TODAY – Our open board meeting begins at 12:30 (ET)
Canadian Blood Services’ Board of Directors is holding its next open meeting today, Friday June 18, 12:30–4:20 p.m. (ET). Like all our open board meetings, a portion of today’s agenda will be set aside to hear from stakeholders on a range of pre-submitted issues, from access to plasma-derived therapies to systemic racism. There will also be a live Q&A session with our CEO, Dr. Graham Sher and board chair, Mel Cappe.
During today’s meeting, Graham will also speak about Canadian Blood Services’ goal to remove the current waiting period for men who have sex with men who seek to donate blood, and to shift to sexual behaviour-based screening for all donors. To this end, we intend to make a submission to Health Canada, our regulator, by the end of 2021. Read more about the evolution of our eligibility criteria here.
You can access the full agenda for today’s open board meeting here and tune into the livestream at http://obm.blood.ca/en.
Wrapping up a week of inspiring stories of hope and thanks
This National Blood Donor Week (June 13 – 19, 2021), we celebrated blood donors and thanked them for their generosity and commitment to patients by sharing touching personal stories from grateful recipients and passionate donors. Donor care associate Nadine Remington thanked donors for the 100 blood and platelet transfusions that gave her the precious gift of more time with her mom. Cord blood donor Elaine O’Keefe shared how her journey to help patients took an unexpected detour. Edmond Chan became a donor champion and advocate as he cared for his wife, Christina, during her 17-year cancer battle.
While this past week was all about reflection and celebration, as we move into the summer months, we will once again be calling eligible blood donors to action to support lifesaving care for patients. This is because the need for blood products is expected to rise with the easing of COVID-19 restrictions across the country.
Celebrating National Indigenous Peoples Day
This June, we’ve been celebrating National Indigenous History Month by honouring the heritage, contributions and cultures of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Canada. Our celebrations have taken on a sombre tone, however, in the wake of the horrific discovery of the remains of 215 Indigenous children at the former site of a residential school in Kamloops, B.C.
This year, as we prepare to mark National Indigenous Peoples Day on June 21, we are taking time to reflect on the history and lived realities of Indigenous peoples, including the devastating impact of residential schools. To contribute to our learning, we invited three Indigenous women connected to Canada’s Lifeline to share how their backgrounds shape their lives and their work, and why this National Indigenous Peoples Day is especially important to mark. Read more on blood.ca.
Question of the day: When is the next live town hall?
As provincial vaccination programs continue to make progress, we are planning and preparing our facilities for additional employees to start to return safely to our buildings across the country starting in September 2021 (subject to demand). Foundational to our planning for the future of our workplace is continuing to encourage flexible work arrangements for our teams where feasible and supporting staff whose roles require them to work on-site.
Our next town hall on Tuesday, August 10 will focus on the next stage of the pandemic, how our organization will adapt, how we will support employees in this new environment and what you can expect in the coming months.
As always, Graham and an expert panel will be available to answer your questions on this and other topics that are top of mind.
You can participate in the August 10 live town hall by clicking on the meeting link in your Outlook invite. You can also send your written or recorded (video or audio) questions in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “TOWNHALL”.
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