As a network of national organizations, the National Partners have been working together to urge the Public Health Agency of Canada to strengthen their upcoming call for the Community Action Fund. This brief update is to share with our members and stakeholders the concerns that we have raised and the responses that we have received to date.
National Strategies: Canada lacks a cohesive and renewed strategy to address HIV and AIDS, as well as HCV. We have had some discussions about what such a strategy or strategies may mean in terms of the roll-out of the Community Action Fund and continue to advocate for strategies to address HIV/AIDS and HCV.
Planning Process: While the timelines for rolling out the Letter of Intent Process are moving along quite well, we are asking for some flexibility between 3 and 5 year funding processes, depending on the need of the proposed project, particularly when it comes to developing a new community alliance.
Letter of Intent Process: We are pleased to learn that the letter of intent process will not require the extensive work in terms of gathering letters of support and partnership.
Priority Populations: Along with many stakeholders consulted, the National Partners took exception to the fact that prisoners and people who use drugs were excluded from the priority populations. PHAC has agreed that these populations should be explicitly named, and have adjusted the priority populations. We are still concerned about the exclusion of Transgender People as a priority and continue to flag this area of concern.
Inclusion of quality of life programming priorities: The current model does not substantively address the need to secure quality of life measures that allow people living with HIV, HCV and other illnesses to live well in the same ways that are prioritized for all people in Canada. Essential direct services to people living with HIV and people living with and affected by HCV must remain a priority in this new funding model.
Number of contribution agreements held by any one agency: The current structure of this funding call requires that any agency can only hold one contribution agreement. This is problematic in the development of community alliances, where one organization may be involved in numerous alliances. We have asked that PHAC remove this limitation, to allow organizations to make their own decisions about resources and capacity to participate in multiple funding arrangements.
The National Partners consist of the following organizations:
- Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network
- Canadian AIDS Society
- Canadian Association of HIV Research
- Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network
- CIHR Canadian HIV Trials Network
- Canadian Public Health Association
- Canadian Working Group on HIV and Rehabilitation
- Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Robin Montgomery at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 613-233-7440 ext. 113.