Cultural Safety and Humility (CSH)

Indigenous Artwork featuring a hand holding a feather representing the unity of the people

The CDBC acknowledges that when it comes to cultural safety and humility with Indigenous peoples, it needs to start with all of us.

We remain committed to exercise our mandate of public safety and support more inclusive and equal health care delivery to Indigenous peoples through the regulation of dietitians.

The following links are published pages on the CDBC website where you can go for more information related to CSH:

“An eagle feather is significant to many Indigenous peoples. One Squamish Nation Elder told me one story about why we may hold a feather – because Eagle flies up so high it looks down and sees all of humanity as one, cannot see our various nations or small differences, Eagle just sees us as one people. When we hold a feather, we remind ourselves of that perspective, and can speak with respect and honesty to each other like the family that we all are”. – Aaron Nelson-Moody / Tawx’sin Yexwulla, Artist

Cultural safety is an outcome based on respectful engagement that recognizes and strives to address power imbalances inherent to health care relationships. It results in an environment free of racism and discrimination, where people feel safe and supported to access, receive, and make informed decisions about their health care.

Cultural humility involves educating health professionals on the history of the treatment of Indigenous peoples throughout Canadian history and facilitate self-reflection in understanding personal and systemic biases that may prevent Indigenous peoples from accessing health care. It aims to develop relationships based on reciprocal trust and listening, while acknowledging oneself as a learner when it comes to understanding another’s experience.

On March 1, 2017, all BC Health Regulators declared their commitment to making the health system more culturally safe for Indigenous peoples by signing the Declaration of Commitment to Cultural Safety and Humility. Signing the Declaration of Commitment reflects the priority placed on advancing Indigenous cultural safety and humility among Dietitians by committing to actions and processes which will ultimately embed culturally safe practices within all levels of health professional regulation.

On July 27, 2021, the CDBC published Indigenous Racism in BC Health Care: Joint Statement of Apology and Commitment to Action.

On February 23, 2022, the CDBC published a short document called Indigenous Specific Racism and Colonialism in Dietetics, which addresses the history and impact of colonialism within dietetics and what the CDBC is doing to contribute to a better future.

On September 30, 2022, the CDBC adopted the Indigenous Cultural Safety, Humility (ICSH), and Anti-Racism Standard of Practice along with ten other health profession regulators in BC. The standard is informed by the recommendations from the In Plain Sight report and supports several existing CDBC Standards of Practice (4, 9, 12, 13, 14) in fulfilling the CDBC’s commitment of eliminating Indigenous-specific racism and fostering culturally safe practice in BC’s health care system.

In September 2023, nine BC health profession regulatory colleges, including CDBC, have jointly released a comprehensive progress report called the Joint Apology and Commitment to Action (2021-2023) Report, outlining Indigenous cultural safety, humility, and anti-racism activities in the two years since signing a Statement of Apology and Commitment to Action.

Icon of the Pledge Document for registrants to complete

Dietitian’s Commitment

In 2016, FNHA carried out a campaign to support health care professionals in achieving the collective goal of culturally safe health services for First Nations and Aboriginal people in BC. The campaign was called #It Starts With Me.

I am looking for information on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI)

It is also important to note that although EDI differs from the concepts of cultural safety and humility, they are closely related and should be used in conjunction during practice. For more information regarding equity, diversity, and inclusion, please refer to:

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion page and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Q&A