Policy for Advocacy

Assessment Task 2: Written report of Policy for Advocacy (No more than 2000 words)

Agency: The Australian Women’s Health Network www.awhn.org.au

Topic: Women and Mental Health

One of the most important ways of influencing policy is advocacy. Baum (2008 p.550) 

Policies for advocacy differ from public policies. Policies for advocacy are developed by associations and organisations to clearly articulate their views to their members and the community. They are a call for government action. 

As health promoters (health promotion, nurses, human services etc.) one of your roles will be to advocate for the best possible health opportunities for your community or population group, and the most effective way to do this is to recommend changes to existing public policy and/or get your issue onto the government’s policy agenda. This is done by stating your organisation’s position on the problem informed by clear and persuasive frameworks and in utilising the best available evidence to articulate the nature of the problem, as well as what action you believe government needs to take to address the issue. For a powerful example refer to Australian Conservation Foundation’s (2013) Restoring the Foundations for a Better Australia. 

Your Policy for Advocacy needs to include the following elements: 

1. Background.
(500 words)

1.1 Introduction to your organisation including values and ideologies that inform their operations.

1.2 State your health issue / problem and outline how it has been defined (for example individual versus social model of health);

1.3 Provide recent, compelling evidence for the extent and urgency of the issue and its impact for the defined population group.

2. Ideologies, values and approaches underpinning your Policy for Advocacy:
(400 words)

2.1 Identify the key principles, values, ideologies, frameworks that inform your Policy for Advocacy (eg: determinants of health, Fair Society and Health Lives ( Marmot 2010); social model of health; social justice and equity, community development principles (Ife, 2013); 

2.2 Articulate one Health Promotion framework that underpins your policy for advocacy (eg: Ottawa Charter for Health (WHO 1984); Framework for Health Promotion Action (Keleher and Murphy 2004); Integrated Health Promotion Resource Kit (DHS 2003 pp. 3‐ 4)).

3. Aims, objectives, consultation process, health promotion focus and recommendations
(1100 words)

3.1 Clearly state the aim/s and objectives of the policy for advocacy (use SMART objectives).

3.2 Identify appropriate consultation process/s for incorporating targeted community perspectives into your Policy for Advocacy.

3.3 Explain how your Policy for Advocacy can promote health of populations using your chosen health promotion framework identified in 2.2 above.

3.4 Develop recommendations / call to action for government (minimum of three). This could be done by nominating a minimum of three key general areas requiring recommendation and formulating actions for each section. As an example, refer to Southern Grampians and Glenelg PCP (2008 pp. 18‐22)

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