Casting the traditional fiscal year aside, the calendar shows 2019 was an amazing year with you all.
Thank you to everyone who walked through the months, events, and issues with us.
PAN and our members continued to do critical social justice work in every corner of the province throughout 2019. Some social change and equity issues we worked on included decriminalizing people who use drugs, including a special presentation on this issue at the Annual General Meeting. Through the Human Rights Education Project, the team started to roll out into communities to deliver human rights training workshops to help advance social justice for people who use drugs. We continued to work on the decriminalization of people living with HIV, pushing for change within BC’s prosecutorial guidelines and developing a new fact sheet “What Do You Need to Know? 2019 Update on HIV Criminalization in BC” with front line workers, peer navigators and other persons who work directly with PLHIV in mind. We pushed for policing approaches to be based on harm reduction, and supported work advocating for prison needle and syringe programs. We also worked with cross-country partners to bring HIV, hepatitis C and harm reduction into sharper focus during the federal election.
We hosted our annual Educator’s Forum with First Nations Health Authority and other partners (winter); delivered training to member and allied organizations in two health regions (Interior and Fraser in the spring); provided four Positive Leadership Development Institute trainings (throughout the year); and produced twelve webinars.
Our community-based research findings from the BC People People Living with Stigma Index Project and Positive Living, Positive Homes were presented via whiteboard videos (here is the Stigma video and here is the PLPH video), at conferences (CAHR, and the National Congress on Housing and Homelessness), and to health authority staff. We were also pleased to move research to action on a number of fronts- for examples, check out the complex HIV Housing Toolkit or checklist for supporting peer researchers if you haven’t yet had the opportunity to do so.
2020 will no doubt have many challenges – but working together we are stronger and we look forward to continuing to work alongside you on the issues, concerns and questions closest to our hearts.
From the PAN team to you: thanks for all your support, and all the best for the New Year!
Jennifer (Evin) Jones, Executive Director, [email protected]
Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash