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Team News

February 15, 2021 we will celebrate Family Day and the Spectrum Office will be closed

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COVID-19 Updates – January 22, 2021 – BC’s Immunization Plan

Staying Safe and Staying Healthy

The basics of keeping the people we support, our teams and your families Healthy and Safe are important to practice every day:

  • Stay home if you sick – Call 811 for further directions.
  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Keep your distance – at least two metres or six feet from people outside your bubble
  • Wear a mask on transit, in stores, in all indoor public spaces.
  • Keep your social bubble small – But stay connected with friends and family. Phone, video chat, go for a walk outside – it is so important to keep in touch.

I am hearing from many people that these restrictions are causing them anxiety.  We all want to get back to “normal” and visit with friends.

But every social gathering brings a cascade of risks.  If you are meeting with someone outside your bubble, you are now sharing all your contacts with that person and their bubble, and they are sharing the experiences and contacts of everyone in their bubble with you.

A safe social gathering right now is going for a walk outside.   Enjoy the sunshine and the fresh air and get some social connection along with some exercise.  Spring is coming and it will be much easier to spend time outside.  Vaccines are coming and people will have some additional protections.

If you would like to get some mental health support, government has shared these resources:

Mental health and anxiety support: www.bouncebackbc.ca
Or: www.anxietycanada.com
Or: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/about-covid-19/mental-well-being-during-covid-19
Or: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/managing-your-health/mental-health-substance-use/virtual-supports-covid-19

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B.C. takes next steps to protect people with COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan
British Columbians are a step closer to receiving their COVID-19 immunizations, with additional details and timelines released for the largest and most complex immunization plan to ever roll out in B.C.

Premier John Horgan; Adrian Dix, Minister of Health; Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer; and Dr. Penny Ballem, executive lead for B.C.’s immunization efforts; announced details of the next phases in B.C.’s COVID-19 Immunization Plan. The plan will see approximately 7.4 million doses of vaccine administered to every British Columbian who is eligible to receive it between April and the end of September.

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People living in group homes and their staff are included in the Phase 2 group receiving vaccinations in February and March 2021.

Read more in the full press release…

There was also a presentation used in the press conference to provide more details on the immunization plan.  The slide for Phase 2 is below:

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Exactly Where and When these vaccines will be delivered is to be announced in the coming weeks.

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Pandemic Pay Update

I have heard from many more agencies who have received their pandemic pay funding in the last two weeks so we are very hopeful we are next in line.  As soon as we receive the funding, we will process payroll to send your pandemic pay.  As a refresher, Pandemic Pay is a lump sum payment based on $4/hour for hours worked between March 15, 2020 and July 4th, 2020.  For Spectrum employees, it totals about $300,000 and we need to receive this funding before we can pay it out.  The Province has apologized for the delay in rolling out this program:

Delays are largely due to administrative complexities associated with distributing a new program to an estimated 250,000 employees working for hundreds of different employers.

Despite the challenges of the program, it should not have taken this long for employees to receive their pay. The Province apologizes for the significant impact this delay has had for everyone affected.

You can read more about Pandemic Pay here:

Pandemic Pay Update:  Pandemic Pay has been received and deposited into bank accounts on Thursday, January 28th.

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Join CLBC’s Jan. 26 COVID-19 telephone update for service providers and home sharing providers

Dear CLBC service providers and home sharing providers –

Please join our telephone update on Tuesday, January 26 for a chance to receive COVID-19 health and safety information from Dr. Daniele Behn Smith, Deputy Provincial Health Officer. Also on the call will be Ross Chilton, CEO of Community Living BC (CLBC), and Brenda Gillette, CEO of the BC CEO Network.

We have already received many questions about vaccinations. We are in the middle of a very dynamic planning period and health authorities are working hard to organize the most complex vaccination strategy we have ever had to implement in our province. We are conveying questions to the office of the Provincial Health Officer and Dr. Behn Smith will provide an update.

If you are a home sharing coordinating agency, please pass this opportunity on to your home sharing providers.

The call will be moderated by Brenda Gillette, CEO, BC CEO Network. Speakers on this call will include:

  • Dr. Daniele Behn Smith, Deputy Provincial Health Officer
  • Ross Chilton, CEO, Community Living BC

When: Tuesday, January 26
Time: 1:35 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. (Vancouver time) How to call in:

  • Vancouver – 604-681-0260 Elsewhere – 1-877-353-9184 Participant code: 87916#
  • Special instructions: Due to the number of expected participants, please begin to dial in as early as 1:25 p.m

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Charity for Persons with Disabilities | Easter Seals BC & Yukon

Easter Seals is excited to launch a new program to help young adults with diverse abilities become independent, empowered adults.

Compass Program

Learn the skills to live as independent, empowered adults.

This is a 16-week course to help young adults with diverse abilities to become better prepared for school, work, independent living and their transition to adulthood.

The Compass Program is based on curriculum developed by the Adoptive Families Association of BC for youth aging out of government care. Over the course of the program, participants will complete lessons In Education, Employment, Health & Wellness, Housing & Personal Life. All guided by specialized educators and guest speakers, and Easter Seals staff.

Location: Online Zoom Classes

Dates: Begins February 8th for 16 weeks (Monday to Friday 3:30-5:30pm)

Cost: $250 (funding options available)

Ages: 17-25 years old

Register at: https://www.eastersealsbcy.ca/compass/

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Canada Revenue Agency is offering the following webinars in February, March and April:

Benefits & Credits Presentations:

February 23, 2021 – 1:30PM – 3:00PM PST

February 24, 2021 – 10:00AM – 11:30AM PST (in French)

March 25, 2021 – 1:30PM – 3:00PM PST

April 22, 2021 – 1:30PM – 3:00PM PST

You can register for any of the above webinars by going to the below link and clicking on the link associated with the date of your choice.

https://canada.webex.com/canada/onstage/g.php?PRID=4f1473dfdd206ba0967b78ce55fe4326 (English presentations)

https://canada.webex.com/canada/onstage/g.php?PRID=b8cdce9fefce3e4c016e191796bbeee0 (French presentations)

Warm regards,

Allison Reed

Outreach Officer, Assessment, Benefit, and Service Branch

Canada Revenue Agency / Government of Canada

PacificRegionOutreach@cra-arc.gc.ca /Phone: 604-775-5020

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It is a great time to review the contents of emergency medical and earthquake kits in your home. 

Are your water and food rations currently dated? Other items like glow sticks and batteries have expiry dates. It’s a good time to make sure everything is up to date.

Did you use some of the medical supplies during the year?  Now is a great time to order replacement items.  Please note that WCB Level 1 First Aid Kits are required in all of the homes that are staffed.

Have there been changes in the number of people residing in your home?  Do you need more or less supplies?

Have any of the people you live with changed their diets over the past year? Do you need to change the dietary foods in their earthquake kits?

If you need help with restocking your emergency medical and earthquake supplies please feel free to contact Judy Smith at judy@spectrumsociety.org for assistance.

It is a good time to review all safety procedures in the home; making sure that exit routes are clear of debris, including accessing risk factors (for example, moving items on shelves that could fall and moving heavy items to bottom shelves instead of top shelves). Are all staff are familiar with where emergency care items are stored?  Please review the following information from our policy manual with the staff and individuals you support. Include staff to join on skype or zoom if you cannot meet in person so everyone is familiar with this process.

(https://sscl.sharevision.ca/public/PolicyDirectory/General%20Policies/34.0.EmergencyPreparedness.pdf)

When you have completed your Earthquake Drill please record this information on Sharevision.

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How to Register for Emergency First Aid Community Care:

Call St. John Ambulance: (604) 321-7242

If you did not have your first aid certificate upon hire, you are responsible for the initial cost, which is currently $102.00, and Spectrum covers renewal fees.

  • If you are renewing your first aid, ask St. John Ambulance to invoice Spectrum Society
  • Let them know Spectrum Society will be paying for your course fee.

*St. John Ambulance may request authorization from Spectrum. Email hr@spectrumsociety.org with the date/location you want to complete the course and we will call the