Message from the President
Elizabeth Brandeis, RM, AOM President
Welcome to the AOM's Annual Report, covering the highlights of the AOM's achievements in 2016.
When I took the torch from outgoing president Lisa M. Weston at our 2016 Annual General Meeting, I knew that the year was unfolding as a pivotal one for midwives. In June, two and a half years after initially filing our pay equity application, hearings into our case began at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (HRTO). This historic legal action, which midwives have backed both literally and figuratively every step of the way, has unfolded brilliantly under the exceptional stewardship of our lawyer, Mary Cornish. The case is slated to wrap up in just a few short weeks—testament to the persistence and deep commitment of midwives.
Another aspect that made 2016 so pivotal—and so memorable—was the almost entirely concurrent negotiations process that we engaged in with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC). Out of HRTO settlement discussions in early 2016, we secured the use of an external facilitator to strengthen this current process. Negotiations began last June and, as members know, concluded in 2017 with a robust, three-year contract.
Finally, 2016 was also the year that the AOM Board began to engage in a strategic planning process that would support both the needs of midwives and growth of the profession through to the end of 2019. We know the profession itself is at a critical point in terms of the care we provide and who we are as midwives, and I’m pleased we produced a strategic plan to leverage this beautifully.
Stemming from these three developments, I see a future for midwives that we can all be proud of. Thank you to my fellow board members and the midwives who have brought us to this point. It is an honour and a privilege to serve as your president.
Elizabeth Brandeis, RM
President, Association of Ontario Midwives
Message from the Executive Director
Kelly Stadelbauer, Executive Director
In some respects, 2016 was the year that many people were happy to leave behind. But in our corner of the world, 2016 resulted in a number of important achievements—for the AOM, for midwives and for human rights.
As you’ll see as you scroll through this Annual Report, 2016 was a year when AOM made advancements in many areas that benefited midwifery care and options in Ontario. It was about supporting excellent clinical care, for example, in the form of our largest number of educational offerings ever, and materials like the Choice of Birthplace Guideline, developed by our Expert Advisory Panel. It was about working with government to secure funding for Aboriginal midwives working under the exemption to the Midwifery Act who’ve never had their work provincially funded. It was about supporting safety and quality, which included developing a raft of resources on infection prevention and control (IPAC). And of course, we continued to press for midwives’ human rights at the HRTO and for a solid funding agreement in our negotiations process with the MOHLTC.
2016 was also about the AOM providing innovative, mobile-first member services. This year, you’re receiving this Annual Report in advance of an online-only Annual General Meeting as a way of encouraging midwives to attend the International Confederation of Midwives conference in Toronto in June 2017. We’re doubling down on our online efforts by releasing our 2016 Annual Report to you in a digital format, itself a reflection of the work the AOM has been focused on to better serve you, our members. Making our materials more mobile friendly is one more new initiative in 2016 (along with a new website—coming soon this summer!).
The successes of 2016 wouldn't be possible without your highly committed Board of Directors, an extensive network of AOM committee members, and the highly talented and passionate staff at the AOM. Every day I feel privileged and honoured to work with such incredible people. Together, we are moving mountains.
Let us know what you think! As always, I welcome your feedback.
Kelly Stadelbauer, RN, BScN, MBA
Executive Director, Association of Ontario Midwives