New Brunswick

Speech-Language & Audiology Canada (SAC) is a member-driven organization

As a professional association, we function in an environment comprised of multi-stakeholders and partners. We work closely with provincial and territorial associations and regulators.

The role of the regulator is very different than that of an association, predominantly regulators exist to protect the public while associations support, promote, and elevate the professions. Here is a chart that should serve as a helpful guide to demonstrate the distinction between your Regulatory College and your Professional Association.

 

College (NBASLPA)

Professional Association (SAC)

Mandate

Acts in the interest of the public

Acts in the interest of the professions/members

Role

They regulate the professions of speech- language pathology and audiology and license professional S-LPs and audiologists in the province.

Advocates on behalf of the professions they represent

Governance

Governed through

provincial legislation.

Not-for-profit organization not governed through legislative authority.

Membership

Compulsory to practice

the profession.

Voluntary

Benefits

Establish, monitor, and enforce:

  • Code of Ethics Bylaws (in accordance with legislation)
  • Public complaint and registrant discipline processes
  • Entry to Practice standards
  • Continuing Competency and Quality Assurance Programs
  • Licenses to practice Continuing Education Program
  • Currency Hours
  • Accountability to government
  • Raises the profile and reputation of the professions with policy-makers, key stakeholders, and government officials through federal and provincial advocacy
  • Membership provides a unified and powerful voice with influence on a national level
  • Offers professional development opportunities through the development, coordination, and delivery of continuing education – such as conferences, webinars, and workshops
  • Develops and curates’ exclusive professional tools and practice resources such as information sheets, position papers, and professional toolkits

 

  • Practice Standards and guidelines
  • Protection of Title
  • Greater autonomy and control
  • Access to government to negotiate for more authority
  • Supports personal and professional growth through programs such as Mentorship, Scholarship, and our nationally recognized Certification that enhance skills and establish credibility in the industry
  • Facilitates networking opportunities through virtual and in-person events, committee involvement, or special interest groups
  • Strengthens evidence-informed practice through research grants and access to research journals and databases such as CINAHL, Cochrane and CJSLPA
  • Supports career ads and student placements
  • Offers exclusive benefits and discounts such as professional liability, home, and auto insurance
  • Keeps members abreast of industry news and the latest advancements in the field through member communications, such as monthly newsletters and “This Week in the News– a weekly round-up of the latest stories related to the profession
  • A team of staff to support you and answer questions through our National Office

Intersection

The professional association works collaboratively with the provincial regulators where combined efforts best serve the profession.

Members have shared with us that advocacy is one of their top priorities. This is something that regulators cannot do. As the Association representing the professions of speech-language pathology, audiology, and communication health assistants, one of our top priorities is federal advocacy.

But we also know that education and healthcare are delivered provincially. In the face of job cuts, funding issues, and other emerging healthcare and education issues, it has become more relevant than ever for SAC to become involved in provincial advocacy.

In the Spring of 2022, we implemented a new model of support in some provinces (Alberta and Saskatchewan) that have undergone similar changes as New Brunswick. In these provinces, SAC members pay a small additional fee to allow for the provision of dedicated advocacy staffing services. Many other regulated health professions have similar models that have been borne out of collaboration rather than competition, and with the knowledge that members have the support of the national association for all other programs and services, coupled with extra support to ensure in-province representation with government and local and municipal leaders in healthcare, school boards, and other related areas.

This model has been contemplated in New Brunswick, however with the recent significant increase in College fees we do not feel the timing is right to impose any additional fees to members. Instead, we want to highlight the benefits of our current membership to the majority of New Brunswick members and once the current renewal cycle has ended, we will engage members in the province via a member referendum to allow members to vote for any changes themselves.

We have developed an FAQ below to help you navigate these changes. Most importantly, it is critical that you renew your membership with SAC so that we can continue to provide the programs and services you have come to expect from us and so that we can collaborate on future advocacy support if members are in favour.

Frequently Asked Questions​

Anyone is invited to join SAC, and SAC welcomes any current NBASLPA members to join us

SAC membership fees are found here. Full members are $350 annually. Take advantage of the Early Bird Rates in November. Students are FREE!

SAC has a wealth of programs and services to support you. Highlights include: exclusive access to online Professional Development in the form of live webinars and hundreds of recorded webcasts through our webcast library; exclusive access to journals, a comprehensive competitively priced PLI program through our partner BMS, and we support you in advocacy through our Federal advocacy work and our voice on powerful national coalitions such as HEAL and EHPC. SAC also offers a certification program, discount programs, scholarships, clinical research grants, and numerous professional resources.

SAC actively engages members in our work for development of resources, conferences, and other activities through regular calls for volunteers, and we also have an active education committee to help support our ongoing professional development needs for members. We welcome input into these committees. We also have several active working groups and ad-hoc committees focused on developing resources in areas such as private practice, tinnitus, literacy, long covid and Team Primary Care of which SAC is a partner.

As a National Association, SAC has a mandate to develop resources in both official languages. We have bilingual membership staff to serve your needs.

SAC’s federal advocacy is led by our Manager of Government Relations and Advocacy. This position was created in 2021 and has focused on advocating for our professions at the federal level and working towards aligning our federal and provincial advocacy work. Through this position, SAC has secured two federal standing committee of health appearances, as well as participated in consultations informing the development of new National standards for long term care, Canada Student Loan Forgiveness, and Aging at home consultations. SAC has ongoing communications and meetings with all levels of decision makers including but not limited to the Minister of Health, Minister of Seniors, and Minister of Children offices.

In addition to leading the federal work, the Manager of Government Relations and Advocacy supports the advocacy staff in Saskatchewan and Alberta. We also have advocacy staff in Ontario as a result of our 2022 merger with the former Ontario Association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists (OSLA).

Our advocacy teams work on collaborative efforts such as initiatives related to health human resources data, retention and recruitment, and long-term care. Our staff are supported by clinicians on staff in the form of a Director of Audiology and Director of Speech-Language Pathology. Our advocacy team is a vital part of the work that we do and is gaining momentum as time goes on.

We are hopeful that we will have a full renewal commitment from our existing SAC members in New Brunswick and some growth from existing NBASLPA members who were not previously members of SAC. If we have this support of the members we can engage the full complement of NB members in a referendum to ask for their feedback on adding an advocacy position for the province. Given the rise in College fees, we do not feel it is prudent to move forward with this until we have completed our upcoming renewal cycle in January 2024, and can engage the members in this process.

Professional Liability insurance (PLI) protects you against liability or allegations of liability for injury or damages that have resulted from a negligent act, error, omission, or malpractice that has arisen out of your professional capacity as a Speech-language Pathologist, Audiologist, or Communication Health Assistant. Your policy also responds if a complaint is made against you to your regulatory body.

Yes, we have the most comprehensive, competitive program available. You can find out all about the program by clicking here.

SAC members and associates can purchase $5 million in professional liability insurance for only $53 per year through our partnership with BMS. BMS has expanded their offerings to include $2 million in coverage for only $48 per year. This coverage can cost up to $700 a year for non-SAC members and associates!

No, you don’t, however as a SAC member you get a powerful and unified voice. We also have a wealth of programs to support you through all stages of your career – just as NBASLPA has been there, SAC will be there as well.

Timelines would begin in January 2024 once we have a better sense of how many members we have in New Brunswick. We are concerned about the increases in your College fees and recognize that this is a financial strain for many of you but we still fully believe it is more important than ever to support your National Association. We are a small profession and our collective voice is needed on issues such as health human resources, scope of practice, and national licensure. There has never been a more critical time to support SAC so that we can represent you inclusively.

No additional fees will be added to your 2024 membership dues. NBASLPA has committed to paying the first year of advocacy fees for all current SAC members who are also NBASLPA members. This means for current SAC members your SAC dues will stay the same for 2024. New member who wish to join will pay the SAC membership dues.

The current fee is a small annual amount of $75 per person which is used to directly offset staff time.

Contact SAC

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