Community Update: WorkBC Employment Services Centres

On April 2nd 2012, the Provincial government will launch a new system of employment programs for British Columbians. Under this model, all employment services will be centralized and consolidated into WorkBC Employment Services Centres, which will be operated by various organizations.

People who want help finding employment through WorkBC will need to contact an Employment Services Centre. The model differs from the previous system in that the Centres will provide help to people from all communities including people with disabilities, immigrants, youth, women and people receiving basic social assistance.

Please note no changes have been made to the rules about seeking employment for Persons with Disabilities (PWD) benefit recipients or for people receiving the Persons with Persistent and Multiple Barriers to Employment benefit (PPMB).

About Accessing the Centres
After April 2nd job seekers should go to the WorkBC website http://www.workbc.ca/ or phone toll-free at 1-877-952-6914 between 12:30 pm – 4:30 pm for answers to job, career or labour market questions.

To locate their local WorkBC Employment Services Centre, job seekers can go to this map: http://www.workbc.ca/workbccentres/interactive_map.htm. Please note that the phone numbers of the Centres are currently not provided on the map and need to be accessed from the various Centre’s websites or through the phone directory.

We’d Like your Feedback on the New Service Model
There is concern in the community that people with disabilities will find the new system less accessible and useful because the Service Centres are not specialized but rather provide assistance to all types of job seekers.

We’d like your feedback on how this new system is working. Please share your experience with the new system by emailing feedback@bccpd.bc.ca.

Northern Vancouver Island Communities Receive Emergency Preparedness Training

On March 13th the BCCPD delivered the one-day workshop, Prepare to Survive – Prepare to Help, in Port McNeill. Twenty people from six communities came out in a snow storm to take the workshop. There were representativs from Emergency Social Services, Fire, Ambulance, mental health groups, independent living, First Nations, as well as individuals with disabilities and seniors.

Workshop participants really liked the CMIST (Communications, Medical, Functional Independence, Supervision, and Transportation needs) approach and personal preparedness exercises and handouts.

For more information on the Prepare to Survive training contact Karen Martin, karen@bccpd.bc.ca

BCCPD advocate passes away

Some very sad news: our good friend and former advocate Ginger Richards sadly passed away this weekend. We will all miss you so much Ginger. You cared deeply for people, you loved Canada and you brought joy and hope to us all. We are all much better people for having had the privilege of knowing you.