Canada uses “bird-dogging tactics” to force meeting with health minister

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

Toronto: #MillionsMissing activists attended their federal health minister’s “meet-and-greet” on Jan. 14th to ask the health minister to respond publicly to their request that she announce Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) is a biological – and not psychological – illness.
This tactic to pin down an official with a specific question in a public venue is called “bird-dogging.”
Their persistence was rewarded with the health minister agreeing to set up a meeting with the activists to discuss their demands for ME.
The activists, a group of 10, had invited CTV News to broadcast their conversation with federal Health Minister Jane Philpott.
They waited for their turn to speak to the health minister and, with the TV camera rolling, asked her to commit to the following for ME:

  • Announce that ME is a biological – and not psychological – illness.
  • Ensure that physicians start using the Canadian Consensus Criteria for diagnosing patients.
  • Commit to developing a national strategy for ME.

“We explained [to Philpott] that these small gestures would have a profound effect on the lives of those with ME,” said Scott Simpson who organized the event.
In response, Minister Philpott said she receives a lot of requests for National Strategies every week. She would not commit to making a public announcement that ME is biological, Simpson said.
The activists decided that the health minister’s response was not good enough. Simpson got onto a chair, and in a very loud voice said,  “Sorry to interrupt your meet-and-greet but there is something very important that the Canadian public needs to know,” and then he began to tell the room about the government’s neglect of people with ME.
Minister Philpott responded that she would speak with the activists after the meet-and-greet, and then she agreed to set up a meeting with Simpson to discuss their demands for ME.
View the live TV coverage of the event here, and read the press coverage here.
Read more about bird-dogging tactics here. In the U.S., attend a bird-dogging training call on how to protect the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicare and Medicaid by registering here.

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on whatsapp
WhatsApp
Share on google
Google+
Share on email
Email

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest News

NHS England omits advice to apply clinical judgement re vaccine

It has come to light that a letter from NHS England and NHS Improvement to all vaccination centres and GPs in the UK has omitted advice that health professionals can and should apply their clinical judgement when placing people in group 6. Vaccination of people with underlying health conditions that put them at risk of

Read More »
Waiting for Superman Book on table

Waiting for Superman – UK Book Giveaway and Review

Do you want to win a free copy of Waiting for Superman? We have three copies to give away to people in the UK!  To enter, all you have to do is follow #MEAction UK on Instagram, like and comment on this post. The deadline is 9am (GMT) Monday 8th March! Win a copy! Thank

Read More »
#MEAction activists outside Scottish Parliament

Scottish Election! Ask your MSPs to support people with ME

If you live in Scotland, please join our campaign to ask your MSPs to pledge their support for people with ME. Email your MSPs The Holyrood elections are coming up on 6 May 2021 and we want to make sure that MSPs are aware of ME and the desperate need for support. There are more

Read More »

Help keep our work going

We rely on donations from people like you to keep fighting for equality for people with ME.

Donate

Get actions alerts and news direct to your inbox

You can choose what you want to be kept up to date on.

Subscribe
Scroll to Top