(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

Yellow Point Drama Group puts on socially distanced production of Grace & Glorie

There will be seven performances: three evening shows, and four matinees

Nanaimo-Ladysmith school trustees receive assignments for year

School trustees appointed to Nanaimo-Ladysmith-area schools

Vancouver Island under a thunderstorm watch tonight

Environment Canada forecasts downpour and possible thunder and lightning

B.C. Greens hurrying to get candidates in place for provincial election

No candidates announced yet in Nanaimo, Nanaimo-North Cowichan or Parksville-Qualicum

BC Liberal Leader talks drug addiction in the Lower Mainland

Drug addiction and public safety a top priority says Andrew Wilkinson

Island Corridor Foundation launches survey on importance of Vancouver Island rail

“ICF remains 100 per cent committed to the restoration of full rail service on Vancouver Island”

Island RCMP remind drivers not to text after 19 tickets handed out in 90 minutes

The $368 fines were handed out Tuesday on Norwell Drive and Old Island Highway in Nanaimo

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

Nanaimo RCMP seize firearms, ID, portable debit machine as ‘prolific offender’ arrested

Austin Carlson-McPherson, 24, accused of crimes in Nanaimo, Duncan, Port Renfrew and Sooke

Three years for serial bank robber who hit southern Vancouver Island branch

Lucas Bradwell was wanted for robberies in Abbotsford, Sidney and Vancouver

Local councils important, Horgan says as municipal conference ends

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

Most Read