The Colleges are committed to create a climate for change, engage and enable stakeholders, and implement and sustain change in cultural safety and humility in health services to First Nations and Aboriginal peoples in BC. This is a high priority for all the Colleges’ public protection mandate.
On May 8 of this year several Board members and College staff attended the BC Health Regulators 2019 Spring Symposium, “Cultural Safety & Humility”, and on June 25 the Council on Licensure, Enforcement & Regulation (CLEAR’s) Vancouver Regional Symposium, “Cultural Awareness: Valuing Indigenous and Minority Populations in Professional Regulation” to learn more about this important subject.
The joint declaration opens the door to formally encouraging all healthcare professionals to complete cultural safety training through programs such as the San’yas Indigenous Cultural Safety Training offered by the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA). Healthcare providers and practitioners, including our Registrants, are encouraged to learn more about cultural safety and cultural humility in healthcare and to make personal commitments to change their everyday practices. All healthcare professionals can be powerful agents of change.
What is Cultural Safety and Humility?
Cultural Safety is an outcome based on respectful engagement that recognizes and strives to address power imbalances inherent in the healthcare system. It results in an environment free of racism and discrimination, where people feel safe when receiving healthcare.
Cultural Humility is a lifelong process of self-reflection to understand personal and systemic biases and to develop relationships based on mutual trust. Cultural Humility involves humbly acknowledging oneself as a learner when it comes to understanding another’s experience.
A Cultural Safety and Humility framework provides a set of protocols for health professionals, organizations to follow in their partnerships and relationships with First Nations and Aboriginal individuals, families, communities and nations on their health and wellness journeys. We can all work to remove bias, stereotyping and discrimination within the healthcare system and offer high-quality care. The College and practitioners should strive to be culturally competent and help create a climate conducive to cultural safety. Started early this year, at College’s meetings, we acknowledge the Indigenous territory on which the meetings are taking place. This is a small but essential step toward reconciliation. This CBC article discusses the rationale and purpose of acknowledging the Indigenous land we stand on: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/territorial-acknowledgements-indigenous-1.4175136
If you are identified as Indigenous and/or you work with the First Nations and Aboriginal population regularly in your practices, we would like to hear your perspectives and to engage with our Registrants to develop strategies to take actions for cultural safety and humility in health service delivery.
Creating a Climate for Change Resource Booklet by First Nationals Health Authority: http://www.fnha.ca/Documents/FNHA-Creating-a-Climate-For-Change-Cultural-Humility-Resource-Booklet.pdf
San’yas Indigenous Cultural Training Program by the Provincial Health Services Authority in BC: www.sanyas.ca
First Nations Health Authority’s Cultural Safety and Cultural Humility Webinars series: http://www.fnha.ca/wellness/cultural-humility/webinars