complète présentement des études sur l’obésité, la vaccination contre les VPH, ainsi que les soins de santé pour les personnes lesbiennes, bisexuelles, queer ou trans vivant avec un cancer.
Adina Ungureanu is a sociologist by training and holds a diploma in social work. She has worked in community organizing for nearly twenty years, including, for the past fifteen years with the Alliance des communautés culturelles pour l’égalité dans la santé et les services sociaux. She is responsible for various programs that promote health care access for newcomers.
Myriam Zaidi has been involved in social justice work in Montreal for over 10 years. She considers herself to be an organizer more than anything else-from social movements to the workplace, she is always looking for ways to make spaces (big or small) more liberating. She is also a researcher in the field of social movement learning, intersectional feminist pedagogies, and popular education. She currently works as a human rights educator.
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