In September this year, Robin interviewed Bernice Cyr and Judith Harris, co-operative researchers and community development leaders, from the University of Winnipeg. Their paper “Social Services and the Co-op Option for Indigenous Communities” outlines a strategy for the effective delivery of social services through the use of social and solidarity co-operatives.
From CASC Spring 2016 Newsletter:
Judith Harris has been active in community development in urban and rural Ontario and Manitoba and in international contexts for 30 years. Her on going interest
is in exploring options for an Economy of Safety. She is an instructor within the department of Urban & Inner-City Studies at the University of Victoria.
Bernice Cyr is a dynamic leader with over 20 years of successful experience in senior financial and executive positions in the non-profit, social service, and economic development sectors. She is an instructor and former Executive Director of the Metis Child & Family Services and of the Native Women’s Transition Centre.
In this interview we cover topics including:
- Incarceration and reintegration in Manitoba
- Social Impact Bonds – a new way of funding social co-operatives
- Child and Family Services – The number of children going into care is higher than the birthrate for Aboriginal Children
- Decolonization of Child and Family Services and other social systems; justice system, education system; flattens the hierarchy – the power is in people’s hands. Imagine everyone in these system got a vote! It would be a very different system. It’s re-administrating the system to meet the needs of the members.
- Discussing the alignment of values and principles with the Ojibway medicine wheel values and teachings with the International Co-operative Alliance co-operative values and principles
- Truth and Reconciliation Report recommendations in Winnipeg and Manitoba
- Child welfare system is in crisis in Manitoba; need to have the conversation about addressing these issues.
- Converting to a new model for social services from within an existing bureaucratic system