2023 Northern BC Research and Quality Conference - Concurrent Session Information

Conference Poster

Concurrent Session G 

Date: November 8

Time: 1:00pm - 2:00pm 

Location: University of Northern BC, 6-307

Theme: Cultural Safety and Health Equity & Indigenous Health and Wellness    

Oral Presenters:

Sheila Blackstock & Viviane Josewski 

Title: Weaving Wisdom: The co-creation, co-implementation, and co-evaluation of a strategic framework for decolonizing nursing in northern and rural First Nations, Métis, and Inuit contexts

Aim: To discuss the formation and preliminary results of a unique nation-based community research collaboration between Northern Indigenous communities, UNBC and Northern Health aimed at co-creating, co-implementing, and co-evaluating a strategic framework for decolonizing nursing in the North.
Methods: Informed by a Two-Eyed Seeing and Indigenous decolonizing and anti-colonial methodologies, our approach amplifies Indigenous voices through partnerships to co-create and implement a collective vision for enacting cultural safety, cultural humility and anti-racism in nursing pedagogy, research, and practice in the North. 
Person/Family/Community Partner Engagement: Representatives of local Indigenous communities and organizations, Northern Health, UNBC faculty and students have been invited to a one-day gathering to share their experiences and perspectives on key areas of concerns, priorities, and action items for decolonizing nursing. Using a mixed methods design, data collection is facilitated by an experienced consultant and an Elder/knowledge keeper and involved small and group sharing circles, artistic renderings, surveys, and note-taking. 
In Progress: Preliminary themes from the sharing circles and survey results will be discussed and mapped out for visualization. Themes will illuminate the guiding principles, objectives, strategic priority areas and pathways for action to be implemented over the next three to five years within the UNBC School of Nursing. 
Conclusion: Anti-Indigenous racism movements in healthcare and beyond, necessitates Indigenization and decolonization changes must be a priority across many Canadian nursing schools. However, to be effective, such actions must be Indigenous-informed and locally relevant. By weaving together the wisdom of Indigenous communities and organizations in the North, Northern Health, and UNBC nursing students and faculty to co-create a vision for enacting cultural safety, cultural humility, and anti-Indigenous racism, our research is an example of a novel, community-driven, collaborative approach to decolonizing nursing that is responsive 

Melissa Bates 

Title: Who speaks for the trees? A collaborative, Indigenous-informed exploration of the environmental and well-being co-benefits of connecting with forest ecosystems

Objective: This project seeks to explore how and in which ways Indigenous cultural revitalization associated with connecting to old-growth forests may provide a benefit not only for sensitive ecosystems and climate change mitigation but also support wellness and healing in partnership with Lheidli T’enneh First Nation. 

Methods: This strengths-based research project seeks to undertake an ‘Indigenist’ community-based participatory approach that will incorporate an Etuaptmumk or a two-eyed seeing theoretical framework. Each step of the phased research design will be guided by the ‘five Rs’: relationship, respect, reciprocity, relevance, and responsibility to ensure it is conducted with and for those involved and is in line with the First Nations principals of Ownership, Control, Access and Possession. An adaptive research design which is intentionally flexible enough to include or omit methods and modes of analysis has been important in the development of this project. 

Person/Family/Community Partner Engagement: This research project includes a Community Advisory Group made of Lheidli T’enneh First Nation members to provide guidance, input and feedback on the development of methods and data analysis.   

Expected Results: The outcomes will be multi-faceted. This research will hopefully demonstrate how research can support the goals of community, by being designed with input from community partners. Additionally, by keeping the focus of the project on co-benefits it can enable positive action and illuminate a pathway to climate solutions. This presentation will focus on the expected outcomes of co-benefits framing, supported by the literature and through the experiences of community members engaged in these practices. 

Jennifer Cochrane

Title: Bringing Data Closer to Home: Amplifying First Nation Perspectives and Opportunities in Data Access to Inform Nation Based Health Decision Making

This Master based research project in progress aims to amplify Indigenous perspectives in data access to inform Nation based health decision-making. Through examining the use case of First Nation community-operated COVID-19 diagnostic instruments to inform community-specific public health actions and decisions, this research aims to reflect and expand on the potential of bringing lab diagnostics and other health data opportunities closer to home to support First Nation health sovereignty.   

Utilizing Indigenous research methods, including critical place inquiry and respect for "all our relations," which honor the interconnectedness between human health and land, water, and air health, this Indigenous strength-based research seeks to highlight community strengths, colonial system deficits and ideas for improvement in health data access with First Nation communities. This research will include perspectives from health leadership in First Nation communities that used a COVID-19 diagnostic instrument to inform local public health decision-making, and First Nation Health Authority leadership who supported the implementation of the "bringing testing closer to home" project in B.C. Through connections with the Public Health Agency of Canada, Indigenous Services Canada and National Microbiology Laboratory, this study will also emphasize envisioning future possibilities for addressing other health challenges by exploring the potential application of emerging technology for public and environmental health monitoring purposes. 

In conclusion, this research highlights the importance of respecting Indigenous peoples' rights, health perspectives, and equity in access to data to support Nation based health decision-making. Through recognizing the link between health data access and the implementation of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People Act (DRIPA) in British Columbia (B.C.), perspectives to inform policy and program development initiatives that support Indigenous led-approaches to health and health sovereignty become critical and relevant to moving forward in a good way.