Call for Volunteers: 2024 Speech-Language Pathology Conference Working Group

The primary objective of the 2024 Speech-Language & Audiology Canada Conference Working Group and Sub-Working Groups is to work with Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC) to develop the education program and all other events and activities associated with the 2024 national speech-language pathology conference.

All members must be SAC members or associates during their term on the Working Group or Sub-Working Groups.

Please note: the working language of this working group is English.

For a full description of the working group’s mandate, please see the terms of reference.

Tune into CBC Radio in Your City to Hear Julia Kennedy, (SAC Director of Audiology) or Jerri-Lee McKay (Audiologist, former SAC Board Chair) Discuss OTC Hearing Aids

Some recent changes to regulations around OTC hearing aids in the US has created some buzz in Canada.

At SAC, we feel this topic is timely and deserves attention. We feel strongly that any coverage on the subject should be based on information sourced from experts in the field.

Audiologists are the leaders in hearing health, which may or may not include OTC hearing aids. SAC advocates for equitable access to hearing health care that is individualized, safe, and effective. This requires the expertise audiologists provide at the highest level of training and quality of care.

CBC Canada approached SAC for our feedback on this important topic. This afternoon (October 21st) tune into CBC Radio in your city to hear Julia Kennedy, (SAC Director of Audiology) or Jerri-Lee McKay (Audiologist, former SAC Board Chair) discuss OTC Hearing Aids and what this could mean for Canada.




Vanessa Vander Valk – Host
Twitter: @ShiftNB



HALIFAX – Mainstreet
Jeff Douglas – Host
Twitter(show): @Mainstreethfx (Halifax Mainstreet)



Matt Rainnie – Host/Producer
Twitter show/host: @mattrainniecbc


EDMONTON – Radio Active
HOST: Jessica Ng



CALGARY — Homestretch
Host – tba
Twitter: @CBCHomestretch



Wendy Bergfeldt – Host/Producer
Twitter: @Mainstreet_CB



Dave White – Host
Twitter: @yukonradiodave


YELLOWKNIFE – Trail’s End – Host Lawrence Nayally
Twitter: @lawrence316


WINNIPEG – Up to Speed
Host – Faith Fundal



SASKATCHEWAN – Afternoon Edition
Garth Materie – Host
Twitter: @afternoonCBC


LONDON/WINDSOR – Afternoon Drive
Host: various



KELOWNA – Radio West
Host: Sarah Penton
Twitter show: @cbcradiowest



VANCOUVER – On the Coast
Gloria Macarenko – Host
Twitter: @CBCOnTheCoast



QUEBEC CITY – Breakaway
Host: Alison Brunette
Twitter: @cbcbreakaway



TORONTO – Here and Now
Gill Deacon – Host
Twitter: @CBCHereandNow



Dave White – Host
Twitter: @yukonradiodave



VICTORIA – All Points West
Host – Kathryn Marlow or Rohit Joseph
Twitter: @allpointswestbc

Kathleen Pichora-Fuller elected into the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences

SAC would like to congratulate SAC member M. Kathleen Pichora-Fuller on her election as a fellow for the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. In 2021 Kathleen Pichora-Fuller was the recipient of SAC’s Eve Kassirer Award for Lifetime Achievement. She was chosen for this award in recognition to her long history of distinguished and dedicated service to both SAC and the profession of  audiology. Her work has fostered the development and advancement of audiology nationally and internationally. She is also currently the Chair of SAC’s Audiology Services in Long Term Care Working Group.

She is also joined by SAC member Susan Rvachew, who has received national and international recognition for outstanding professional achievements in the field of speech-language pathology practice and research.

Fellowship in the Academy is considered one of the highest honours for individuals in the Canadian health sciences community. This announcement has important implications for audiology and SAC because it provides an opportunity to lead new initiatives on various policy deliberations concerning hearing in later life, including the national dementia strategy, ageism, new models of inter-professional primary health care delivery, LTC, etc.

The Canadian Academy of Health Sciences brings together Canada’s top-ranked health and biomedical scientists and scholars to make a positive impact on the urgent health concerns of Canadians. The fellows have been drawn from all disciplines across our nation’s universities, healthcare and research institutes, evaluate Canada’s most complex health challenges and recommend strategic, actionable solutions.


Click here to learn more and see the full list of 2022 fellows.

March of Dimes Canada Tech for Impact Fund and Webinar about Unlocking Accessibility on Your Smart Devices (IOS)

Credit: March of Dimes Canada

Tech for Impact Fund

March of Dimes Canada’s Tech for Impact Fund is providing $50,000 towards purchasing and delivering mobile devices, laptops, and adaptive aids that support the independent use of accessible technology.

Eligible participants who enter our draw by October 28, 2022 will have a chance to win.

To learn more, click here


Webinar: Unlocking accessibility on your smart devices (IOS)

This webinar covers accessibility features on iPads and iPhones for vision, hearing, physical access and memory/cognition categories. Delivered by our team of assistive technology specialists at March of Dimes Canada.

To view the webinar, click here


Survey: Assessing Dysphagia Readiness in Recent S-LP Graduates

The Aging Swallow Research Lab and the Oral Health and Swallowing Research Lab are seeking speech-language pathologists who currently work with adults in Canada, to participate in a student research project titled “A Survey to Determine Readiness for Clinical Management of Adults with Dysphagia After Completing Graduate School in Canada Among Speech-Language Pathologists.” This survey is being conducted by undergraduate student Christine Lee, under the supervision of Dr. Ashwini Namasivayam-MacDonald from McMaster University, Dr. Rebecca Affoo and Juliana McLaren from Dalhousie University and Zuleikha Wadhwaniya from University Health Network.

The purpose of this study is to determine the readiness and competency of Canadian speech-language pathology students in clinically managing dysphagia, immediately following their graduation. We aim to recruit currently practicing speech-language pathologists, who have graduated from a Canadian program within the last 5 years (Classes of 2018-2022). We are not collecting any identifying information and only aggregate-level data (i.e., data that summarizes the results) will be made public.

The survey will take approximately 10-15 minutes to complete. Please note, there will be no financial benefits associated with the completion of the survey.
If interested, please click here

If you have any questions about this study, please do not hesitate to contact Christine Lee via email at
Note that this study has been reviewed by the Hamilton Integrated Research Ethics Board (HiREB) under Project #15267. The HiREB is responsible for ensuring that participants are informed of the risks associated with the research, and that participants are free to decide if participation is right for them. If you have any questions about the rights of research participants, please call the Office of the Chair, HiREB, at 905.521.2100 x 42013.


SAC and Extended HealthCare Professionals Statement for Parliamentarians

As part of the return to Parliament, SAC alongside our coalition of Extended HealthCare Professionals released the following statement for Parliamentarians :

As Members of Parliament return to Ottawa for the House of Commons fall session, the Extended Healthcare Professionals Coalition (EHPC) looks forward to collaborating with federal leaders and policy makers to address some of the most pressing healthcare issues facing Canadians. 

First and foremost on the agenda: Canada is in the middle of a healthcare human resource crisis. While much attention has been paid to hospital closures and access to primary health care, the issue is much broader and affects all parts of the healthcare delivery system, across the public and private sectors. EHPC members are committed to providing innovative solutions to address longstanding systemic pressures noting that current system challenges extend beyond physicians and nurses.
“The EHPC represents over 100,000 of Canada’s regulated healthcare professionals who are grappling with these challenges and have a crucial role to play in terms of identifying and implementing solutions,” said Ondina Love, Chair of the EHPC. The EHPC looks forward to working with key federal decision makers in the coming weeks and months to improve timely access to care and overall system performance for all Canadians.”
The four key recommendations which EHPC will be advancing this Fall are:
Address the health human resources crisis by investing in short and long-term retention and recruitment strategies for all healthcare practitioners. This includes expanding the Canada Student Loan Forgiveness Program, supporting provincial and territorial recruitment strategies, and expanded funding for educational institutions.

  • Ensure the long-term resiliency of the healthcare sector by improving the collection of workforce data to identify and understand labour trends and challenges within and across the public and private sectors.
  • Reduce the reliance on in-hospital care by improving access to preventative and early intervention interdisciplinary community-based primary care that includes the services provided by EHPC members such as Audiologists, Chiropractors, Dental Hygienists, Dentists, Denturists, Dietitians, Occupational Therapists, Optometrists, Pharmacists, Physiotherapists, Psychologists, Speech-Language Pathologists, and Social Workers.
  • Explore models that require Canadian employers to provide their employees with health and dental benefits to cover their health and wellness needs that are not covered by Canada’s public healthcare system.

“We encourage decision makers to broaden their understanding of Canada’s healthcare landscape and bring extended professionals into the conversation”, said Ms Love. “Addressing the many challenges facing healthcare in Canada, including the human resources crisis, will require all hands on deck, and our members offer the expertise and perspective needed to keep Canadians healthy and productive.”

DLD Awareness Day

Credit: RADLD

Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (RADLD) and Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Canada (SAC) raising awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) for international #DLDday on Friday 14 October 2022.

Developmental Language Disorder is a hidden but common disability that affects 1 in 14 people causing difficulties understanding and using language for no known reason. In Canada, there are approximately 2.6 million people with DLD. DLD is a lifelong problem and affects people of all ages.

What is language? Language is an essential element of communication. Language includes talking, understanding, reading, writing, and reasoning with words in one’s own language. Language is key to learning at school, and essential for socialization and self-esteem. Language skills are part of the foundations that make us citizens of our community. It can be challenging for people with DLD to learn, find and hold on to jobs, establish relationships, and do other day-to-day activities involving language.

The 2022 DLDday theme is Growing with DLD, highlighting that DLD is a lifelong, permanent disability. People do not grow out of DLD but with individualized supports that can include regular speech-language therapy and educational adjustments they can thrive. It’s about growing with DLD.

Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (RADLD), the lead organization who coordinates international DLDday are advocating for increased recognition and support for people with DLD across their lifespan. RADLD Canada and SAC are joining together to raise awareness of DLD in Canada.

“People with DLD are 6 times more likely to suffer from anxiety and 3 times more likely to have clinical depression. They are also at significant risk of struggling with reading, spelling and mathematics. Although DLD is a common condition affecting many areas of life, people with DLD are unlikely to receive access to services,” said Stephen Parsons, Chair of RADLD.

Join us in raising awareness of DLD. Developmental Language Disorder Day #DLDday, now in its sixth year, is celebrated annually around the world with more than 40 countries involved.

Visit for more information and resources.

For more information contact:

François Gosselin (French), DLD working in the field of awareness 

438-520-8505 (Cell phone and WhatsApp)        

Caitlin Malli (English)

Speech-Language Pathologist, R.SLP

Saskatchewan Advocacy Update August 2022

SAC Saskatchewan Members, 

We collected and analyzed the results of the survey that was distributed to you earlier this summer. These results were shared with your regional advisory committee to set immediate priorities. We are encouraged and excited to have such accomplished and exciting committee members working on your advocacy needs!


The top three advocacy issues by rank were:

  1. Advocate for increased government funding for FTE positions in Speech-language Pathology and Audiology
  2. Recruitment/retention issues
  3. Advocating for expanded coverage/reimbursement from third parties


The top three workplace issues by rank were:

  1. Caseload/workload issues (by a wide margin)
  2. Length of waitlists to access services
  3. Lack of insurance coverage for services


Actions that would have the most immediate impact by rank were:

  1. Caseload/workload issues (by a wide margin)
  2. Greater recognition by third parties/other professionals/public
  3. Increased renumeration


It should be noted that several audiology members highlighted use of the title ”Dr.” for those with earned degrees and direct referral to ENT as priority items.

Our first meeting focused on prioritizing and brainstorming both short- and long-term advocacy goals. To that end, your Advocacy Managers for Saskatchewan have worked on the following this summer:

  • Finalizing our provincial advocacy plan, focusing on key stakeholders and messaging aligning with federal priorities such as Early Learning and Child Care, Long-Term Care, and addressing backlogs caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. To that end, we have written to and are beginning to meet with MLA’s and Assistant Deputy Ministers from several Ministries.
  •  Meeting with contacts from the U of S to determine how we can work together to address issues such as professional recognition, continuing education, and recruitment and retention issues.
  • Connecting with CAA to request an update on progress with direct referral to ENT in the province of Saskatchewan. CAA is leading this initiative for Audiology in Canada. Dave Gordey reported initial contacts have been made with key stakeholders within the province and will provide periodic updates on the status of this project.

Durham College CDA Program Teaching Opportunity

Durham College is seeking an experienced and motivated professional who shares our commitment to quality and student success. The Faculty of Health Sciences requires a part-time professor to teach an Introduction to Audiology course for the Communicative Disorders Assistant program in the fall semester.

Interested candidates should send a resume to Gillian Dunn Associate Dean Faculty of Health Sciences