(Black Press Media)

Racism in B.C. healthcare: Deadline for First Nations survey coming up on Aug. 6

Survey comes after hospital staff allegedly played a blood alcohol guessing game

  • Aug. 5, 2020 6:00 a.m.

By Martha Perkins, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, North Shore News

The emergency room staff allegedly called the game “The Price is Right.”

When an Indigenous person arrived for care, doctors and nurses took turns guessing the patient’s blood alcohol concentration.

“If true, it is intolerable, unacceptable and racist,” B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix said in June after hearing reports of the “game.”

Dix might have been shocked but he wasn’t surprised to hear yet another example of First Nations people being subjected to racist behaviour in the healthcare system. He appointed Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond to lead an investigation.

As part of this investigation, First Nations peoples are encouraged to take part in a provincial survey about discrimination in healthcare services. The deadline has been extended to August 6. It is available here.

“We realize that this survey could be considered long, but we really encourage Indigenous people to complete it, as this is critical information for documenting the extent of Indigenous-specific discrimination in the health system,” the province’s website says. “This information has never been collected so comprehensively in B.C..”

The B.C. Association of Aboriginal Friendship Circles says that “incidents that are reported do not represent the true pervasiveness of anti-Indigenous racism due to barriers that prevent Indigenous peoples from reporting their experiences.

“Many Indigenous people have indicated that they felt there was no way for them to safely report an incident or, if they did report it, that their report was not taken seriously by health care providers.”

The BCAAFC is supporting an initiative called Safe Space. The tech start-up is seeking participants in its pilot cohort and encourages First Nations people to not remain silent if they have experienced mistreatment or racism.

“Patients know that retaliation, being labelled `difficult’ and increased hostility when receiving health services can all occur as a result of raising concerns,” the website announcing the initiative says. “Providers who report can be at risk of losing their employment, negatively impacting their relationships with colleagues and disciplinary action.”

READ MORE: B.C. launches investigation into allegations of racist blood-alcohol guessing game in ER

READ MORE: B.C. First Nations leaders ‘disgusted’ by allegations of racist blood-alcohol guessing game


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Indigenousracism

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Students/staff evacuate Rossland Summit School due to smell of smoke

SD20 says students in different learning groups didn’t come in contact with each other in evacuation

Man whose crime spree began in Nelson pleads guilty in death of female passenger

Anthony Cortez scheduled to be sentenced for 2017 incidents

Castlegar Rebels hold three-day camp before upcoming season

The camp looked a little different this year due to COVID-19 protocols

City of Rossland looks to secure $4M in funding for major infrastructure projects

The funds would help city complete museum renewal and Second Ave. project

Totem pole considered cultural appropriation removed from Nelson’s Hume School

The pole had also become rotted and was seen as dangerous to students

BC Liberal Leader talks drug addiction in the Lower Mainland

Drug addiction and public safety a top priority says Andrew Wilkinson

Pandemic derails CP Holiday Train

Canadian Pacific will work to get donations to food banks while also producing an online music concert

Interior Health reports five new COVID-19 cases

Across the region, 34 cases are active

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Vanderhoof’s Brian Frenkel takes on top job in tough times

We can get through this, new local government leader says

Local councils important, Horgan says as municipal conference ends

B.C. NDP leader says ‘speed dating’ vital, online or in person

Penticton woman sentenced to one year in prison for manslaughter of teen boyfriend

Kiera Bourque, 24, was sentenced for manslaughter in the 2017 death of Penticton’s Devon Blackmore

B.C. Green leader says NDP abandoning environmental plan

Horgan’s claim of unstable government false, Furstenau says

Most Read