The Division of Social Accountability (University of Saskatchewan – College of Medicine) hosts a series of community conversations, bringing together community and campus partners to explore emerging and pressing health equity issues in our communities and provide an opportunity to share experiences, questions and emerging and promising practices for both short-term and long-term change.

Join an upcoming conversation or check out our latest recordings.

Upcoming Webinars

Stay tuned for upcoming webinars!


For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

Past Webinars & Recordings

May 26 2023

Reproductive Justice

Division of Social Accountability Health Equity Webinar Series May 26 th 1230-130pm

Panelist: Delilah Kamuhanda

Sexual and reproductive health has a long history of oppression and discrimination towards people of color. High quality health interventions must be aware of, and responsive to this history in order to be effective. In this presentation you’ll learn about the history of medical racism, sexual and reproductive health, discuss contemporary concerns, and help imagine a future that is free from medical marginalization.

Delilah is a Ugandan-American, born and raised in Piscataway Territory which is now known as Maryland and Washington DC. They have a BA&Sc in Health Studies and a minor in Psychology from the University of Saskatchewan. Their experiences in and outside of academia led them to pursue a career in health education. She’s worked on projects for environmental health and its impact on maternal and infant health, as well as the impacts of racism on health. She is the Education & Outreach Coordinator at Saskatoon Sexual Health. Her approach to sexual health is sex-positive, queer-inclusive, and anti-oppressive. When they are not talking about sex ed, they’re an anti-rocist educator, the founder of Black Lives Matter YXE and a radio co-host. Delilah lives and works in Treaty 6 Territory.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

April 20 2023

Indigenous Health

Division of Social Accountability Health Equity Webinar Series April 20th 1230-130pm

Panelist: Dr. Janet Tootoosis, Vice-Dean Indigenous Health

In Canadian society our approach to health and wellness has historically centred Western or Eurocentric worldviews, which have traditionally been focused on illness and disease. In an effort to understand health as a more holistic experience, the World Health Organization has defined health as “a state of complete, physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. This shift in focus from illness to wellness is central to many non-Western worldviews, and is prominent in Indigenous approaches to health across Canada. While these approaches may differ from one nation to the next, they all share a common earth-centred worldview, deep understanding of interconnection, and a relationship with the land. As our understanding of health and wellness expands, these approaches provide the wisdom and connectedness that contemporary medicine is beginning to embrace. Join us on April 20th to learn more about Indigenous Health from Dr. Janet Tootoosis, Vice-Dean of Indigenous Health.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

March 24 2023

Gender & Health

Division of Social Accountability Health Equity Webinar Series March 24 1230-130pm

On March 8th of every year we recognize International Women’s Day. This global celebration is an opportunity to celebrate women, but also an opportunity to reflect on the impact of gender for those who are marginalized by it. In the pursuit of health equity, gender is a critical influence that impacts not only individual but also community health. Did you know that across more than 770 different diseases women are diagnosed on average 2.5 later than men? These disparities have adverse impacts on the lives of millions and will require novel approaches and innovative solutions to be addressed. The Royal University Hospital Foundation’s Women Leading Philanthropy Program is one program leading the way in pursuit of health equity. Join us on March 24th to hear from Dr. Mary Kinloch, co-founder of Women Leading Philanthropy.

Panelist: Dr. Mary Kinloch from Women Leading Philanthropy

Dr. Kinloch is a practicing pathologist in gynecologic and molecular pathology for the Saskatchewan Health Authority on Treaty 6 territory. She is the division head of Anatomic Pathology in Saskatoon and a clinical associate professor at the University of Saskatchewan in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.

Dr. Kinloch’s main goal is to provide cancer biomarker equity to the province of Saskatchewan and uses her experience in quality improvement to ensure everyone has access to the most up-to-date information when it comes to their health.

Her work with Women Leading Philanthropy with the Royal University Hospital Foundation as a volunteer chair has raised over $600,000 for female-led projects that have transformed the patient experience at RUH.

Register Here

Stay tuned for more info!

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

February 17 2023

Cultivating Community for Black Physician’s in Canada

Division of Social Accountability Health Equity Webinar Series February 17 1230-130pm

Dr. Hadal El-Hadi from Black Physicians of Canada

Dr. Hadal El-Hadi is a resident of University of British Columbia’s Public Health and Preventative Medicine Residency Program. She is a graduate from the College of Medicine, receiving her MD from the University of Saskatchewan in 2015. Hadal strongly believes in the importance of educating and motivating people into taking notice of injustices and working as a team to improve the lives of those around us. One of the biggest reasons she pursued medicine as a career was because she wanted to be part of a collective that helps children and adults in Canada and globally have a fighting chance to be happy. She recognizes, that given the history and nature of anti-Black racism in Canada and around the world, eradication would be very difficult to achieve. She is also a founder of Black Physicians of Canada. Her hopes for this organization is to have the best interest of Black Canadians at heart and as a fundamental priority create changes to the current system where she can and provide safety nets where she can’t.

In the summer of 2020, the world watched as the Black Lives Matter movement gained momentum following the murder of George Floyd. The impacts of systemic racism began to permeate conversations from the classroom, to the clinic, to the kitchen table. Collective calls for action began to swell, spurring on a historic conversation about anti-Black racism. Dr. Hadal El-Hadi is an alumna of the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Medicine and the co-founder of Black Physician’s of Canada. Join us on February 17th as we learn more about Black Physician’s of Canada and how they are building community for Black physician’s and answering calls for a more just and equitable future.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

January 27 2023

Rural and Remote Health:
Community Engagement Towards a Fit-for-Purpose Rural Workforce

Division of Social Accountability Health Equity Webinar Series January 27th 12:30pm-1:30pm


Dr. Sarah Strasser – Emeritus Professor of Rural Health University of Waikato, New Zealand

Dr. Roger Strasser – Emeritus Professor of Rural Health University of Waikato, New Zealand Founding Dean Emeritus Northern Ontario School of Medicine

This month the Division of Social Accountability directs its attention to rural and remote health. In April of 2022, the DSA office spent time in consultation with community partners and heard that the lack of services in rural and remote areas continues to have an adverse impact on their services and on the lives of the people they serve. In our province, where half of our population lives outside of large urban centre, the impacts of these health inequities continues to grow. How do we train physicians that can contribute to policy decisions that advance health equity in our province? The DSA believes that it is through genuine engagement with community stakeholders and advocates, and leveraging the concerns of faculty, students, and staff that we can respond to the complex challenges of being a socially accountable organization in a province with rapidly changing needs.  Join us for our Health Equity Webinar Series on January 27th where we hear from Dr. Sarah Strasser, Emeritus Professor of Rural Health University of Waikato, New Zealand and Dr. Roger Strasser, Emeritus Professor of Rural Health University of Waikato, New Zealand and Founding Dean Emeritus Northern Ontario School of Medicine where they will share their extensive experience using community engagement to build a fit-for-purpose rural workforce.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

Join us for our October webinar!

Disability Advocacy in Healthcare Decision Making

Over the last few years, people and systems have demonstrated innovation and adaptability as we have learned to grapple with a rapidly changing world. Self-advocates at Inclusion Saskatchewan saw a need for resources to help people with disabilities in their interactions with the healthcare system. The Medical Decision Making series provides individuals and their supporters the tools they need to make Supported Health Care decisions. Join Jamie and Shandrea as the share more about these resources and how they can be used to support individuals with disabilities in a healthcare setting.


Jamie Ellis

Shandrea Verboom

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

September 23rd 2022 1230PM

Taking Responsibility for Reconciliation

September 30th is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. Ahead of this important date, The Division of Social Accountability will centre our monthly health equity conversation around reconciliation, and more specifically individual responsibilities and actions. This month our webinar features a panel of three USASK community members who have made active contributions towards reconciliation. Join us as we discuss lessons learned, and ways we can all contribute to this critical work. Panelists Lynette Epp, Dr. Gary Groot, Sharissa Hantke

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

June 17 2022 1230PM

Queer Perspectives in Health Care

The Division of Social Accountability & OUTSaskatoon present Queer Perspectives in Healthcare with panelists Dr. Stéphanie Madill – USASK School of Rehab Science, Jemma Martens – Peer Navigator OUT Saskatoon & Jordy Ironstar – Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network (CAAN).

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

May 20 2022

The Time is Now: Harm Reduction Community Driven Initiatives 

Watch our Health Equity Webinar where we  heard from community initiatives for housing from Prairie Harm Reduction, the Blank Book Project by chokecherry youth, and the advocacy of our Students for Harm Reduction and Informed Policy.

Download Chokecherry’s Youth Blank Book Project:

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

April 29 2022

Reaching for Health Equity: Immigrant and refugee health

Join our panelists from the Refugee Engagement and Community Health (REACH) Clinic and USASK College of Medicine to discuss immigrant and refugee health here in Saskatchewan. Everyone is welcome!

Dr. Karen Leis – REACH Physician
Dr. Jacelyn Hanson – REACH Physician
Adrian Teare – USASK Medical Student
Rosario Hernandez Barba – USASK Medical Student

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

March 25th 2022

We Are Not There Yet: Persisting Gender-Based Inequities in Medicine

Want to learn more about the intersections of gender and health equity? Join medical students from GEM (Gender Equity in Medicine student group) and members of SASS (Sexual Assault Services of Saskatchewan) for a discussion about gender-based inequities in healthcare.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

February 18th 2022

Anti-Black Racism Experiences in Health Care

Natalya Mason (OUT Saskatoon, Sexual Health Clinic)
Eunice Abudu (Faculty, SaskPoly)
Jacob Alhassan (Faculty, U of S)
Edith Conacher (Student Affairs CoM, U of S)

This panel will discuss experiences of anti-Black racism in healthcare from the perspective of practitioners, students, teachers, patients, connecting how the level of interpersonal racism (individual experiences) is connected to the systemic level (long standing collective anti-Black narratives, sentiment, and policy in SK), and paying attention to how tthe intersectionality of Black identities shapes those experiences of interacting with systems of white supremacy.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

January 24th 2021

Health in a changing climate, and the role of healthcare professionals in the climate crisis.

Medical students Sehjal Bhargava, Nathan Fortin, Brooklyn Rawlyk and Vancouver family physician Dr. Melissa Lem discuss climate change, it’s intersectional impacts on health, how to cope with its effects as healthcare professionals, and the role they play in fighting the climate crisis.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

December 10th 2021

A National Human Rights Day Discussion About Access To Public Washrooms

In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly declared sanitation a universal human right. This means everyone, without discrimination is entitled to “have physical and affordable access to sanitation, in all spheres of life, that is safe, hygienic, secure, and social and culturally acceptable, and that provides privacy and dignity”.  Everyone, everywhere, has the right to a toilet. Our governments should be accountable to ensure this basic need of having a place to relieve oneself is available to the public.

During the beginning of the COVID response, Saskatoon went more than 100 days without access to public washrooms. This impacted everyone who relies on access to publicly accessible washrooms including City of Saskatoon transit drivers, delivery drivers, utility workers, gas and electric service workers, people doing street repair, local pedestrians, citizens young and old; and people who use park systems are all users of public washrooms. It is especially critical for seniors, pregnant women, little children, those with some medical conditions, and those who are homeless.

As a result of this lesson – the Saskatoon Interagency Response to COVID escalated a conversation with the City of Saskatoon and the Saskatoon Public Washroom Advisory Committee was formed. For more info about the committee: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1NBGMJqGlW0Yf0goAcrT7HqoEB_Zjc5j1/view?usp=sharing

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

November 5th 2021

SPRP 12 Bold Ideas to Eliminate Poverty: Lessons Learned during the COVID-19 Pandemic with Colleen Christopherson-Cote

How do we learn from the COVID-19 pandemic and create public policies that address the root causes of poverty and inequity?

How can we learn from this crisis and show Saskatchewan that poverty is an urgent public health crisis?

This Health Equity Webinar features Colleen Christopherson-Cote from the Saskatoon Poverty Reduction Partnership (SPRP) discussing the updated report, “12 Bold Ideas to Eliminate Poverty: Lessons Learned during the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

October 1st 2021

Defending our Reprodcutive Rights: A Discussion with Saskatoon Sexual Health

Dr. Rachel Gough and Saskatoon Sexual Health Representatives Heather Hale, Executive Director and Lauren Tastad, Nurse Practitioner discuss defending reproductive rights in Saskatchewan

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

June 4th 2021

Minding the Good Doctor: The Legal Elements of Consent with Alisa Lombard.

The genocide of Indigenous peoples in Canada is not a relic of history, but is alive and active in our policies, practices, and systems to this day. Acknowledging the harm, while refusing to hold these systems accountable perpetuates racist and oppressive practices that continue to reproduce trauma in people accessing services. Today, we will participate in a conversation with Alisa Lombard B.S.Sc., LL.L., L.L.B. (JD) LL.M. (Candidate, 2021), about holding the medical system accountable, pertaining specifically to the legal elements of consent and acting as council for Indigenous Saskatchewan women who were forcefully sterilized.  As a community, we need to move from acknowledgment to accountability and action to dismantle harmful practices and systems.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

March 5th 2021 1230PM

Health & Equity: Patterns of White Dominance in Health Care with Sharissa Hantke

Join Sharissa as she presents her research findings identifying how whiteness gets performed in a health education context. This session will take an antiracism/anti-oppression approach to accountability in our health care and health education systems. For white people to do better, we need to learn how our words and actions contribute to systemic racism and harm BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour).

About the presenter:
Sharissa Hantke, RN (she/her) Sharissa is a white settler community health clinical nursing instructor working on a master’s in educational foundations at the University of Saskatchewan under the supervision of antiracism expert Dr. Verna St. Denis. Sharissa seeks to work for racial justice by learning her own complicity in colonialism and her responsibility to push for a critical antiracist lens in nursing education.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

February 5th 2021 1230PM

Health & Equity: Making Systems Accountable with Erin Beckwell

Addressing the social determinants of health (SDoH) and health equity at a population level is complex and extends far beyond individual practitioner skills and knowledge, yet individual-level activities (like education and training) are frequently the focus of large system “equity responses”. This session will explore how health, social service, education, justice, and other systems can deepen and broaden their approach to – and ultimately be held accountable for – achieving health equity.

About the presenter:
Erin Beckwell BSW MSW RSW
Erin is a social worker whose work has been in the areas of health, education, and community development. Erin’s most recent work has focused on mobilizing knowledge to support equity-informed, culturally responsive, and trauma-informed approaches to practice, and to reposition these approaches as broader systemlevel priorities.
Originally from Treaty 4 Territory in Southwest Saskatchewan, she and her wife have called Treaty 6 Territory and Homeland of the Métis (Saskatoon, SK) home for over 20 years.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

November 20th 2020

Systemic Racism, Equity and Health Education: What is the role of the DSA?

A recent awareness of systemic racism in the Canadian health care system has emerged in the public conversation. However, evidence of systematic discrimination and biases, as well as of persistent patterns of inequities in health are abundant and long-standing in our province. How is medical education implicated in the reproduction of these health outcomes? How can the DSA foster conversations about racism in Health education using a framework of equity that establishes measurable outcomes as well as timely mechanisms for accountability? What are the challenges of addressing racial equity in health education?

A conversation with Dr. Manuela Valle Castro, Director of the DSA.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

October 30th 2020

Community Conversations:
The Digital Divide and Access to Technology in the time of COVID-19

A conversation about barriers created by the digital divide during the COVID-19 community closures, and ideas for supporting vulnerable individuals and families access digital information. Amanda Lepage, Senior Manager of Welcoming Initiatives at Saskatoon Public Library, shares initiatives developed by the SPL team and explain how the public library can be a community partner in connecting people to the digital information they need.

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

October 16 12 – 1PM

International Day for the Elimination of Poverty: Understanding the Poverty Line & Market Basket Measure

Each year, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty falls on October 17. Declared by the United Nations in 1992, this date provides a shared moment each year – across Saskatchewan, Canada and around the world  to:

  1. Commemorate victims of poverty, violence and hunger
  2. Reaffirm that poverty is a violation of human rights
  3. Re-commit to coming together to ensure the right to live free from poverty is respected
  4. Acknowledge the effort and struggle of people living in poverty
  5. Celebrate the willingness of people living in poverty to fight poverty and contribute their expertise to ending it
  6. Promote concrete activities around the eradication of poverty
  7. Organize activities for the observance of October 17th.

Source: United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs – Poverty

On October 16th 2020, we marked this important day through our Community Conversation on Poverty series. Let’s get talking about poverty in our city and in our province.

#EndPovertyYXE #EndPoverty #povertyreduction #poverty

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

October 9 1230 – 130PM

COVID-19 In the Context of World Homelessness Day: A closer look at what COVID-19 has taught us about the Homelessness Action Plan.

On October 9th, World Homelessness Day, the Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) joined us to discuss issues of housing insecurity and homelessness and what COVID-19 taught us about the Homelessness Action Plan.

For more information about the Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnerships

Read the Saskatoon Homelessness Action Plan

For more information or questions, email: social.accountability@usask.ca

October 2 1230 – 130PM

Community Conversations on Poverty

Throughout the fall the Division of Social Accountability (DSA) will co-host along with the Saskatoon Poverty Reduction Partnership (SPRP) a Friday webinar series to discuss lessons learned during COVID – how these intersect with 12 Bold Ideas to Eliminate Poverty, and how to move forward. These online conversations will explore topics such as housing and homelessness, understanding the poverty line and market basket measure, the impacts of CERB and income assistance, racism and criminalization of poverty, youth poverty, the digital divide and access to technology, and more. Sessions will be held on Fridays from 12:30pm-1:30pm.

Join us October 2nd at 12:30pm for the series launch of Community Conversations on Poverty: Lessons Learned during COVIDFor more information or to register for the series launch.

June 12, 12PM

Food Insecurity in Saskatoon During a Pandemic: Community Responses and Reflections for Long-Term Systemic Change


  • Dr. Rachel Engler-Stringer, Associate Professor in Community Health and Epidemiology
  • Laurie O’Connor, Executive Director  Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre
  • Jean Goerzen, Interim Executive Director, CHEP Good Food Inc.
  • Chelsea Belt, Public Health Nutritionist, Saskatchewan Health Authority/Saskatoon Inter-Agency Response to COVID-19

Join us in a conversation to discuss community responses during the pandemic and thinking forward to how we can learn from this unprecedented time to address food insecurity in our community.

June 5, 12PM

Harm Reduction & COVID-19

Join Kayla DeMong and Barb Fornssler to discuss the need for harm reduction based supports in our community. With the recent increase in overdoses, closure of many organizations and barriers in supporting our homeless population we need to continue to look at how programs can adapt to ensure people in our community have the supports to be safe.

May 29, 12PM

COVID-19, gender-based violence and health equity: Responding to the needs of individuals experiencing intimate violence in the context of a pandemic.

The challenges related to the everyday lived experiences of intimate partner violence are magnified during times of crisis such as the pandemic we are facing today. In this talk, we provide background on intimate partner violence in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic in order to engage participants in a discussion of how we, as caring members of our community, can work together to offer trauma-informed approaches when responding to the health needs of those at risk of gender-based violence.

April 24, 12PM

Equity-Informed Responses to COVID-19: A Saskatoon Perspective

What does equity look like in our response to COVID-19?

Join the Division of Social Accountability for an online Health Equity: Community Conversation this Friday April 24th from 12:00-1:00pm with Dr. Lori Hanson, Associate Professor, Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, Director of the Division of Social Accountability, College of Medicine and Colleen Christopherson-Cote of the Saskatoon Inter-Agency Response to COVID-19.

Discover how the Saskatoon community is putting equity at the heart of action and responding to the needs of people who are especially vulnerable to the negative impacts of COVID-19 pandemic due to entrenched housing and food insecurity.