Abells Henry Public Affairs Home Page

Examples of our legislative, regulatory and policy analysis work

Client: Alberta Centre for Child, Family & Community Research (ACCFCR)

Provincial Protocol Framework for a Common Approach to Providing Programs and Specialized Services for Preschool Children with Severe Disabilities

Services: Capacity Building and Adaptive Management (2011 to 2012)
This common approach coordinates programs and services that are currently funded separately by Alberta Education, which provides public and private schools with funding for Early Childhood Services (ECS) programs through Program Unit Funding (PUF); and Human Services, which provides families with specialized services through Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD).This Provincial Protocol Framework presented a guide for the development and delivery of a common approach to provide families with a single, coordinated plan implemented by a single service team to ensure continuity and consistency of approach across all settings (home, ECS program, and community).

Client: Government of Alberta, Alberta Education

Action on Inclusion: Literature Review Supporting a Continuum of Supports and Services.

Services: Capacity Building and Adaptive Management (2011)
The Government of Alberta is developing a plan for Action on Inclusion, creating a continuum of supports and services to meet the individual and unique learning needs of all students in Grades 1 though 12. Susan Abells examined the theory of inclusion and identified key elements that should be included to support its implementation, and then analyzed the legislative, policy and planning context in Alberta that would support the development and implementation of such a continuum in Alberta.

Client: United Way of the Alberta Capital Region, Success by Six®

Literature Review: Early Years Continuum Project

Services: Capacity Building and Adaptive Management (2011)
This paper supported the work of four pilot sites in Alberta that were examining how they can address gaps in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) services in their communities and improve the experiences of families through increased cooperation, coordination and collaboration. The paper analyzed and defined key ECEC terms based on leading international theory and practice. It then examined the Canadian government's current approach to funding ECEC, and presented three case studies of delivery models, analyzing how ECEC services are currently provided in Ontario (through Best Start Child and Family Centres), British Columbia (through StrongStart BC) and Australia (through Early Childhood Schools). The paper concluded by presenting the implications of this investigation, and how these findings may inform the delivery of ECEC services in Alberta.

Client: Government of Alberta, Alberta Environment

Governance Framework for a Cumulative Effects Management System

Services: Governance, Policy Analysis, Organizational Learning, Adaptive Management (2009 to 2010)
Susan Abells and Michael Henry designed a governance framework to describe how the Government of Alberta is to work with stakeholders to achieve environmental outcomes within a Cumulative Effects Management System. It was designed to support the implementation of regional plans under the government's Land-use Framework as enacted under the Alberta Land Stewardship Act. The framework was developed in three phases:

• Phase One (June 2009) reported on lessons learned within Alberta Environment on achieving outcomes by working with partnerships, especially those established under the government's Water for Life Strategy, and included interviews and workshops with Alberta Environment senior executives and staff.

• Phase Two (October 2009) proposed a governance framework for cumulative effects management that went beyond traditional understandings of governance as roles, responsibilities and accountabilities to identify challenges of integration and collaboration, including a methodology to address these challenges.

• Phase Three (March 2010) reported on different models used to manage different types of government functions, focusing on a new approach where public servants are responsible for serving citizens (as opposed to clients or customers) by helping them articulate their shared interests, building a collective notion of the public good and a sense of shared responsibility. Cumulative Effects Management functions that require the alignment of efforts across jurisdictions (vertically between scales and horizontally between sectors) are examples of functions where this new management model applies.

Client: City of Victoria

Summer Festival Programming

Services: Program Evaluation, Funding Recommendations (2006)
Susan Abells worked with the Cultural Services Division and Global Arts Inc. and to evaluated nine years of summer festival programming in Victoria's Centennial Square and provided recommendations regarding future direction and funding. Research included interviews with stakeholders from the arts and cultural community, meetings with city employees and councillors, and the design, implementation and evaluation of two questionnaires developed for local businesses and residents.

Client: Parkland Institute
Services: Policy Research and Analysis (2004)
Susan Abells researched and co-wrote Quality Health Care in Alberta, a policy report analyzing the financing of health care in Alberta and Canada. She examined public opinion concerning health care, as well as issues related to tax cuts, primary health care reform and pharmacare.

Client: Government of Alberta, Capital Health Authority

New Bylaw for Smoking in Public Places

Services: Advocacy (2000 to 2004)
Susan Abells and Michael Henry worked with the Population Health Division to identify and promote public health initiatives. Worked with Capital Health, the Alberta Lung Association, Action on Smoking and Health, Edmonton Public Schools, restaurant owners and shopping malls to implemented a public awareness campaign to change the municipal smoking by-law to restrict smoking in public places in the City of Edmonton. A complete ban on smoking in all public places, including bars and gaming establishments, was implemented on June 30, 2005.

Client: Community-Based Immigrant Mental Health Project

Mental Health Services Policy and Systems Audit

Services: Policy Research and Development, Communications (2002 to 2003)
Susan Abells and Michael Henry worked with Edmonton mental health agencies to develop a Mental Health Services Policy and Systems Audit. For use by boards and management, the purpose of this cultural sensitivity self-assessment tool is to identify barriers to accessible, effective, culturally sensitive mental health-related supports and services for newcomers, and to identify and develop appropriate strategies and action plans to remove or diminish barriers.

Client: Government of Alberta, Alberta Environment

Northern East Slopes Sustainable Resource Management Strategy

Services: Stakeholder Relations, Communications, Policy Analysis and Research (2000 to 2003)
Susan Abells and Michael Henry worked with the Integrated Resource Management Division of Alberta Environment to design and conduct a series of public consultations over three years, identifying the vision, values and issues underlying a sustainable resource and environmental management strategy that introduced the concept of a cumulative effects management system. Public and stakeholder meetings were managed and facilitated with industry (forestry, energy, mining, tourism and agriculture), recreational users, environmental organizations, communities, Aboriginal Peoples and all levels of government. An academic literature review of social indicators used in the field of sustainable development was developed (2001), social indicators for the study area were identified, and base-line data collected, analyzed and presented to support the social dimension of the project’s cumulative effects management model.

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