Measuring Public Opinion in a Turbulent World @ St Jax Montréal
Mar 6 @ 7:00 pm

The surprising victory of Donald Trump in the 2016 Election in the United States, combined with the no-less surprising Brexit referendum results, have generated many negative comments regarding the accuracy of political polling and polling companies’ ability to accurately measure public mood in a rapidly changing world.

Sébastien Dallaire, Vice President at Ipsos, Canada’s leading public opinion research firm, will provide an in-depth look at the present and future of political polling, demonstrating that despite the challenges faced by the polling industry, scientific polls based on random samples remain the most accurate way of measuring public opinion and voting intentions.

Through his 20 years of experience teaching and conducting public opinion research, Sébastien Dallaire has become one of Canada’s most respected polling specialists.

In addition to his regular appearances on national and provincial media outlets as a polling analyst and commentator, he has been involved in designing, conducting and analyzing hundreds of research projects for prestigious Canadian clients in the private and public sectors.

His private sector career in political polling started during his PhD studies in Political Science at the University of Toronto, when he joined pollster Allan Gregg’s team at The Strategic Counsel.

In 2010, Mr. Dallaire moved back to his hometown of Montreal where he led the public affairs team at Léger for more than 5 years before joining Ipsos, Canada largest public opinion research firm, as Vice President in 2016.

Doctors Without Borders—Behind the Scenes of Humanitarian Action @ John Simms Community Centre
Mar 27 @ 7:00 pm

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an independent international humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency medical aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural and man-made disasters or by exclusion from health care in more than 60 countries around the world.

Every year MSF sends about 3,000 doctors, nurses, logisticians, water-and-sanitation experts, administrators and other professionals to work alongside over 25,000 locally hired staff. In 2016 this included 343 Canadians from many different professional backgrounds.

Drawing on our guest speaker’s own experiences and those of colleagues, this illustrated talk will go behind the scenes to examine how these organizations face the practical challenges of delivering aid where it is most needed.

A question period will follow.

Nick Annejohn is a Former Field Logistician with Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders).

He worked in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia and the Central African Republic where he applied his engineering background to the task of delivering humanitarian medical assistance. 

A Democratic Deliberation on Sleeping Pills – Why Sex and Gender Matter @ John Simms Community Centre
Apr 24 @ 7:00 pm

Making an informed choice is a right that everyone has prior to initiating drug therapy. In order to prevent and reduce reliance on medications, patients should be informed about the sex and gender-related factors that lead to persistent prescriptions and be made aware of non-drug approaches in managing sleep and anxiety. This presentation will explain how historical, social and medical influences have shaped the way sleeping pills have evolved as a form of chemical coping. After reviewing the evidence-based harms associated with sleeping pills, the audience will be asked to weigh in on potential policy changes that could be implemented to reduce the overuse of these medications in Canada.

Dr. Cara Tannenbaum is the Scientific Director of the Institute of Gender and Health at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

She is a practicing physician and Professor in the Faculties of Medicine and Pharmacy at the Université de Montréal, where she holds the Chair in Pharmacology, Health and Aging. She has a productive program of research focusing on sex and gender differences and patient education all in the area of drug safety.

She currently leads the Canadian Deprescribing Network and is the recipient of several prestigious awards. Her work on that subject has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Globe and Mail and on national television.

Old Age Ain’t for Sissies: How to Live to 120! @ McGill Department of Family Medicine
May 29 @ 7:00 pm

The McGill University Department of Family Medicine and the St. James Literary Society are pleased to present the Dr. Hirsh Rosenfeld Annual Distinguished Lecture in Family Medicine.

Of interest to the general public as well as to health-care professionals, this Distinguished Lecture Series in Family Medicine was inaugurated in 1990 and was made possible by an endowment by the late Dr. Hirsh Rosenfeld, a Montreal family physician. He was a staunch supporter of a number of educational activities and this lecture series is another example of his generosity.

Refreshments will be served.

This talk will explore the fascinating biology of aging and why this is so challenging in our present day and age. Dr. Clarfield will explain why we get old (usually), but, more importantly, why and how we cannot last forever despite the advances in modern day medicine. He will also give some basic advice on how we can increase the likelihood of living and enjoying a relatively healthy and happy old age.

Dr. A. Mark Clarfield was raised and educated in Toronto, receiving his MD from the University of Toronto in 1975. He went on to specialize first in Family Medicine, then Community Medicine and Public Health and, finally, in Geriatrics.

In the late seventies, he moved to Montreal where he was with the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University from 1978-1992. During that period, Dr. Clarfield was Chief of Geriatrics at the Sir Mortimer B. Davis – Jewish General Hospital, as well as head of the McGill University Division of Geriatric Medicine. He was the Assistant Dean of Students at the Faculty from 1989-1992 and reached the rank of Professor. He presently maintains an adjunct status at McGill University.

In 1992, he moved to Israel. From 1994-2001, he was Head of the Division of Geriatrics at the Ministry of Health in Jerusalem, after which he was appointed Head of Geriatrics at the Soroka Hospital, a 1,100 bed acute care institution and the Sidonie Hecht Professor of Geriatrics at Ben-Gurion University in Beer-sheva, where he now works. In 2009, he was appointed head of BGU’s Medical School for International Health.

Dr. Clarfield’s research interests include Alzheimer disease and the related dementias, the organization of health care services, medical history and ethics. In addition, he publishes medical humour, book reviews, and miscellaneous articles in various newspapers, including occasional pieces in the Montreal Gazette. Dr. Clarfield is married with 3 children. He enjoys several hobbies, including performing folk music with his band, “The Unstrung Heroes”.


Close More Churches? @ St Jax Montréal
Jun 2 @ 2:00 pm

Are we watching the bitter end of the Western Church model, including its colonial steeples and linguistic apartheid? Or, are we poised for what might become the greatest reformation and revival of the church, ever?

Reverend Graham Singh, the new pastor at St Jax Montréal will explore these questions as he examines the Montreal case study in light of a wider radical shift in the way church buildings open to their local communities.

Following the presentation, sandwiches, scones, pastry, tea and coffee will be served.

Rev. Graham Singh is the Rector of St Jax Montréal (the new bilingual identity of the Church of St James the Apostle)

Educated at the London School of Economics, the University of Western Ontario and Cambridge University,  Singh is specially trained in the re-opening of closed historic churches.

He is married to Céline from Paris, France and they have three young children.