Ambassadors lay the foundation to advocate to the new government

This Fall, Parkinson Canada launched a Plan for Parkinson’s that includes improved access to care for people with Parkinson’s and care partners and funding for the Canadian Open Parkinson Network (C-OPN). The priorities were launched in time for the start of the federal election campaign in September. With the federal Election Day on October 21st, Parkinson Canada’s more than 200 Ambassadors from across the country had five short weeks to connect with candidates in their local ridings. 

In order to boost interest and raise the profile of the access to care needs of people with Parkinson’s disease, Parkinson Canada also launched an online petition asking the next Prime Minister to reduce wait times for a Parkinson’s diagnosis. The petition was signed by over 2,000 people from across Canada. The petition will be taken to leaders in the newly formed federal Government with a request to take action to work with the provinces to improve access to specialist care.

Over the course of the election, Ambassadors connected with over 100 candidates to raise awareness about the Plan for Parkinson’s. In each interaction with candidates, Ambassadors shared their personal stories about how Parkinson’s has affected them. This has undoubtedly made a mark on the candidates, many of whom now hold office.

This job starts now. We need your help.

At the end of November, Prime Minister Trudeau announced his cabinet ministers. The ministers’ mandate letters were released this month and the Speech from the Throne was also delivered. Each of these pieces provides us with our direction for moving our efforts forward within this government.

Next steps are to provide Ambassadors with updated materials to meet with their newly elected and re-elected MPs. Parkinson Canada is also making plans to deliver the petition on wait times to the Prime Minister to get his attention for a Plan for Parkinson’s!

Throughout the election Ambassadors laid the foundation to advocate to the new government for Parkinson’s. The time to act is now! If you are interested in joining the Parkinson Canada Ambassador Network, please visit www.parkinson.ca/getinvolved/ambassador-network/

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