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Reflecting on Indigenous History Month and Equity in Nursing Practice

June 1, 2023

As Indigenous History Month approaches, we encourage everyone to reflect on the importance of this month and the progress made in recognizing and respecting Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island.

As we reflect, it is important to recognize the history and diversity of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples in Canada and to acknowledge the need for continued learning and reconciliation.

This year marks significant milestones for Indigenous peoples.

  • The doctrine of discovery was officially renounced on March 30, 2023. This doctrine, was used to claim ownership of Indigenous lands, and has been a source of ongoing trauma and oppression for Indigenous Peoples. Its removal is a crucial step towards the recognition of Indigenous sovereignty.
  • On May 4, 2023, members of Parliament declared Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit People (MMIWG2S) a national emergency, highlighting the urgent need for action and accountability. As we continue to learn, we must also work towards ending the systemic violence and injustices that impact Indigenous peoples today.

It is imperative that Indigenous patients in the health-care system receive culturally safe care. The CRNA is committed to ensuring that Indigenous peoples are treated with respect in our health system and provided with culturally safe care. To support this commitment, we have invested significant time and effort in updating our Indigenous learning course Stronger Together: Learning Through Indigenous Perspectives. The updated course will be available to all registrants on June 21, 2023, and includes new interviews, reflections and perspectives from Elders on Treaty 8 Territory. The information from this course is a valuable resource to inform nursing practice and the delivery of culturally safe care.

As we recognize Indigenous History Month, let us commit to continuing to learn about and honour the history, heritage and diversity of Indigenous peoples, and to working towards a future of reconciliation and healing.

Joy Peacock
CEO and Register