COVID-19 has required service providers, governments, non-profits, community groups, and others within the social, health, and justice sectors to be innovative for key services to remain available and public health to be safeguarded.
In the summer of 2020, we hosted a series of web-based roundtables which brought together leaders from the public and non-profit sectors on the nature of challenges related to complex service delivery, the emergence of alternatives, and the future of these systems in BC.
Each session focused on a specific service area, such as complex services aimed at supporting people experiencing homelessness or those assisting people to reintegrate to community from prison.
Correctional Services & Transitions from Custody
Representatives from Correctional Services Canada, BC Corrections, the Canadian Mental Health Association, and JHS Pacific came together with invited guests to discuss how we can assist people to have a safe and supported transition to community from prison and reduce the spread of COVID-19 in populations impacted by the justice system.
Complex Service Delivery to People Experiencing Homelessness
The global pandemic has exacerbated the challenges faced by people experiencing homelessness, and has led many into precarious housing. Leading stakeholders working in homelessness prevention, including BC Housing, the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, as well as municipal and community-based representatives, provided short presentations on the issues faced by these populations, the actions taken to address them, and where we can go from here in our July 2020 roundtable discussion.
Services to People with Mental Health & Substance Use Disorders
The COVID-19 pandemic has had profound impacts on the overdose crisis and on people’s mental health. In this roundtable discussion, individuals working with the Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions, the Canadian Mental Health Association BC, and Vancouver Coastal Health convened with invited guests to discuss services to people with mental health and substance use disorders. Through discussion we sought to address the complexities that exist in the systems designed to support these populations, and how the coordination of service delivery can improve to meet the unique needs of people with mental health and substance user disorders.