Update from Community Living BC (CLBC) & Join the Next Call on Mon Jan 24th!

Hello everyone,

We would like to share a message from Community Living BC (CLBC) below –

Dear self-advocates and family members –

I hope you had a restful time over the holidays and are remaining safe in this New Year.

We continue to live in stressful times as we are seeing the rapid spread of new cases of COVID-19 due to Omicron. This is also the time when many people catch the cold and flu. Many of us have family, friends and support staff who have become ill.

CLBC service providers, like schools and businesses, are experiencing staffing challenges as people get sick from Omicron and seasonal flu and colds. Those of you who manage your own supports may also be short some staff due to illness.

Public health experts tell us that we may be approaching the worst part of this wave and we hope it will soon begin to get better. However, the next weeks will be the hardest and we will have to work together to get through this time.

Safety is a top priority – make sure you get your booster

While Omicron is proving to be easier to catch, the evidence tells us that those who are vaccinated will be protected from serious illness and death. That is why it is still so important to get your vaccinations and to get your booster shot as soon as it is your turn.

If you have had your two shots, you are in the health computer system and will get your notification by email or text on your cell phone six months after your second shot. If you have had both your first and second Covid vaccine shot but you do not have email or cell phone, please contact your local health authority to arrange for your booster shot.

Here is general information about getting your booster:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/booster

If you have questions about getting your booster you can also call:
1-833-838-2323

Please make sure you ask a friend, family member or support worker if you are unsure what to do. If you are a family member or friend, please check to see if the person you support needs help to get their booster as soon as they are eligible.

CLBC service providers have made contingency plans

Under the recent Order from the Provincial Health Officer (PHO), everyone who works at CLBC and for a CLBC funded service provider must now be vaccinated. CLBC has also been working with our service providers to ensure they continue to have strong safety plans in place that follow public health guidelines.

CLBC recently held a meeting to share ideas and practices from leaders in our sector for keeping services going. You can read about some of the ideas that were shared in our last message to service providers here.

Service providers are asking their staff, including leaders, to be prepared to jump in to fill work shifts to keep services going should regular staff become temporarily ill.

If an agency has a large number of staff call in sick, they may have to temporarily reduce or suspend some services like employment, skill development and community inclusion in order to maintain critical housing services like group homes.

Service providers will keep you notified of any service changes, and we ask that you do what you can to help them during this time. This may mean being willing to change how you receive services, or sometimes staying home from a service for a few days.  We can only get through this time if we all come together to solve the challenges that arise.

If at any time you experience an urgent unexpected need, please reach out to your agency or CLBC facilitator.

CLBC\’s next COVID-19 telephone support call on Jan. 24

We are all hopeful that by pulling together during these next weeks we will begin to see a decline in cases and continue our path toward a more normal life with regular supports and services.

To help get through this time, you can hear the latest information about Omicron from Deputy Provincial Health Officer Dr. Daniele Behn Smith on our next call.

DATE: Monday, January 24, 2022
TIME: 12 noon – 1 p.m. Pacific Standard Time
DETAILS: Vancouver 604-681-0260 or Elsewhere 1-877-353-9184
PARTICIPANT CODE: 18451#

You can pre-submit questions for this call by sending an email with the subject line: JAN 24 COVID CALL to CLBCInfo@gov.bc.ca .

Thank you for being kind, understanding and supportive during this difficult time. I am so grateful to see everyone reaching out to help each other. I am confident that we will get through this time and be stronger and better, together.

Sincerely,

Ross Chilton
CEO
Community Living BC