Current Problems

Health (18-24)

In Plain Sight Report

December 1, 2021

Victoria Times Colonist – Fewer than half of the 24 recommendations to address Indigenous-specific racism in the province’s health-care system have been fully implemented on the one-year anniversary of the In Plain Sight report. Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond said she’s been “closely” monitoring progress:

  • apologies issued by health system leaders and regulatory bodies,
  • a critical amendment to the B.C. Human Rights Code to include Indigenous identity as a protected ground from discrimination, and
  • the hiring of Indigenous senior leaders across health authorities and the Health Ministry to lead change from the inside.

But much more work is needed, Turpel-Lafond said. “In the meantime, Indigenous Peoples have continued to be disproportionately harmed and oppressed, and they continue to die as a result of the impacts of racism and the twin public health emergencies.” Turpel-Lafond said the province has not used available tools to uphold obligations under the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act to address anti-Indigenous racism as it relates to the right to health — including the right to traditional medicines, access without discrimination to health and social services.