Indigenous Cultural Safety (ICS) Training is an interactive and facilitated online training program for professionals working in the Ontario health system. It addresses the need for increased Indigenous cultural safety within the system by bringing to light service provider biases and the legacies of colonization that continue to affect service accessibility and health outcomes for Indigenous people.
The Core ICS training modules are designed as foundational courses to increase knowledge and enhance self-awareness. They provide a vital opportunity for health professionals to examine the ways in which their own culture, education and history have shaped their health practice, especially with regard to stereotypes that impact Indigenous experiences of the health system. Participants learn about terminology; diversity; aspects of colonial history such as Residential Schools and Indian Hospitals; and contexts for understanding social disparities and health inequities. Through interactive activities, discussion and personal reflection, participants examine the present-day realities of colonization that continue to shape Indigenous health and wellness.
Core ICS courses (health and mental health training both available) provide 8 hours (depending on your previous knowledge and your learning style) of online, instructor-facilitated learning over an 8 week period. Online discussions, interactive activities, videos and contributions between peers and the facilitation team provide rich learning opportunities to expand and share information. Upon completion a certificate is awarded and access is provided to further information and post-training resources.
The primary goal of Ontario ICS training is to transform our health care system into one that is based on respect and understanding of the unique history of the Indigenous population. Upon course completion, participants are able to:
- Describe the diversity of Indigenous peoples within Ontario
- Describe colonial policies specific to Residential Schools & Indian Hospitals
- Describe the impact of colonization on current Indigenous health care issues
- Discuss the significance of health disparities to health care providers
- Define culture, race, and social identity
- Define the role of self-awareness in cultural safety
- Understand the ways in which assumptions and stereotypes affect levels of care within a health care setting
- Develop strategies to build collaborative relationships with Indigenous patients/clients
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