26 June 2020

“We need to Chen Chen Stway – Stand and Work Together (Squamish language) – to hold each other up, support one another in order to live in this world in a good way and be able to move forward in all that we need to do and not allow racism and discrimination and violence to happen anymore, in any way.”
– BCPSQC Elder Advisor Syexwáliya (Ann Whonnock)

In light of recent allegations of a racist game being played within emergency departments, we want to amplify Syexwáliya’s words. As allies in the health care system, it is vital that we use our influence to ensure that every British Columbian has access to high-quality, culturally safe care.

Racism, discrimination and violence against people of colour are not acceptable. We are committed to standing and working together with Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and organizations to make our province’s health care system more inclusive, diverse and welcoming. This includes advancing cultural safety and humility and collaborating with partners to identify and tear down barriers to quality care that are rooted in racism and discrimination.

We do not have all the answers, and are on organizational and personal learning paths so that we can be allies for Indigenous peoples. We are very grateful to our partners at the First Nations Health Authority for their work to promote cultural safety and humility, and encourage others to explore some of the resources they have created:

Cultural Safety & Humility Resources

Creating a Climate for Change
This resource booklet is based on the commitment of all provincial health care partners to do better when it comes to culturally safe and humble care for First Nations and Aboriginal people. The booklet names the problem, offers definitions of key concepts, offers testimony from clients about racism in the health system and provides a high-level overview of the Declaration of Commitment to Cultural Safety and Humility.

Webinar Action Series
The series supported the development of tools and skills on how to be effective allies for advancing cultural safety and humility and what health service staff and allies can do to understand and integrate this work into their practice or interaction with First Nations and Aboriginal Clients. Webinars featured thought leaders such as Joe Gallagher, Dr. Evan Adams, Dr. Nadine Caron, Margo Greenwood and representatives from each regional health authority in the province.

Key Drivers and Ideas for Change
System-wide change begins with every individual that works in health care. This document can support health service staff and allies to achieve our collective BC health systems goal of culturally safe health services for First Nations and Aboriginal people in BC. Key Drivers and Ideas for Change offers practical tips and ideas for enhancing cultural safety in five areas: Values and Attitudes, Structures and Policy, Evaluation and Research, Training and Development, and Leading Practice.

Pledge Card
Do you want to help socialize and promote cultural safety and humility in your organization and the greater health care system? Download this pledge card, make your commitment and share it widely.

We invite you to join us in working to create a culturally safe health care system.

Chen Chen Stway –  Stand and Work Together (Squamish language)