Theses (Public Administration)

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    Transparency, Accountability, and Accessibility: A Comparative Analysis of the Publication of Transition Documents through the Context of British Columbia, Manitoba, and Canada
    (2024-01-29) Olynyk, Madison; Speers, Kimberly
    This thesis sheds light on transparency, accountability, and accessibility efforts through the lens of British Columbia’s recently published transition documents. Using a multiple case study approach, with cases being the Government of British Columbia’s British Columbia’s website and published transition documents from 2020 and 2022, this research discusses similarities and differences between three of British Columbia’s ministry’s transition binders and compares findings to government transition documents and websites in the Government of Canada and Manitoba. Ultimately, one of the key findings from this research is that British Columbia meets more of the transparency, accountability, and accessibility criteria outlined in this thesis than the Governments of Manitoba and Canada. The research finds that the Government of British Columbia makes it easier for citizens to hold their governments accountable than the Governments of Canada and Manitoba. Regarding accessibility and transparency, British Columbia performs well: on par with the Government of Canada and better than the Government of Manitoba. Additionally, ministry-specific findings in British Columbia prove that ministries may be given some level of independence when supporting these initiatives. The thesis also identifies the areas where British Columbia has the potential to improve these metrics when publicizing its binders.
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    Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Implementation of Indigenous Relations and Leadership Competencies in Leadership Competitions at the BC Office of the Auditor General
    (2024-01-29) Moore, Natalie; Ney, Tara
    The BC Public Service is working towards improving diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). The BC Office of the Auditor General (BC OAG) is also making commitments to improve DEI in the organization. The purpose of this thesis is to assist with these improvements, focusing on how DEI can be better incorporated into hiring practices for leaders at the BC OAG. Specifically, this thesis is seeking to determine how the BC OAG implements competencies in leadership competitions in a way that aligns with these DEI commitments. To assess this, the researcher undertook a qualitative mixed methods research approach, consisting of a cross-jurisdictional scan of Canadian audit offices, structured interviews with BC OAG staff members who had been panelists on leadership competitions, and a document review of leadership competition files. From the cross-jurisdictional scan, the key finding is that Canadian audit offices value and plan around DEI quite differently from one another. The key finding from the structured interviews is that DEI is not a requirement in competency implementation at the BC OAG, nor is it a requirement for panelists to utilize a DEI lens in their role on leadership panels. The key finding from the document review is that the competencies the BC OAG utilizes in leadership competitions have the potential to incorporate DEI, but this incorporation is inconsistent. From these findings, an option was presented to the BC OAG to develop its own explicit DEI competency that is tested for in every leadership competition.
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    Front-liners on the Sidelines: The credential recognition experiences of Filipino internationally-educated nurses (IENs) in Victoria, British Columbia (BC)
    (2024-01-19) Leonida, Micah; Krawchenko, Tamara
    The impacts of the nursing labour shortage are being felt across Canada but especially in Victoria, BC where place-based realities have impacted internationally-educated nurses’ (IEN) professional pursuits. Rising inflation, housing costs, and living expenses create challenging contexts for IENs from the Philippines who aim to settle, integrate and complete professional recertification processes in order to become registered nurses in BC. As provinces across the country vie for nurses to alleviate strains on the health care system, this study explores Filipino IENs’ integration experiences and settlement barriers. The study examines to what extent these factors might have influenced their educational upgrading, professional recertification, and workplace acculturation experiences. This exploratory study rooted in an interpretivist paradigm examines the experiences of nurses from the Philippines who recently migrated to Victoria in the last ten years. The key findings of the study posit that financial barriers, time barriers, deskilling, and mental health challenges are the most prevalent obstacles encountered by Filipino IENs in Victoria, BC. These findings are further expanded upon in order to understand the impacts that migration pathways, post- and pre-arrival immigration processes, familial responsibilities, English-language requirements, workplace discrimination and professional recertification pathways have on the complex integration and settlement experiences of Filipino IENs in Victoria, BC. Nine recommendations are proposed including the creation of more efficient migration pathways, investing in accessible information supports, prioritising effective communication, designing equitable policies that account for familial responsibilities, supporting flexible English language requirements, developing local navigational supports for IENs, addressing deskilling, adapting professional recertification pathways, and increasing collaboration between clinical practice programs.
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    Addressing Jurisdictional Friction on Healthcare Access for scəẃaθən məsteyəxw Children: A case study approach to understanding the implications of jurisdictional friction in creating barriers to equitable healthcare access for Tsawwassen Children.
    (2023-12-21) Harris, Rowan; Thiessen, Susanne
    This thesis explores the implications of jurisdictional friction on healthcare access for children of scəẃaθən məsteyəxw - Tsawwassen First Nation (“TFN”), a modern treaty nation in British Columbia. To support this exploration, a critical instance case study and an Indigenous methodology were employed, utilizing in-depth interviews with five participants from TFN and a document analysis of related literature. The research methods were supported by a literature review that examined jurisdictional friction through inadequate service access, jurisdictional divides, and colonial policies. The findings reveal that due to jurisdictional friction, Tsawwassen Children continue to experience structural and individual barriers when accessing healthcare services off Tsawwassen Lands. Jurisdictional friction is furthered through intergovernmental and interorganizational relations over responsibility for the funding and delivery of health services to Tsawwassen Children. This friction results from colonial healthcare administration, a lack of distinctions-based recognition, and a lack of implementation of the Tsawwassen Final Agreement.
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    How experiences affect decision-making: Exploring the phenomenon of access to healthcare through the stories of Indigenous women in British Columbia.
    (2023-12-20) Smith, Paige Elizabeth; Thiessen, Susanne
    This thesis explores how Indigenous women experience barriers to accessing healthcare in British Columbia (B.C.) and how their experiences influence their health-related decisions. The intention was to explore how lived experiences with the provincially funded healthcare system affect if at all, Indigenous women’s decision to access healthcare and consider the potential future implications. The phenomenon of access to healthcare for Indigenous women was explored by analyzing pre-existing literature and conducting in-depth qualitative interviews with Indigenous women. The data collected from the interviews were analyzed through Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. By listening to and amplifying the realities of Indigenous women’s experiences, this research is contributing toward reconciliation. As a non-Indigenous researcher conducting research with Indigenous Peoples, applying and honouring Indigenous research methods and principles of data governance was equally important. Indigenous Researchers at the University of Victoria guided this work along with the CARE principles for Indigenous Data Governance and the Four R’s of Indigenous Research. The analysis indicated the significance of relationality and connection with providers and the system through which Indigenous women access care. It established that these were critical factors affecting their decision-making. Further, this study demonstrates the need for increased understanding and appreciation of Indigeneity within the healthcare systems and the unwavering perseverance that Indigenous women embody to advocate for their and others’ equitable care. This thesis could enrich the development and application of services supporting Indigenous communities and strengthen current healthcare practices and policies by accepting alternative forms of care outside Western healthcare.
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    Here We Will Bloom: Current State of Nonprofit Arts Programs in Newcomer Reintegration in Canada
    (2023-12-20) Nel, Susanne; Speers, Kimberly
    The purpose of the study is to describe the current state of arts and culture programs offered by newcomer-serving nonprofits located in Canadian urban centres. The work recommends smart practices for nonprofit use of arts and culture practices to support the reintegration process undertaken by immigrants and refugees as they pursue fair participation in the host country. The study follows a qualitative methodological approach, using key informant interviews and a document scan of representative programs to collect data and coupling gap analysis with conventional content analysis. The fifteen major themes identified explain how nonprofit arts and culture programs support reintegration and inform three smart practices recommendations with implications for newcomer leadership and collaborative design, goals prioritization, and multidisciplinary service.
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    Performance-based budgeting in Canada: Assessing the association between past performance and subsequent resource allocation
    (2023-11-28) Whittla, Curtis; Rhodes, Katya
    Performance-based budgeting (PBB) is a common performance management practice throughout OECD countries where performance information is directly or indirectly linked to resource allocations in the budgetary process. Canada has had various systems of PBB in place since at least 1969, with the most recent changes being implemented in 2016. Despite these recent changes, few studies have examined the allocative efficiency of Canada’s PBB system, which purports to allocate resources in a way that optimizes performance (TBS, 2016). Using panel data spanning eight fiscal years from 2014-15 to 2021-22, this study aims to measure the correlation between past performance and subsequent resource allocation at the organizational level and provide recommendations to improve PBB processes. The analysis found that for every one percentage point increase in average organizational performance, an additional 0.23 percentage points of spending was allocated in the subsequent budget, demonstrating a modest but statistically significant level of allocative efficiency. This result was not found for staffing allocations. These analyses provide some preliminary findings in the Canadian government context which support theories about the allocative efficiency of PBB. These findings differ from the results of an earlier study of PBB in Canada conducted by the Office of the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) in 2014, which found no statistically significant correlation between performance and resource allocation at the organizational level. This study concludes by providing some recommendations to strengthen Canada’s PBB systems, including recommending Canada’s approach to PBB as an example of creating allocative efficiency, promoting the use of performance information in budgetary decision-making and politics, providing consistent and full public data to scholars and budgetary oversight bodies like the PBO for better analysis, and maintaining more consistent indicators across multiple fiscal years.
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    The Beauty Underneath: Revitalizing Indigenous Shellfish Harvest in Semiahmoo Bay
    (2023-10-04) Juteau, Christy; Wiebe, Sarah Marie; Lapper, Robert
    North American coastal Indigenous communities have feasted from the tidelands since time immemorial. Abundant clams, oysters, mussels, seaweed and other marine resources provided seasonal sustenance, opportunity for communities to gather, to share intergenerational knowledge, ceremony, language and cultural values. Since settler contact, land development, pollution and overharvest have diminished native oyster populations and contaminated clams and other marine resources. Current colonial coastal governance has responded with blanket shellfish harvest closures along much of the British Columbia coastline, walking away from the problem, and focusing attention on areas important for commercial harvest. This participatory action research focuses on the transboundary waters of Boundary Bay (Steloqwen in SENĆOŦEN), home of the Semiahmoo First Nation people. This place-based study reveals pathways towards revitalizing Indigenous shellfish harvest on the Canadian side of Steloqwen, through complex social-ecological system analysis and Indigenous resurgence and storytelling. While there are potential future economic benefits to Semiahmoo First Nation through the re-opening of shellfish harvesting beds, Semiahmoo are primarily interested in revitalizing their traditional practices of being out on the land, digging for clams, having opportunity for elders to share with young people about culture and language and connection to the bay. They want to restore reciprocal relationships that have been lost through contaminated waters and unjust governance. Through a literature review, jurisdictional interviews and Indigenous storytelling workshops, key barriers and opportunities were identified and discussed to reveal a pathway towards revitalizing shellfish harvest in Steloqwen. Firstly, jurisdictional roles and responsibilities related to coastal ecosystem management need to be clarified and re-defined to close existing governance gaps and to be aligned with Indigenous values. Secondly, pollution sources must be identified and controlled, which requires both a consistent, coordinated, and well-communicated monitoring plan as well as a collaborative approach to addressing the variety of potential pollution sources. And thirdly, Semiahmoo First Nation capacity must be bolstered to provide a leadership role in collaborative efforts. All three of these key barriers can be addressed by taking a two-eyed seeing approach, weaving systems analysis and Semiahmoo Indigenous teachings to reveal innovative solutions. In conclusion, this will involve: 1) ȻEN,TOEL, jurisdictional alignment to allow for Indigenous led collaborative watershed remediation, 2) ĆEĆINES, Indigenous led watershed governance with teeth to hold jurisdictions accountable, and 3) XĆETSW̱, Indigenous led collaborative process of looking over, measuring, figuring out and deciding where the pollution sources are and how best to address them. All of these solutions rely on Indigenous capacity to provide leadership and uphold their rights of sovereignty and self-determination. To operationalize this research, Semiahmoo First Nation must be acknowledged and supported as leaders with the capacity and authority to carry out governance in their territory, influencing land and water management on a watershed scale. Short, medium and long-term steps are recommended to achieve the vision of revitalized shellfish harvest and a healthy bay ecosystem.
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    Good Roads 2.0: An Analysis of the Impacts of Rail-Trail Organizations on Strategic Planning, Community-Building and Economic Revitalization
    (2023-09-13) Mihell, Natasha; Speers, Kimberly
    Friends of Rails to Trails Vancouver Island (“FORT-VI”) seeks to develop a 224km rail-trail corridor from Victoria, British Columbia (“BC”) to Courtenay, BC, with an additional spur from Parksville to Port Alberni. To advance and manage this goal, FORT-VI asked for a comparative analysis of five different rail-trail initiatives that outlines the potential and likely impact, challenges or barriers that stand in the way of developing a rail-trail corridor, and smart practices or successes of similar projects around the world. Influenced by Bryson’s (2018) strategic change cycle, this paper identifies potential outcomes of rail-trails initiatives across multiple policy areas that include: health, recreation and ecological economics; and land use, reconciliation and governance. The analysis demonstrates that, while FORT-VI’s initiative may be suspended indefinitely due to external influences, there is much information to be gleaned about the value of rail-trails across all policy areas, which can assist FORT-VI in its continued advocacy for a rail-trail on Vancouver Island. Not only can this information support the development of rail-trails like FORT-VI’s Island Rail Corridor, but it can also benefit other areas that are looking to develop rail-trails. Lastly, it can assist various associated actors, such as First Nations in the Vancouver Island area, who may be interested in supporting a rails-trails initiative or learning more about such initiatives in general.
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    Getting the Job Done: Understanding Barriers and Enablers to Municipal Climate Action in Greater Victoria
    (2023-09-13) Masemann, Charlotte Emilia; Krawchenko, Tamara
    Municipalities in Greater Victoria are dedicated to climate action and municipal officials deal with both barriers and enablers in implementing climate solutions. Focus groups held with municipal staff members in the thematic areas of buildings and energy, sustainable transportation and solid waste reveal that these barriers and enablers fall into six categories: funding, staffing, legislation/regulation, governance, information, and politics. Focus group participants expressed that they remain firmly enmeshed in the hierarchy of Canadian federalism, with upper levels of government having control over much of the funding and legislative/regulatory powers important for climate action. Three types of instruments are used in climate action: regulations, economic measures and information. The province controls most of the regulations and economic measures, leaving the municipalities of Greater Victoria with inadequate or inappropriate access to both. Political will and information exchange enable existing climate action, but lack of autonomy over the most effective policy instruments was identified as a barrier for municipalities.
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    Executive Women: Designing Quality of Work Life in the Public Service
    (2023-09-07) Confreda, Sara; Cunningham, J. Barton
    The purpose of this report is to gain a deeper understanding of quality of work life (QWL), particularly for women executives in the public service. The study is exploratory, focused on identifying factors that contribute to a positive QWL and how this population group would improve and design their QWL. A literature review is conducted of relevant literature on QWL, providing a history of the concept and frameworks researchers used, and factors that are considered important to employees and women. An original conceptual framework was developed from the relevant literature that focuses on different areas of QWL and was implemented into the interview guide. Fifteen interviews were conducted with women executives in the public service to gather their experiences and thoughts on QWL. Interview findings were analyzed using thematic analysis and grounded theory to identify key themes. Participants discussed many aspects that were important in their QWL and considerations for improvement. They considered work impact, relationships, autonomy, flexibility, and open work environment to be important. When asked how they would improve their QWL, they suggested improving the sustainability of their work-life balance and better prioritization in their organization. Implications of the research are addressed, and recommendations are provided based on the themes identified in the literature and interview findings.
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    Perception of Professionalism and Impacts on Health Human Resource Decision-Making
    (2023-08-29) Bilinski, Julia; Lapper, Robert G. W.
    Health human resources have been strained due to global health emergencies and previous decisions that shape care policies and delivery today. This thesis explores the perception of professional legitimacy of healthcare occupations by health human resources decision-makers, by bringing two British Columbia case studies and perspectives of decision-makes into the academic discourse. The focus of the analysis is the possible effect of the occupational regulatory status of healthcare workers on the perception of professional legitimacy among decision-makers and the potential effect of this perception on Health Human Resource policy. The analysis of two case studies, Bills 29 and 94: Impact on Unregulated Healthcare Workers, and Changes to the Health Professions Act, and interviews with former provincial decision-makers in health human resources, yielded many themes that align with the reviewed literature. This thesis finds that regulatory status might affect the perceived professionalism of healthcare occupations by making decision-makers more likely to listen to a regulated occupation. Recommendations are also presented that include increase of inclusive government consultation and collaboration, use of Gender-based Analysis Plus, integration of a public interest perspective, and bias training for public servants to promote greater representational equity of all health occupations in policy decisions in human health resources.
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    Approaches to Treat Opioid Use and Concurrent Mental Health Disorders in Canada: An Exploratory Analysis of Psychedelic-Assisted Psychotherapy
    (2023-08-10) Johl, Jasmine; Speers, Kimberly
    The opioid crisis is one of the most significant public health and policy challenges facing Canadians today, with 94% of opioid overdose deaths occurring by accident, impacting not only individuals, but families, friends and communities involved. The research identified policy initiatives, legislative and regulatory approaches implemented in Canada to respond to the opioid crisis. In particular, the thesis focused on how these approaches have addressed opioid use disorders and concurrent mental health disorders. Research has identified that over 50% of those experiencing opioid use disorder also experience concurrent mental health disorders. Several studies have linked opioid use disorder to concurrent mental health disorders of post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression, which have been clinically proven to be cured by psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy and in some cases, surpassing success rates of conventional psychotherapies. Currently, psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy is not a treatment option within Canada’s opioid crisis response and psychedelic substances are heavily restricted by the Government of Canada (only available for extenuating circumstances, such as end-of-life care). This research focuses on these and other policy, legislative and regulatory frameworks that could present barriers and/or opportunities for a complementary treatment option like psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy to treat opioid use disorder and concurrent mental health disorders. A comparative case study research approach was used for this research. A jurisdiction scan was conducted to explore the opioid crisis response to date by the Government of Canada and the five hardest hit provinces and territories – Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Yukon. Included in this scan was the legislative and regulatory frameworks that exist in Canada related to psychedelics and psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy. In conclusion, jurisdictional successes from Saskatchewan’s focus on trauma-informed practice and Alberta’s recent regulation of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy are highlighted. Recommendations on next steps for the federal/provincial/territorial governments' approach to psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy are provided, including researching the efficacy and safety of psychedelics alongside opioid agonist therapy.
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    An Evaluation of the “What Matters to You” Initiative
    (2023-08-10) Tian, Xintong; Chouinard, Jill Anne
    The purpose of this evaluation is to evaluate the operation and outcomes of the WMTY initiative, identify challenges and successes, and provide enhancements to the project. WMTY is an initiative-based program that advocates for people to practice a WMTY conversation based on respect and attention from healthcare workers for the needs and values of patients, ultimately leading to a cultural shift towards patient- and family-centered care (PFCC). In partnership with health care organizations across the province, BC Patient Safety & Quality Council (BCPSQC) is encouraging providers to have “What matters to you?” conversations each day with the people they support or care for. The main goals of the WMTY initiatives are. 1. To encourage meaningful conversations between patients, caregivers, and family, and their health care providers 2. To encourage distributed leaders and ambassadors within the health care system and patient, family and caregiver partners to seek opportunities to embed WMTY into practice. 3. To encourage health care providers and patient partners to participate in and spread the initiative as they see fit. 4. To create a shift within the health care system around patient and family centred care as an integral part of improving quality of care WMTY's evaluation questions revolve around the three phases of the WMTY project: 1) planning and engagement, 2) implementation, and 3) outcome. According to the program objectives, six main evaluation questions were delineated. 1. What strategies are being used to promote & spread the WMTY initiative? What worked well? What needs improvement? 2.To what extent was WMTY videos/resources (on website) successful in providing the necessary knowledge, skills to HC providers? To what extent are the training materials/resources adequate? 3.To what extent were the WMTY physical resources successful in WMTY promotion and providing the necessary knowledge, skills to HC providers? Are they adequate? 4.What is the coverage and quality of real practice of WMTY? What are the obstacles and challenges? 5.To what extent has WMTY improved the quality of patient care? 6. What are the successes, challenges, and lessons learned of the initiative? What needs improvement? In view of the project’s research approach, the evaluation is both summative and formative. After a review of similar evaluation literature, mixed quantitative and qualitative approaches was adopted with a pioneering quantitative survey and a subsequent in-depth qualitative interview. In the course of the evaluation, 136 electronic surveys were completed by BCPSQC newsletter subscribers and 9 WMTY partners were interviewed. The evaluation found that the WMTY initiative met most of the goals, with WMTY’s promotion, support, and implementation activities being successful. The evaluation also summarized the complex challenges facing WMTY and provided recommendations for BCPSQC to further develop the WMTY initiative. Workloads, budget constraints, and other environmental obstacles also suggest that WMTY programs need financial and policy support from health care authorities.
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    A cross-country comparative analysis of congestion pricing systems to achieve decarbonization goals
    (2023-07-11) Veitch, Erica; Rhodes, Katya
    Alongside national and sub-national climate action, local governments play a particularly important role in implementing climate change mitigation policy. While substantial efforts are being taken to reduce GHG emissions in some communities, additional efforts are needed to encourage behavioural change in driving demand and mode of transit choice. Congestion pricing is a key policy which can motivate this change. Using a comparative analysis of global congestion pricing systems, this thesis examines government policy documents and academic literature to identify policy design features that are most desirable for achieving GHG and air quality emissions targets. Specifically, congestion pricing policies are evaluated against the criteria of implementation context, design characteristics, effectiveness, and political acceptability. In total, 16 congestion pricing systems across 11 cities in OECD member countries are assessed. Findings suggest that area-based congestion pricing systems can provide local governments with a relatively cost-effective tool to implement consistent reductions in greenhouse gas emissions in areas with a pre-existing air quality concern. Congestion pricing policies can achieve broad acceptability with thoughtful design and implementation focusing on equity and user engagement.
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    Local government animal bylaws in British Columbia: current state analysis and emerging practices
    (2023-07-11) Trux, Luisa M; Speers, Kimberly
    This research presents an exploration of the current state of animal bylaws across the 25 most populated municipalities in B.C. and the identification of emerging practices for animal bylaws. The focus is on the duties placed on owners to both control their animals to prevent threats and provide care for them to ensure their wellbeing. Findings include a gradual shift in some animal bylaws from regulations focused on control and preventing threats stemming from animals, in particular dogs, towards a more all-encompassing approach that promotes responsible pet ownership. This entails a balance between control requirements and care requirements that recognizes both the potential risks associated with pets and their ability to have positive impacts on individuals and communities. The thesis concludes with several recommendations for municipalities considering changing their animal bylaws, including the need for comprehensive provisions on cats and increased care and anti-cruelty requirements, as well as an overview of areas for further research.
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    Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy policy tools in western Canada
    (2023-05-08) Masai, Salim Musa; Speers, Kimberly
    Canada’s four western provinces largely converged in implementing Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy and uptake policy tools. This thesis analyzes these tools and focuses on vaccine mandates, vaccine passports, and related policy tools. The method applied was data analysis, and two frameworks, a policy tool framework and a vaccine hesitancy framework, were applied. Using these, information was interpreted from two sources of grey literature, government websites and news media articles published from late 2020 to early 2022. All four western provincial governments were found to substantially adopt agreed upon recommendations from scholars in the fields of public health, public health communication, and vaccination. Manitoba was most successful in adopting these measures, followed by Saskatchewan, but counter to expert recommendations, Alberta implemented extensive financial inducements to improve vaccination uptake. While BC obtained the highest vaccination rates, it was the only province of the four that did not provide an option of testing in lieu of vaccination, a decision by the Minister of Health. This was the case for employees in its public service agency, its healthcare sector, or for residents in general regarding its vaccine passport. Vaccine passports and vaccine mandates raised concerns about informed consent. This exhibited a clash between principles of governance involving the legitimate use of coercion, and how informed consent in medicine requires the absence of coercion. This thesis argues that, in some cases, these actions violated the Charter protected right to bodily integrity. These concerns implied one of two requirements regarding vaccine passports and vaccine mandates: either a clear expression of specific risks proportional to their coercive force as justification, which was not forthcoming; or mitigation of their coercive force, which testing in lieu accomplished. Therefore, three of the western provinces substantially met the ethical requirements implied by their vaccine passports and vaccine mandates by implementing the mitigating option of testing in lieu. Yet based on the criteria as established in this thesis, BC did not meet these ethical requirements.
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    First Nations Health Governance in British Columbia: Strategic Planning and Performance Reporting in the First Nations Health Authority
    (2023-05-04) Cheema, Hardeep; Speers, Kimberly
    The low health status of First Nations people in the Province of British Columbia and persistent gaps in health outcomes as compared with other provincial residents led to the founding of the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) in 2013. With less than a decade of operations, there have been limited evaluative studies assessing performance of this unique first-of-its-kind health authority in Canada that is run by and for First Nations. An in-depth document analysis of all FNHA service plans and annual reports to date shows the development of strategic planning and performance reporting processes in the context of a new and growing organization. A detailed analysis into this type of organizational literature is helpful in highlighting areas of misalignment and improving planning and reporting processes. In a public sector context, analysis of service plans and annual reports is particularly useful in assessing performance and accountability where the metric of profitability is not a consideration as it is with private-sector organizations.
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    Beyond Legal: A Feminist Intersectional Analysis of the Policy Landscape Shaping Indigenous Women’s Access to Abortion Services in Canada
    (2023-05-04) Miller, Danielle; Pérez Piñán, Astrid
    This thesis locates proven barriers in access to abortion services for Indigenous women in Canada within the policy landscape. It points to opportunities for policy reform to improve access and ultimately, reproductive justice for this population. Critical policy studies and feminist and intersectionality-based policy analysis theory were used to assess documents determined through background research to form the policy landscape. This extended to their design, text, and implementation. Studied federal-level documents included the Indian Act, the Constitution Act, the Indian Health Policy, the Health Transfer Policy, the Canada Health Act, and the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program. Manitoba was assessed as a case study of provincial-level policy given its high proportion of Indigenous residents and evidenced issues in access for this population. This is research that has not been conducted before. It makes a valuable contribution to the literature at a time in which significant political attention is being paid to the subject of abortion access in Canada and to the federal framework for Indigenous health care.
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    Remote Work in Early Career: Examining the Federal Public Service
    (2023-05-01) Kerr, Samuel; Speers, Kimberly
    The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted how Canada’s federal public service worked in a significant manner. In March 2020, hundreds of thousands of public servants transitioned to remote work in the National Capital Region and across the country in a matter of days. This thesis explores the effect that this transition had on individual well-being, worker stress, and organizational outcomes with a small sample in the federal public service. Using semi-structured interviews, it examines the responses of fifteen early career public servants (n=15) to questions about changing job demands and resources, social and technical aspects of work, and preferences on the future of work. It interprets these findings in the context of Bakker and Demerouti’s Job-Demands Resources Model (2006), Emery and Trist’s (1960) socio-technical system of job design, and Simon’s (1990) concept of bounded rationality. This work found that work-life balance, focus, connection, rewards, and safety/well-being were job resources that workers could use in a remote format, while technology, environment, role clarity/mentorship, work hours, and overwork were job demands. The technical aspect of work productivity improved while no consensus formed for performance, and the social aspect of work support declined, while no consensus formed for career progression. The findings revealed that in aggregate the technical aspects of work improved, and the social aspects declined. Public servants’ preferences on the future of work were evenly split between continuing remote work indefinitely or transitioning to a hybrid model, with only one interviewee expressing a preference for fully in-person work. Therefore, this thesis found that hybrid work policies should be designed to capitalize on the advantages and limit the downsides of remote work, that the federal public service should not immediately attempt to return to completely mandatory in-person work, and that the limitations of hybrid work should be recognized. In this context, this research provides preliminary insight into the field of remote work.