EDMONTON – Alberta Ombudsman, Kevin Brezinski and his staff met with the African Canadian Civic Engagement Council (ACCEC) today. The organization, led by Executive Director and President, Dunia Nur, is a national public affairs organization that promotes and strengthens opportunities for African, Caribbean, Black and Racialized Communities.
“ACCEC’s research initiatives speak to the lived experiences of Black people and centres on the emerging issues and challenges people of African descent face every day,” stated Ms. Nur. “Today’s discussion about administrative fairness is very timely. We will soon be launching Alberta’s African Justice Strategy initiative to support people of African descent who are overrepresented in the justice system. Through this program and others, we remain committed to ensuring the dignity and human rights of people of African descent.”
The Ombudsman office exists to provide citizens an avenue to complain about unfair treatment they have experienced in the public service. Whether it is a disagreement stemming from an important decision or a complaint about a public program or service, the Ombudsman’s office considers each issue and works to overcome roadblocks.
February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate the achievements and contributions of Black Canadians and their communities throughout history. Events are scheduled throughout the province in most communities, including the local libraries, schools and through municipality websites.
“The diversity, culture and prosperity we enjoy in this province is an expression of the significant contributions of Alberta’s Black communities,” said Brezinski. “As we take time to celebrate, we acknowledge there is more work to be done to ensure equitable treatment across the province. In building relationships with organizations such as the ACCEC, my office is working to better understand the systemic barriers to fair treatment facing African, Caribbean, Black and Racialized communities.”
Before the Ombudsman can investigate, a complainant must first complete the complaint process with the agency that has denied the service. Advice on how to find these review processes can also be obtained from an Ombudsman’s investigator.
Feeling stuck or uncertain where to begin? Complaints can be registered in a variety of ways, including an online complaint form, email and regular mail. Visit this link for a short video about how to get in contact with the Ombudsman’s office or call us toll free at 1.888.455.2756.
Agencies and programs within the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction that might offer services to the people ACCEC’s serves are: Alberta Human Rights Commission; Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP) Workers Compensation Board; Student Finance Board; the Patient Concerns Resolution Process of Alberta Health Services, Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD); Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD), Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH), Income Support; and Aids to Daily Living