“The Guide forms a crucial part of our reconciliation journey. It is a valuable resource for our staff, providing advice on using culturally appropriate language when speaking with, and about, First Nations peoples,” explains Marie Alford, Head of Dementia Professional Services, Dementia Centre.
Developed in consultation with First Nations peoples, the Guide highlights key cultural practices and lists general principles to support building a strong relationship with First Nations peoples and their families.
A safe environment means using appropriate language We understand that improving cultural safety and creating a safe environment for First Nations peoples living with dementia can enhance access to the healthcare system and improve health outcomes.
A key part of ensuring cultural safety is the use of respectful and culturally appropriate language. The guide provides advice on the best language choices by including a list of terms that should be avoided, the reason why they shouldn't be used and recommended alternatives.
“By improving our understanding of First Nations communities and perspectives, and being mindful of what is culturally appropriate, we can ensure that we better understand their needs and can continue to set the standard in relationship-based care,” said Ms Alford.