CSMB advocacy update

 

On Friday, June 25, the Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences, in partnership with the Canadian Association for Neuroscience welcomed former Minister of Science and current Member of Parliament, Dr. Kirsty Duncan to an event on Science and Government 101. During the session, Dr. Duncan stressed the need for scientists and researchers to get involved, with a unified voice, in advocating to government on how scientific evidence matters. As said best by Dr. Duncan, “We can’t continue on two separate tracks… where science doesn’t know politics, and politics doesn’t know science”. Heeding her advice, the CSMB is planning for future engagement with government officials, especially in light of a potential Fall 2021 election.

Further details will follow once the timing of the election is clear, but we will be supporting Members with their election engagement through the preparation and sharing of template tweets and social media advice, one-page documents with election priorities, and support for Members looking to reach out to their local candidates.

In the meantime, if you were looking to engage with your local Member of Parliament over the summer and would like some support, please reach out to Kristina Proulx from Temple Scott Associates at kproulx@tsa.ca and she will try her best to coordinate a meeting on your behalf.

 

The CSMB wins Research Canada’s Organization Leadership in Advocacy Award

Press release by Research Canada
OTTAWA, June 9, 2021 – Research Canada is pleased to announce the 2021 Individual and Organization Leadership in Advocacy Awardees: Dr. Aubie Angel, the founding and current President of Friends of CIHR (FCIHR), a professor at the University of Manitoba and President and Board Chair of the Diabetes Research and Treatment Centre, and the Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences, a professional association of active researchers and students in the fields of biochemistry, cell biology, molecular biology and genetics.

The Research Canada Leadership in Advocacy Award recognizes outstanding champions of health research and health innovation. Recognition of Canadian health research—the kind that attracts the necessary public and political support—often comes from the dedicated and tireless efforts of health research advocates who educate policymakers, the media and the public about the social and economic benefits of health research and its promise of future cures and, importantly, a better quality of life for all Canadians. This year’s winners exemplify this. + + +

Invitation to participate in pre-budget consultations by the Department of Finance

Dear CSMB members

We would like to bring to your attention that the government is currently soliciting feedback in advance of Budget 2021 and invites all Canadians to fill out the following questionnaire.

https://letstalkbudget2021.ca/pre_budget_consultations

This consultation is open until February 19, 2021

We encourage you to provide your feedback, and particularly this question:

If you were designing the federal budget, what would you like to see in it to help create jobs and grow Canada’s economy? 

We encourage you to review the recent pre-budget CSMB submission and our recommendations, here is what CSMB recommends

That the Government implement all recommendations from the 2017 Fundamental Science Review, notably:

    • Recommendation 1: That the Government significantly increase investment in science and discovery research in line with the recommendations of the Report, by 25%.
    • Recommendation 2: That the Government increase investment in training of the next generation of scientists, over 4 years, to an additional $140M per year (increases at $35M per year).
    • Recommendation 3: That the Government increase its investment in the Research Support Fund, over 4 years, to an additional $478M to help institutions across Canada to support their researchers as effectively and efficiently as possible.
    • Recommendation 4: That the Government increase investments to support  investigator initiated fundamental research at CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC by increased investments into the granting councils.

Science has an important role to play in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the voice of scientists needs to be heard.

Please participate in these important consultations!

Dr. Imogen R. Coe

President of the Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences

CSMB President Imogen Coe at the Canadian Science Policy Conference Tuesday November 17 8:30AM

Watch the session Roles & Responsibilities of Academic Science Societies in informing Policy: Lessons & Observations from Around the World – November 17th at 8:30 via zoom, as part of the Canadian Science Policy Conference which takes place virtually this year.

Take a look at the whole program here: https://sciencepolicyconference.ca/program-2020-2/

Panel description and participants

In contrast to other parts of the world, science societies in Canada have traditionally had limited interaction with policy makers. There are few examples of an intentional mission by science societies or even perhaps a perceived need among scientists to engage with politicians, decision makers or policy influencers with the exception of, perhaps, the Royal Society of Canada, which has, to some degree, tried to provide academic input to the federal government on specific issues. + + +