OPDI News & Events

OPDI NewsToGo Issue #479 April 18, 2016

Highlights include: Toronto OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials (TM) Training; Training Expectations Webinar; Andrew Loku Coroner's Inquest; Ontario's Housing Minister; Assisted Dying Legislation; 2 CSI ED Vacancies and other Jobs; News; and More.

Editor’s Note:  Please be aware that many online newspaper sites are now behind pay-walls.  Not all articles with hyperlinks may be accessible due to circumstances beyond our control; we apologize for the inconvenience. To minimize the impact of pay-walls, consider regularly clearing your browser cookies.


1.  Announcement of Toronto OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials ™ Training
Please see the attachment for exciting details about the May 16 - 20 training program taking place in Toronto.  The registration form is enclosed.  For more information, please email opdi@opdi.org.
2.  OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials ™ Training Expectations Webinar

OPDI is offering the Training Expectations webinar for OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials Program at 12:00 pm on April 26th.  This webinar is free for those enrolled in training as well as for potential participants and organizations contemplating sponsoring participants.  Please pre-register by emailing opdi@opdi.org

3.  Ontario Newsroom

Find out about the Local Poverty Reduction Fund, now in its second year.

The June Callwood Awards are Ontario's recognition of volunteerism during National Volunteers Week and are presented by Pat Capponi.

The Ontario Retirement Pension Plan Act has been introduced, making the provincial pension one step closer to reality.

4.  Andrew Loku Coroner's Inquest Called

As a result of pressure from many stakeholders, the Coroner's Office has indeed called for an inquest into the police shooting of Andrew Loku.  We have a couple of news stories, and refer you to the Toronto Star which has been featuring the SIU in the last week:

Andrew Loku Coroner Inquest's Decison Was Influenced by Protests

From Jermaine Carby to Andrew Loku:  A Timeline of Black Lives Matter in Toronto

The Toronto Star has been investigating the SIU, which is the unit entrusted with following up on all incidents where police cause fatalities:

Toronto Star:  Special Investigations Unit
5.  21% of GTA and Hamilton Residents in the Workforce Have a Mental Health Problem

And the tensions caused by job insecurity isn't helping either:

One in 5 Toronto-Area Workers Has a Mental Health Problem, While Job Insecurity Is Making it Worse

6.  Ontario's Housing Minister Has Academic Cred

It may be 41 years ago, but Ted McMeekin did his master's thesis on homelessness.  Now he is at the forefront of the good fight:

Queen's Park:  Tacking the Issue of Homelessness

7.  Proposed Federal Assisted Dying Bill Does not Cover Those with Psychological Issues

You can read more here:

Doctor-Assisted Dying Bill Restricted to Adults Facing "Foreseeable" Death

Liberals Onside with Public Opinion on Doctor-Assisted Dying Option

5 Ways the Assisted Dying Legislation Strays from Parliamentary Recommendations

8.  Attawapiskat Mental Health Crisis:  Dr. Gabor Maté's Viewpoint and Other Stakeholders

There's been a blizzard of press releases accompanying politicians' visits to this First Nations community.  Dr. Maté sets the record straight on a meaningful strategy:

How Do We Treat Trauma Suffered by Native Communities?

Other experts offer their thoughts:

Attawapiskat Needs Long-Term Solutions

9.  Ontario Reverses Budget Move to Cut Seniors' Drug Benefits:  Why?

In this blog entry from TVO's The Agenda, Steve Paikin explains:

Why Did Ontario Reverse Increased Drug Costs for Seniors?

10.  Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Employees Protest Unsafe Working Conditions

Workers held a rally protesting the lack of metal detectors and want safety procedures to be followed:

"Our Lives Matter":  Workers Hold Rally at Waypoint Centre for Mental Health

11.  Globe and Mail Feature Series:  The Fentanyl Crisis

All articles from this special series can be accessed here:

The Globe and Mai Topic:  Fentanyl

12.  Addiction Care Still Lacks Standards

The tension between the abstinence-only model and the evidence-based use of medications for ongoing treatment remains:

Why is There Still No Basic Standard of Medical Care for Addiction?


13.  Groundbreaking Images Show How LSD Lights Up Your Brain

It is interesting that the conclusion of researchers is that LSD may have a therapeuthic effect since it causes the brain to track new patterns of behaviour.  "Pathological" mental disorders, on the other hand means repeating pathological behaviour:

Groundbreaking Images Show How LSD Literally Lights Up Your Brain

14.  EENet Research Roundup:  Statistical Profile of People with MH & A Disabilities in Ontario (2015)

How do people with these issues fare with respect to education, income, employment and housing relative to other populations?

By the Numbers

15.  An Evenhanded Look at Why Youth and Cannabis Raise Concerns

The presence of high levels of THC in marijuana and its contributory effect in psychosis among young people is discussed:

Cannabis:  Scientists Call for Action Amidst Mental Health Concerns

16.  The Big Reveal:  How a Psychiatrist Interviews (Videos)

Dr. David Goldboom is seen here in several conversations with a simulation expert sharing how a psychiatrist conducts a session with a patient:

Psychiatric Interviewing Video Series

17.  Overhauling the Role fo GPs in the Healthcare System

While the author is describing the British healthcare system, the reader will observe the same kind of systemic re-engineering would work for the primary care system in Ontario:

We Don't Need More GP's


18.   When to Reveal You Have a Mental Health Issue While Dating

The New York Times asked an ethicist:

Must a Mental Illness Be Revealed on a First Date?

19.  101 Self-Care Ideas

Here's a compilation of ways to help you or someone you know go through a bad time:

101 Self-Care Ideas for When It All Feels Too Much


20.  Job Postings

PSSEO (Peer Support South East Ontario) is looking for a Chief Executive Officer.

The Lambton Mental Wellness Centre (LMWC) formerly known as CSAL is hiring an Executive Director.

Psychiatric Survivors of Ottawa (PSO) is advertising a Peer Support Worker position for its Recovery Connections Program.

LOFT (Newmarket) needs a Peer Support Worker.
21.  PSACC Biannual Conference April 27-29 in Toronto SOLD OUT

Latest information from the webpage here.

22.  MHCC Recovery-Oriented Practice Webinar (repeat)

The next webinar on Thursday, April 21st at 1:00 pm features Fiona Wilson from St. Joseph's Healthcare in Hamilton and Brian McKinnon of Alternatives in Toronto, who will be speaking on recovery as a personal journey and how it is apprroached through a working alliance between service providers and people with lived experience:

Join the Next Recovery Webinar

23.  Ontario Drug Treatment Funding Program (DTFP) Newsletter

You can get the latest information in the current issue.

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NewsToGo is OPDI’s e-mail update providing timely and meaningful information to its stakeholders. The ideas expressed are those of the individual contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of OPDI. We welcome your submissions; please direct them to opdi@opdi.org. Preference will be given to material which directly relates to OPDI member affiliates and issues of concern to consumer/survivors throughout Ontario. We reserve the right to edit the length and style of all materials submitted. The current and back issues of NewsToGo can be found at http://www.opdi.org.