News & Announcements for 2021

Professors Nicole Ives & Wanda Gabriel, 2021 Recipients of McGill's Award for Equity & Community Building

Nicole IvesProfessors Nicole Ives and Wanda Gabriel have been selected as the 2021 recipients of McGill’s Award for Equity and Community Building. Their pioneering work with Indigenous Access McGill, the Field Studies course, Indigenous initiatives at McGill, and most recently the BSW program to be delivered in Nunavik are some of the outstanding contributions that are being recognized by McGill for this award. Through their teaching, scholarship, and service to the university and to the community, Professors Gabriel and Ives have demonstrated a sustained and impactful commitment to equity and decolonization at McGill. Without their gentle but firm guidance our School and the university would be facing an even steeper challenge as we engage in meeting McGill’s strategic priorities with respect expanding diversity and connecting with communities.


M.Sc.(A) CFT Program and the Importance of Marriage and Family Therapists 

A recent CTV News article including input from M.Sc.(A) CFT alumni, Mylene Choquette, has been published discussing the need for TCF's to be integrated into the public network to curb domestic violence.

"The cohorts trained at McGill University, which offers the only master's program in marital and family therapy in Quebec, are only making up for the retirements" 

Read the full article:  https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/


Congratulations to Susan Mintzberg Winner of the Principal's Prize for Public Engagement


The School of Social Work is delighted to congratulate Susan Mintzberg PhD Candidate, who was selected as the Graduate Student winner of the Principal's' Prize for Public Engagement for 2021. Since the onset of the pandemic Susan has been actively speaking out about myriad of social issues closely tied to her own doctoral work such as our continued failure to recognize families as experts in the health of their relatives, and the problematic results of top down decision making . While her engagement has included participation in webinars and public lectures, her outstanding contributions in the production of thought provoking Opinion Editorials and live media interviews on senior care, education, and religious diversity are what stood out to the committee as exceptional.

The awards ceremony took place on April 13, 2021 and can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/c/mcgilluniversity/videos?app=desktop


Dr. Shana Almeida - Decoding Diversity Speak: How Racism Thrives Through Inclusion

Watch the Recorded Talk:

Dr. Shana Almeida - Transforming Social Work Speaker Series - YouTube

This is the second ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­lecture in the McGill School of Social Work's Transforming Social Work Speaker Series.  This series stems from numerous calls to action within our profession and broader society. Recognition of social work’s colonial roots requires reflecting on our past and present to determine how as a profession we can move towards liberatory transformation.

Dr. Shana Almeida, Assistant Professor, Ryerson University

"Decoding Diversity Speak: How Racism Thrives Through Inclusion"

Dr. Shana Almeida is an Assistant Professor in the School of Professional Communication at Ryerson University, specializing in politics and race. Her research and teaching contributions are informed by over six years as political staff in the municipal government of Toronto. During her time at the City of Toronto, Dr. Almeida spearheaded several City-wide policy initiatives in the areas of anti-racism, equity, immigration, employment, recreation, public health, poverty, and housing. Dr. Almeida completed her Ph.D. in Social Work at York University in Toronto (2016). Her doctoral thesis, an exploration of how race is reproduced through “diversity” discourse in the City of Toronto, provides the foundation for her forthcoming book Toronto the Good? Negotiating Race in the Diverse City, with University of Toronto Press. The book uniquely attends to what diversity does, to remake the City of Toronto as a beacon of democracy, racial inclusion, and progress. Initiated in a local context, the book critically contributes to global debates on the roles of racial inclusion, representation and political participation in advancing anti-racism and social justice. Dr. Almeida has been invited to share her work locally and internationally, including in Toronto, Berlin, Frankfurt, London, and Grahamstown, South Africa.

Register in advance:

https://mcgill.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZcrfuuorT8tHdErOcCeYHWnjJJ--Pyk5Cjr

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.  There is no fee required to attend this event, closed captions will be available, and a recording of the event will be shared shortly after the lecture.

Image Description: A head and shoulders photograph of a South Asian woman with long black hair that is swept over her right shoulder. She looks straight into the camera, smiles, and wears a black jacket over a stripped black and white shirt.


Kai Cheng Thom - The Work We Came To Do: Transformative Justice & Reclaiming Professional Ethics

Watch the Recorded Talk:

March 31st – Kai Cheng Thom - The Work We Came To Do: Transformative Justice & Reclaiming Professional Ethics

This is the first ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­lecture in the McGill School of Social Work's Transforming Social Work Speaker Series.  This series stems from numerous calls to action within our profession and broader society. Recognition of social work’s colonial roots requires reflecting on our past and present to determine how as a profession we can move towards liberatory transformation.

Kai Cheng Thom - The Work We Came To Do: Transformative Justice & Reclaiming Professional Ethics

What does it mean to be a "helping professional" in the current age of social revolution and renewed movement for racial justice? How can students, teachers, and practitioners reconcile social work's roots in colonization and collective trauma with our mission to transform society for the better? And what do we do when our own traumas and political disagreements seem to be tearing our communities of practice apart? Join award-winning author, speaker, conflict consultant, and former clinical social worker Kai Cheng Thom for an exploration of Transformative Justice and its implications for work in the helping professions such as social work and psychotherapy. Drawing from her extensive study and practice in the area of trauma-informed community mental health and conflict resolution, Kai Cheng challenges the notion of professional ethics from an anti-oppressive perspective. She outlines the pressing ethical challenges facing helping professionals today and provides an overview of her original Loving Justice conflict resolution framework.

Kai Cheng Thom is a trans woman of color who completed her MSW and MSc (Applied) in Couple and Family Therapy at McGill's School of Social Work. After four years of practice as a public sector mental health clinician working with trans youth and families in downtown Toronto, she shifted into work as a consultant, coach, and mediator supporting helping professionals and organizations navigate pressing questions of conflict and social justice. She is the innovator of the Loving Justice Framework, a trauma-informed model of conflict resolution rooted in Transformative Justice and prison abolition, as well as the author of four award-winning books in multiple genres.

Register in advance:

https://mcgill.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAscumtpjgqHde67G2cAL86jD0FpuKCNFSK

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

There is no fee required to attend this event, closed captions will be available, and a recording of the event will be shared shortly after the lecture.

Image Description: An East Asian transgender woman with long black hair in a black dress stands beside a window.


Laura Pacheco - Field Friday Guest Speaker 

 

Here is the link to the video:

https://1drv.ms/v/s!AhqETGoQqXjTswRVbTOA653J9udX


Susan Mintzberg publishes an opinion piece in the Montreal Gazette 

Susan Mintzberg publishes an opinion piece in the Montreal Gazette about the provincial government's changing decisions about the presence of children in school.

Follow the link below to read the article.

https://montrealgazette.com/opinion/opinion-premier-legault-teachers-are-real-experts-too


PhD Candidate Susan Mintzberg on CBC Radio, The Current

Susan Mintzberg, a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Social Work, was interviewed on CBC radio The Current on April 1st where she discussed the importance of taking mental health into consideration when policy decisions are made about protecting seniors (and others) during the pandemic.

This topic relates to her research which looks at the role of families in mental healthcare.

For details, click https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/1-63-the-current/clip/15834897-vaccinated-long-term-care-residents-face-lockdown-due-outbreaks

 


PhD Candidate Monica Batac Awarded Scarlet Key

Monica Batac is a PhD candidate in the School of Social Work, a dedicated and inspiring leader whose initiative has had a direct and positive impact on undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff at McGill. More specifically, through her lived experience, she has envisioned new ways of building community for and with racialized students at the university. This has included a dynamic vision for creating the types of spaces that nourish and sustain racialized students on campus and across the larger Montreal community. Both collaborative and community-driven, her most important contribution at McGill has been envisioning and coordinating the first North American academic-community gathering of Filipinas, with over 200 participants including Filipina feminists she has long-admired. Alongside a group of eight undergraduate student mentees, Monica has co-created the very spaces where racialized students, faculty, and community members can find community and in turn see themselves reflected back at McGill.

We are thrilled that Monica was selected for this highly prestigious award, a wonderful recognition of her amazing work.

Learn more about the Scarlet Key Society.

 


MSW Graduate Katja Terxeira Receives the Caring Beyond Award

Congratulations to Katja Terxeira, social worker on the surgical unit at the Jewish general Hospital and recent MSW graduate for receiving the Caring Beyond Award. Katja was merited this award through the Jewish General Hospital for the compassionate efforts she made to help a patient nearing end of life plan a wedding at the hospital so he could fulfill his wish of marrying his life long partner before his death.

This is an amazing story that reminds all of us of the compelling and important work social workers do especially as we end social work week.

Read the full article published in the CIUSSS West-Central Montreal Staff Newsletter.
 


Supporting youth protection workers to support families

While many are calling for more flexible prevention focused approaches, youth protection workers in Quebec are grappling with dwindling resources and risk aversive systems that places them, and the children, families and communities they serve in increasingly difficult positions. This pressing need for transformation has recently been tragically underscored by the death by suicide of two youth protection workers. In the letter to the McGill social work community, MSW student Vanessa Finley-Roy asks us to reflect on these tragic deaths and to take action for “change on a wider scale”.

This sentiment echoes two recent Op-Ed articles from Professor Delphine Collin-Vezina: https://www.mcgill.ca/socialwork/channels/news/protecting-child-welfare-workers-compassion-fatigue-328651.


McGill Health & Social Services Virtual Career Fair


Centering Blackness in Social Work: Challenging Silence, Erasure and Stereotypes

Register in advance:

https://mcgill.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIqceCurjMsE9GEqEgxziOgEi4BSgoJ... 


Protecting child welfare workers from compassion fatigue

In the wake of the tragic suicides of two youth protection workers, Professors Collin-Vezina and Steve Geoffrion have published op-ed articles in La Presse and CTV News calling for more supports for child protection workers. Copies of the articles can be found here:

CTV News Article  I  La Presse Article

 


CPA Traumatic Stress Section Award for Excellence for Professor Delphine Collin-Vézina

Delphine Collin-Vézina has been awarded the Canadian Psychological Association Traumatic Stress Section Award for Excellence in Psychology. This award recognizes achievement within the science and practice of the psychology of traumatic stress.

Congratulations Delphine! It is a well-deserved recognition.


Professor Cindy Blackstock in Maclean’s top 50 “power list”

Cindy Blackstock named as one of the top 50 Canadians who are breaking ground, leading the debate, and shaping how we think and live, for her work as a relentless champion for Indigenous children's rights:

Maclean's article featuring Professor Blackstock  


PhD Student Susan Mintzberg on Schools and Curfew

In her on-going series of editorials, Susan Mintzberg has published two op-eds in La Press and on the CTV news website:

Quebec government provides a lose-lose option for parents, teachers and students

L’école au Québec en temps de couvre-feu


Project Connection Donates 15 Tablets to Help Keep Older Adults Connected

~Social Work Students Sierra Aggett & Jason Spiegler:

“We are so incredible happy and proud that we were able to accomplish such a huge personal project by starting Project Connection. We have raised over $2,400, donated 15 tablets, SD cards and gift cards! We were also given a generous donation of handmade holiday cards from Franklin Hill Elementary School. This year, especially a difficult one, seniors from 2 residences, comprised over 400 people, were able to connect with their loved ones! We thank everyone who shared, donated and helped to make our vision become a reality!”


The COVID-19 Pandemic and its Affects: Online Survey

Humanity is experiencing a unique moment in history, with serious effects for individuals, families and societies. The time ahead will be of major importance to understand better what has been happening to us during the unexpected events following the COVID-19 outbreak. Previous studies have shown that pandemics have adverse effects on peoples’ living situation and well-being. Data on these issues are paramount to develop adequate and efficient measures to deal with the reactions of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We are studying persons from different countries independently of whether or not they are infected by COVID-19. Therefore, we solicit your collaboration because it is fundamental to know the effects of the pandemic for our present and future. You must be at least 18 years of age to participate.

This online survey asks questions concerning different aspects of well-being, social interactions including intimate partner physical and psychological aggression, demographics/socioeconomics and the coronavirus.

For further details on this study visit https://www.raadlab.ca/porto.

For further information please contact katherine.maurer [at] mcgill.ca (Professor Kate Maurer).


 

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