Every year ASPECT hosts its Annual General Meeting, either in Richmond or Victoria, but turn-out from our membership has been limited to members from those areas. This time, in our effort to engage with the entire ASPECT membership and to keep costs at bay, we are trying something new: a virtual AGM. The virtual format will allow any member who wants to see what's going on at ASPECT the opportunity to check-in: it will take place on Tuesday, March 17, 2020, at 1:30-2:00 pm.
As always, there is no cost to attend, and the AGM is open to all ASPECT members and their staff. Please RSVP your attendance
. Login information will be sent to you along with voting rights for one person per organization. Other national organizations have adopted this style of governance, which is sparking new community engagement from all areas. I'm excited to try it out.
Virtual Regional Meetings
As you know, we held virtual regional meetings in January and February. Thank you to everyone who participated. At these meetings, we received some excellent feedback with several reoccurring comments listed below in no particular order:
- The contracts being delivered on behalf of the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training have enabled service providers the flexibility they need to serve the clients. Slight tweaks to eligibility have been appreciated. Service providers feel that they are working in collaboration with the ministry to help people.
- Marketing services to clients and employers is a growing financial concern. Some contractors are struggling to adapt to the “WorkBC” brand while undermining existing community connections.
- Programs delivered outside of the WorkBC model are flexible and easier to administer.
- The increased administration requirements are a significant cost to service providers.
- Contract policy interpretation inconsistent from CAPA to CAPA.
- Fears that clients who are not computer literate are falling through newly formed cracks in the system.
- Rural and remote programming is still underfunded.
- Managing employer relationships are a challenge as they adjust to a new work environment.
ASPECT also picked up some great advice on how we can better serve our members:
- Create a reports page on the website of new research and trends. (Done! See “Sector Reports” on the ASPECT website.)
- Provide members with information about attracting and retaining employees and define competitive pay. (ASPECT is a part of the Social Service Labour Market Advisory Committee and the final report will be coming out soon.)
- Provide members with a training portal to access professional development for the sector. (Concept in development; also, professional development opportunities in Aspectives news.)
The next virtual regional meeting will happen in a few months. We are also starting to put together a regional tour to visit members -- more information coming as soon as it’s available.