Conference originally aired: Monday, September 27 – Tuesday, 28, 2021

Scroll or click the buttons below to rewatch events and learn about the conference speakers.

Click here for Day 1

Click here for Day 2

Day 1

Keynote Speaker:
David Eby, Attorney General of BC and Minister Responsible for Housing

Click here for David Eby bio and contact information

David Eby, MLA for Vancouver-Point Grey, was first elected in 2013 and currently serves as Attorney General of BC and minister responsible for housing. David is also responsible for Gambling policy, Liquor policy and the Insurance Corporation of BC (ICBC) for the province. Previously, as an award-winning human rights lawyer, he was the Executive Director of the BC Civil Liberties Association, an adjunct professor of law at the University of British Columbia, president of the HIV/AIDS Legal Network, and served on the Vancouver Foundation’s Health and Social Development Committee. His years of legal advocacy at Pivot Legal Society to protect the human rights and dignity of homeless and under-housed residents of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside were recognized in 2011 by the UN Association in Canada and the B.C. Human Rights Coalition with their annual award.

Email David  //  Website

Keynote Speaker:
Isobel Mackenzie, BC Seniors Advocate

Click here for Isobel Mackenzie bio and contact information
Isobel Mackenzie has over 20 years’ experience working with seniors in home care, licensed care, community services and volunteer services. Isobel led B.C.’s largest not-for-profit agency, serving over 6,000 seniors annually. In this work, Isobel led the implementation of a new model of dementia care that has become a national best practice, and led the first safety accreditation for homecare workers, among many other accomplishments. Widely recognized for her work, Isobel was named B.C. CEO of the Year for the not-for-profit sector and nominated as a Provincial Health Care Hero.  Prior to her appointment as the Seniors Advocate, Isobel served on a number of national and provincial boards and commissions, including the BC Medical Services Commission, the Canadian Homecare Association, BC Care Providers, BC Care Aide and Community Health Worker Registry, and the Capital Regional District Housing Corporation. Isobel also served on the University of Victoria’s Board of Governors. Isobel received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Victoria and has a Certificate in Health Care Leadership from the University of Toronto.

Workshop: Public Guardian and Trustee | Alison Leaney

Click here for Alison Leaney bio and contact information
Alison Leaney is a Registered Social Worker and the Provincial Coordinator, Vulnerable Adults Community Response in Services to Adults at the Public Guardian and Trustee of BC where she has spent 26 years in implementation of BC’s adult guardianship legislation – including the abuse/neglect provisions. Alison chairs the BC Association of Social Workers Seniors Community of Practice.  She is a former chair of the Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and former Executive Director of the BC Association of Community Response Networks.  Her practice as a front line social worker has been in the medical, corrections, domestic violence, hospice, bereavement support and pastoral care fields.  Alison was recently awarded the Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal for her work to create a coordinated response to adult abuse and neglect in BC and Canada and was a finalist for the Premier’s Legacy Award for the same work in 2010.  She is also a recent past-member of the National Seniors Council.

Workshop: Preventing and Dealing with Elder Abuse | Sherry Baker

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Sherry Baker has served as the Executive Director of the BC Association of Community Response Networks since July 2010. She has chaired numerous non-profit organizations including the BC Centre for Elder Advocacy and Support and was a founding Board member of the Minerva Foundation for BC Women as well as the United Community Services Coop (now Realize Strategies). Now living in Langley, Sherry has completed 2 years as President of the Rotary Club of Langley-Sunrise; previously she was on the Township of Langley’s Seniors’ Advisory Committee and currently chairs Encompass Support Services Society. She is the Vice-Chair of the Older Adult and Caregivers Advisory Committee for Age-Well. She was awarded the Canada 125 Medal and received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012, among other honours.  Sherry holds a Master of Arts in Applied Behavioral Science from City University in Seattle, a Bachelor of Home Economics from the University of British Columbia, and a Diploma in Business Administration from Fraser Valley University.

Introduction: Safe Medication Use/Championing Medical Safety in Manitoba | Connie Newman

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Connie Newman is the Executive Director (lead consultant) for the Manitoba Association of Senior Centres – Age Friendly Manitoba Initiative (MASC – AFI). MASC is a member association currently with 62 member Centres throughout Manitoba.  MASC – AF connects with 92 communities in Manitoba on the Age Friendly pathway.  She is 73 years young, retiring in 2004.  She was a junior high teacher/principal for 34 years in St James Assiniboia School Division. She is a boomer – still independent with many connections in Manitoba, Canada and beyond. Her favorite pastime is her dog – Tobe, a companion, a friend. She believes in active aging and all that it means – keeping one’s mind and body active helps her to assist those around her who may need information and support as we all age together. Giving back and giving to others is important. We can all give in some form – it makes our Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada a much better place.  Philosophical quotes:

It takes an entire community to care for each other.

Knowledge is your power – we continue to learn through our entire life

Email Connie  //  Website

Workshop: Safe Medication Use |  Camille Gagnon and Janet Currie

Click here for Camille Gagnon and Janet Currie bio and contact information

Camille Gagnon is the Assistant Director of the Canadian Deprescribing Network, a group of health care leaders, clinicians, decision-makers, academic researchers and patient advocates working together to mobilize knowledge and promote the deprescribing of medication that may no longer be of benefit or that may be causing harm. As a clinical pharmacist, she has experience in primary care, program management, community pharmacy and teaching to pharmacy students and technicians. Her passion is to advocate for medication safety and she cherishes every opportunity to share her knowledge and passion with others.

Email Camille  //  Website

Janet Currie founded Focus Consultants (Victoria), where she directed over 100 evaluation and planning projects for the federal, BC and other provincial/ territorial governments on subjects including victims of crime and civil justice.  For the past two decades she has focused on the safety, effectiveness, and costs of prescription drugs, with an emphasis on reducing the harms of polypharmacy among seniors. She served as Chair of the Canadian Women’s Health Network and as chair/co-chair of the Public Awareness Committee of the Canadian Deprescribing Network where she co-authored drug information fact sheets for older Canadians and is a founding member of the Independent Voices for Safe and Effective Drugs (IVSED). She was a two-term member of Health Canada’s Expert Advisory Committee for the Vigilance of Drug Products and was invited by the Canadian Senate and Parliament multiple times to testify on drug safety issues. She completed a PhD in May 2021 (UBC) on off-label prescribing and is currently publishing a revised edition of a consumer handbook about psychiatric drugs.

Workshop: Seniors Housing Needs | Andy Yan

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Andy Yan is the director of The City Program at Simon Fraser University and is a registered professional planner. Prior to his SFU appointment, Andy has extensively worked in the non-profit and private urban planning sectors with projects in the metropolitan regions of Vancouver, San Francisco, New York City, Los Angeles and New Orleans. Andy is also an adjunct professor in Urban Studies at Simon Fraser University and in Planning at the University of British Columbia School of Regional and Community Planning. Andy holds a Masters of Urban Planning from the University of California – Los Angeles and a Bachelor of Arts with First Class Honours distinctions in Geography and Political Science from Simon Fraser University.

Email Andy  //  Website

Keynote Speaker:
Mable Elmore, Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors’ Services and Long Term Care

Click here for Mable Elmore bio and contact information
Mable Elmore was first elected MLA for Vancouver-Kensington in 2009 when she made history by becoming the first MLA of Filipino heritage. She previously served as the Parliamentary Secretary for Poverty Reduction. Mable is passionate about building community engagement and connecting people around issues that matter to them. She is dedicated to doing whatever she can to make the lives of people in her community – and across B.C. – better. She has been an active member in the peace movement and has worked tirelessly on a wide range of immigrant, social justice, and workers’ rights issues.  In her previous life, Mable worked as a transit operator for ten years. Over that time, she played an active role within her union – Canadian Auto Workers Local 111 – and led successful campaigns as a transit advocate. Mable attended the University of British Columbia and has resided in Vancouver for the past 20 years.

Workshop: Health Authorities | Jim Sinclair

Click here for Jim Sinclair bio and contact information
Jim Sinclair’s current positions include
Board Chair of the Fraser Health Authority since September 2017,  Director, Canada Post Board and Adjunct Professor of Labour Studies at Simon Fraser University. Jim previously served on the BC Hydro Board and the Vancouver/ Richmond Health Board. He was the president of the BC Federation of Labour from 1999 – 2015 and vice-president of the United Fisherman and Allied Workers’ Union from 1982 to 1999.  He holds an honorary doctor of laws from Kwantlen Polytechnic University.

Workshop: Healthy Aging in Canada | Peggy Edwards

Click here for Peggy Edwards bio and contact information
Peggy Edwards is a consultant and writer on aging and an activist for the rights of older people. In 2017, she received the Sovereign Medal for Volunteers for her work with the Grandmothers Campaign, the Grandmothers Advocacy Network, and the Council on Aging of Ottawa. She is a former policy analyst with Health Canada, the Canadian Public Health Association, and the World Health Organization. Peggy has published several books on healthy aging including one on grandparenting and writes a monthly column in 55-Plus magazine. While working with the World Health Organization, she wrote two critical documents that have been used around the world for developing effective policies and programs with older people. She is a co-editor and chapter author of a newly published research-based book Promoting the Health of Older Adults: The Canadian Experience. Peggy believes in the value of intergenerational solidarity—she now has a total of 17 grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Workshop: Social Isolation of Older Adults Due to the Pandemic | Andrew Wister

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Andrew V. Wister is the director of the Gerontology Research Centre at Simon Fraser University and professor in the Department of Gerontology, where he spearheaded the development of the master’s and PhD programs. He is the past chair of the National Seniors Council of Canada, and is currently a core member of the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging. Dr. Wister’s research addresses population aging and health; resilience and aging; social isolation; environmental adaptation; and patterns of family and social support.

Workshop: “The Best of Care” Document from 2012 | Jay Chalke

Click here for Jay Chalke bio and contact information
Jay Chalke was appointed Ombudsperson in May, 2015 and reappointed to a second six-year term starting July 1, 2021. In his role as the Ombudsperson, Jay has led several wide-reaching systemic investigations, including the 2017 report Misfire: The 2012 Ministry of Health Employment Terminations and Related Matters. Further he established a permanent team dedicated to preventing unfairness in public service delivery. Jay has an extensive background in executive leadership, conducting fair and independent investigations and the use of modern approaches to dispute resolution.  He was the first Public Guardian and Trustee of British Columbia from 2000 to 2011. Earlier in his career, Jay held a variety of public sector positions including Deputy Public Guardian and Trustee of Ontario, Head of the Review of Certain Practices in New Brunswick Correctional Institutions, and Crown Counsel with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General. Jay is a member of the Law Society of British Columbia and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2006.

Day 2

Keynote Speaker:
Shirley Bond, Interim Leader, BC Provincial Opposition

Click here for Shirley Bond bio and contact information
Shirley Bond is currently the BC Liberal Party Interim Leader and Official Opposition critic for Seniors Services and Long-Term Care. She was first elected to the BC provincial legislature in 2001 as the MLA for Prince George-Mount Robson and subsequently Prince George-Valemount. During this time, she served as Minister for numerous departments including Justice, Transportation and Health Services and was the first female to hold the position of Attorney General in British Columbia’s history. Before her election to the Legislative Assembly, she served three terms on the Prince George School Board, the last as chair. She was given the B.C. Interior, North & Yukon Woman of Distinction Award for her work in public education. Shirley and her late husband Bill were married for 41 years. Shirley lives in Prince George and loves spending time with her family, especially her twin adult children, and grandsons.

Keynote Speaker:
Kasari Govender, BC Commisioner of Human Rights

Click here for Kasari Govender bio and contact information
Kasari Govender, B.C.’s Human Rights Commissioner, started her five-year term on Sept. 3, 2019. As an independent officer of the Legislature, the Commissioner is uniquely positioned to ensure human rights in B.C. are protected, respected and advanced on a systemic level throughout our society.
From 2008 until 2019, Govender held leadership positions at West Coast LEAF and was appointed Executive Director in 2011. She has co-authored key reports and articles and speaks widely on crucial social issues such as hate speech, access to justice, gender-based violence and systemic racism. Her earlier work includes a pivotal role in establishing the Rise Women’s Legal Centre, a non-profit legal clinic in British Columbia.  Govender earned her law degree from the University of Victoria and her Master’s degree in International Human Rights Law from the University of Oxford, UK. She has served on the board of directors for the University of Victoria, Pivot Legal Society, the Coalition for Public Legal Services, and the Society for Children and Youth. Govender has taught as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of British Columbia and as an instructor at Simon Fraser University.

National Strategies for Living in the 21st Century:
Seniors and Technology | Andrew Sixsmith

Click here for Andrew Sixsmith bio and contact information
Andrew Sixsmith is a Professor in the Department of Gerontology and the  Director of STAR (Science and Technology for Aging Research) Institute both at Simon Fraser University. He is Associate Director of
AGE-WELL Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE), Canada’s AgeTech network. President of the International Society of Gerontechnology from 2014-16 and was previously Director of the Gerontology Research Centre and Deputy Director of the IRMACS Centre at SFU. His research interests include technology for independent living, theories and methods in aging and understanding the innovation process. His work has involved him in a leadership and advisory role in numerous major international research projects and initiatives with academic, government and industry partners. He received his doctorate from the University of London and was previously a lecturer at the University of Liverpool in the Institute of Human Ageing and Department of Primary Care.

National Strategies for Living in the 21st Century:
Helping Older Adults Stay Connected | Linda Fawcus

Click here for Linda Fawcus bio and contact information

Linda Fawcus is Founder & CEO, Gluu Technology Society, a Canadian non-profit that helps older adults use today’s technology to stay happy, healthy, and connected. Since 2015, Gluu has helped over 50,000 older adults gain the confidence and digital skills needed to participate in the modern world. Ms. Fawcus has been in software and technology development for over 28 years, is a Business Top 40 Under 40, has served on the RBC Young Entrepreneur Board, and is the host of two podcasts.

Email Linda  //  Website

Addressing Long Term and Ageism:
Guidelines for Changing Long Term Care in a Positive Direction | Pat Armstrong

Click here for Pat Armstrong bio and contact information
Pat Armstrong is a distinguished research professor of sociology at York University in Toronto. She held a CHSRF/CIHR Chair in Health Services and Nursing Research, and has published on a wide variety of issues related to long-term care, health care policy, and women’s health. Her recent books include Creative Teamwork: Developing Rapid, Site- Switching EthnographyWash, Wear, and Care: Clothes and Laundry in Long-Term Residential Care; and The Privatization of Care: The Case of Nursing Homes.

 

Addressing Long Term and Ageism:
Ageism | Martine Legacé

Click here for Martine Legacé bio and contact information
Martine Lagacé has been a member of the National Seniors Council since 2018 and has worked for 20 years on age-based prejudices, specifically the ins and outs of ageist stereotypes and discrimination.  Current positions include Associate professor in the Communications Department, University of Ottawa and Researcher affiliated with the School of Psychology at the University of Ottawa. She has explored the psychosocial aspects of early retirement and conducted numerous studies, in Canada and internationally, on the subject of ageism, particularly with older workers, retirees and older patients. She has edited two collective works on the topic of ageism – L’âgisme : comprendre et changer le regard social sur le vieillissement (2010) [Ageism: Understanding and changing the social view of aging], and Représentations et discours sur le vieillissement : La face cachée de l’âgisme? (2015) [Depictions and discourse on aging: The hidden face of ageism?]

Conference Summary with Peggy Edwards

Click here for Peggy Edwards bio and contact information
Peggy Edwards is a consultant and writer on aging and an activist for the rights of older people. In 2017, she received the Sovereign Medal for Volunteers for her work with the Grandmothers Campaign, the Grandmothers Advocacy Network, and the Council on Aging of Ottawa. She is a former policy analyst with Health Canada, the Canadian Public Health Association, and the World Health Organization. Peggy has published several books on healthy aging including one on grandparenting and writes a monthly column in 55-Plus magazine. While working with the World Health Organization, she wrote two critical documents that have been used around the world for developing effective policies and programs with older people. She is a co-editor and chapter author of a newly published research-based book Promoting the Health of Older Adults: The Canadian Experience. Peggy believes in the value of intergenerational solidarity—she now has a total of 17 grandchildren and great grandchildren.