Public & Patient Engagement

Ethics Council Public Engagement Group

Clients and family members explore ethics-related considerations of high-level health system and policy issues.

What is the Ethics Council Public Engagement Group?

The Ethics Public Engagement Group was created in 2014 to supplement and provide the client’s voice to the Regional Ethics Council. The Council provides an ethics lens for clinical practice and policy review and development, performs ethics issue reviews, and supports ethics initiatives throughout the region. Often, the voices of our customers are missing from important decision-making processes. Without those voices, it is easy to make assumptions about the values of clients, residents, patients, and their families, assumptions that are coloured by the biases and values of the system. This group will ensure that patient and family perspectives on ethical implications of policies, practice tools and education initiatives are embedded in the work of the Council, and that all of Council’s outputs accurately represent the Winnipeg Health Region’s stakeholders.

Ethics Public Engagement Group Terms of Reference


The Ethics Public Engagement Group includes 10 to 15 members of the public from across the Region. Efforts are made to ensure citizen and client representatives reflect the diversity of clients served by the Winnipeg Health Region (from across the region, seniors, people with disabilities, etc.)   Support for the Council will be provided by WRHA Ethics Services and public engagement staff.  The Director of WRHA Ethics Services will chair the group. Preferential consideration will be given to members of the public who do not work in the healthcare system, as these perspectives are well-represented by regional, site and program ethics committees.

Group Role

The Ethics Council Public Engagement Group’s role is to contribute ideas and perspectives to the Ethics Council as it reviews policies and evidence informed practice tools, and develops strategies and ethics resources to guide ethical practice in the Region. Proceedings of the Group will be reported to the Regional Ethics Council and included as part of any feedback the Council provides to policy and guideline authors, and will inform plans for ethics initiatives within the Region. Group members are encouraged to attend the Regional Ethics Council’s monthly meetings when possible.


The Ethics Public Engagement Group will discuss the ethical implications of WRHA policies, clinical practice guidelines, and common or recurrent themes in the ethical issues reported by WRHA staff. They will also participate in and help to test and review ethics education events and activities.

Volunteer commitment

Members volunteer for 3-year terms. The Group meets between September and May. Meetings will be 1.5 to 2 hours and scheduled at a time and location that is convenient to the majority of the members.

Interested in getting involved?

All applicants are invited to apply for terms beginning in September 2016. Application deadline is May 31, 2018.

Download the application form

Applications and further questions about the WRHA Ethics Council Public Engagement Group can be directed to:

Jennifer Dunsford 
Regional Director for Ethics Services 
Phone: 204-926-7124.

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