More on PPAO vs CMHA
Just this morning I was asked by a good friend and fellow emotional health blogger about the problems here, given the fact that CMHA has often shown itself to be flexible and accommodating. Let’s investigate.
I’ll begin with a quote from the from the Assistant Deputy Minister’s announcement, which I cite from David Gibson on the FB group:
“Integrating the PPAO’s rights advice and advocacy services with the CMHA’s own and other related community-based mental health services will result in a more coordinated, patient-centred continuum of care. The transfer would include the funding, governance, operational management and accountability of the PPAO’s current services and functions.”
No. The PPAO must remain as independent and free to speak as the Auditor General or Ombudsman (which are the types of office it in turn should report to).
Independence and specific accountability are its raison d’etre. It cannot be, nor be seen to be, an element of the system it is trying to supervise.
Once under the CMHA, it would be all too easy for CMHA philosophy and corporate culture to deliberately or unintentionally distort PPAO operations, especially with a new layer of budgetary administration as pressure.
We are damned lucky in this Province that psychiatric abuse is not investigated in-house, in the manner of police complaints. Reflect for a second on how much suffering is occasioned by the latter. Let’s not err in the direction of the former.