The Therapy Assistant Association of Alberta (ThAAA) is a voluntary association that provides a place for Therapy Assistants in Alberta, as well as other provinces and territories, to come to for learning about professional development and employment opportunities, as well as to become informed on current developments in TA disciplines, both in Alberta and Canada-wide.
For the duration of the COVID-19 epidemic, ThAAA has halted all events, including our annual AGM/ED, and is limiting itself to necessary administrative activities, as well as posting and making available resources and information as they become available.
An Association member has provided the following as a resource provided by AHS for the current epidemic:
Position Statement in light of World Events
It goes without saying that the events of the last few weeks, and likely the weeks ahead of us, have the potential to become pivotal moments in history. It is very likely that the days and the events taking place around us will go down in history as listed among the days that changed the world. In light of this potential for change in the world, the Therapy Assistant Association of Alberta (ThAAA) states and reaffirms both its position and commitment to the equal, unbiased and fair delivery of treatment to ALL clients, as well as to interactions with colleagues and co-workers.
This statement is not made simply for this moment in time, rather it is a statement reflective of the foundational core tenants of the Association and reflected in its Code of Ethics, specifically the third tenant, which reads: “In treating clients, members will not discriminate in the delivery of services on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, or disability.”
On June 5, 2020, Dr. Verna Yiu, President and CEO of Alberta Health Services (AHS), shared a video on the AHS website entitled, “Racism, intolerance and unconscious bias and how we can address it”, as well as the following statement concerning the video:
“For my (Dr. Verna Yiu’s) weekly blog, I gather a panel to discuss racism, intolerance and unconscious bias — not just elsewhere but here in Alberta and within the healthcare system. My guests — Marty Landrie, Executive Director of the Indigenous Health Strategic Clinical Network; Marni Panas, Program Director for AHS Diversity and Inclusion; and Karen Chinaleong-Brooks, Senior Patient Engagement Officer — talk about their personal experiences with discrimination, their thoughts on how to be an ally, and resources available to AHS staff and physicians to help them identify behaviours that are hurtful to others. One of my guests turns the table and asks me a question, too. At 19 minutes, this is a slightly longer installment of my vlog but the conversations we have are well worth your time.”
I encourage all to visit the AHS website and watch Dr. Yiu’s video, and to engage in discussion and reflection on its content. Right now, people the world over are being challenged by current events that compel them (us) to reflect on and recognize the realities of current and past forms of entrenched and institutionalized discrimination, racism and intolerance. This challenge of reflection is also one that is forcing all people, as individuals, to answer for themselves whether or not they stand to condone or condemn all forms and actions of entrenched and institutionalized discrimination, racism and intolerance.
As an associative-body, the Therapy Assistant Association of Alberta (ThAAA) affirms its position as one that stands against any and all forms, words or actions of discrimination, racism or intolerance on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, or disability.
As a final statement, the Association encourages all who visit this and the AHS website to watch Dr. Yiu’s video to engage in open and honest discussion with friends, family and co-workers on its content, as well as on other related content from events surrounding us today. The days and their events surrounding us are not only to challenge us; they also offer us the real opportunity for honest and sincere introspective reflection and compel us to question ourselves about what we stand for, what we see as permissible and allow to slide by, or what we will stand up to and not allow to take place. In essence, the challenge today compels us to ask ourselves who we truly are as individuals and what it is that we believe in.
What is gained from this reflection then has the chance to affect and influence not only how we, as Therapy Assistants working as para-professionals in health care, choose to bring quality, dignity and respect to the health care services we provide our clients, it will also affect and influence how we treat and interact with our colleagues, co-workers, others in the health care community and the world comminity.
Supporting Mental Wellness
Each of us is finding different ways to navigate this new normal and that might be harder for some than others. A change in teenagers’ personalities and behaviours might indicate they are struggling with the stress of COVID-19. In this Mental Wellness Moment, Dr. Nicholas Mitchell provides parents and caregivers advice on how they can help.This clip is one in a series of short Mental Wellness Moment videos where Dr. Mitchell talks about protecting your mental health in a time of pandemic. AHS has more resources to look after your mental health at ahs.ca/covid.
This clip is one in a series of short Mental Wellness Moment videos where Dr. Mitchell talks about protecting your mental health in a time of pandemic. AHS has more resources to look after your mental health at ahs.ca/covid.
Here’s another on : A change in teenagers’ personalities and behaviours might indicate they are struggling with the stress of COVID-19. In this Mental Wellness Moment, Dr. Nicholas Mitchell provides parents and caregivers advice on how they can help. Mental Wellness Moment with Dr. Nicholas Mitchell.
The Association’s Mission and Vision are:
• To support and encourage the professional development of our members through continuing education and information sharing. • To be accountable to our members. • To facilitate maintaining and increasing the current standard of qualifications and education within our profession. • To promote the role of Therapy Assistants by providing the public and professionals with information regarding our profession and membership
• To work towards licensing Therapy Assistants • To work towards regulation of Therapy Assistants • To see accreditation of post secondary Therapy Assistant diploma programs • To secure a solid relationship with the OT, PT, SLP, and Rec Therapy provincial and national professional associations/colleges.
What’s New for Therapy Assistants?
In Alberta, there are 46 First Nations Peoples who live in one or three treaty areas. There are a total of 140 reserves equalling a land-space of around 812, 771 hectares. There are three treaty areas (6,7 & 8) in Alberta with treaty 4 covering a small portion of southeastern Alberta.
The most commonly spoken First Nations languages are Kainai (Blackfoot); Cree; Chipewyan; Dene; Sarcee; and Stoney (Nakoda Sioux).
As an Association located in Alberta, the Therapy Assistant Association of Alberta is conscious of both the history and cultures of the First Nations’ People who called this land “home” long before becoming part of present-day Canada. The Association also recognizes and respects the contributions and sacrifices made by Canada’s First Nations’ People.