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Aboriginal Medical Services

Table of Contents


Race Identity among Aboriginals.

Australian Aboriginal History.

Racism in Australia.

Victim Blaming and its Consequences.

Ways to Reduce the Racism Around.

Nursing Standards.



Introduction to Cultural Safety and Sensitivity

For Jane, it would be much better to take her daughter to aboriginal controlled community health services. It is important for her daughter to learn about the history of her ancestors and the pain that they had to go through. She would not be growing up in a world that hates others for those discriminatory practices. But rather, it is important to stay in close surroundings with the people who have the same origins. In Australia, racism is the result of the racist attitudes of the contemporary community as well as the historical community. Along with these, non-compliance with the political authorities and negligence of the United Nations' standard regarding human rights by the government of Australia also play a significant role in the retention of racism even in this era of globalization. Present Australia is the result of several historical events that are responsible for the development of contemporary Australian culture. People from several countries came to Australia, and the culture of Australia became enriched by them. Among them, people from the United Kingdom have a major contribution to this cultural development in Australia.

Race Identity among Aboriginals

The race identity of Aboriginals in Australia is sometimes called as the Aboriginality. Aboriginality is the self-perception of the people who belong to the indigenous Aboriginal community in Australia. Aboriginal people recognize themselves as Aboriginal Australians. There are two indigenous communities in Australia (Johnson, 2019). Aboriginals are one of them, while another is Torres Strait Islanders. In respect of the clan and language, many other subdivided groups can be found in Australia, such as Yolngu, Noongar, Kaurna, Murri.

The term "Aboriginal" is an outcome of British adoption of the term "Australian". The self-identification of the aboriginal people in Australia is affected by different factors such as pride for their own culture, social solidarity, developing relationships with other cultures. The aboriginal people in Australia have had a long history of facing systematic discrimination from the authority in Australia. Anangu, Murri, Gorrie, Nunga are examples of some of the types of Aboriginal subgroups. 

It has been found through researches and other available data that the aboriginal people do not have the same level of medical treatment as the other common people are exposed to in Australia (Rajan, 2020). It is a fact that many of the aboriginal people were subjected to live in parts of the land in Australia where the majority of the people of the country did not reside. As a result of this, it led to the depreciation of self-respect and it also led to the aboriginal people developing a sense of hostility against the white people in general. However, over the years, the same has reduced largely and the two communities are found to living along with each other. Even in such situations, there is a sense of awareness among the aboriginal people that they are different and have a different history. It is important for Jane to make sure that her daughter learns more about this history and the lessons have to come from Jane herself.

Australian Aboriginal History

The colonials from Europe settled in Australia and thus started the history of colonialism of the land now known as Australians. In comparison to colonialism from the other nations and regions, Australian colonialism was unique in the fact that the white people outnumbered the aboriginal and indigenous Australians. This is evident in the fact that most of Australia today is purely white and the population of aboriginal people in the land is scarce. It is believed that a lot of Australian indigenous populations were wiped out due to the interaction they had with the European people and the diseases that were transmitted to them (Evans, Grimshaw, Philips & Swain, 2018). The diseases like chickenpox, smallpox were brought in from Europe and in the land of Australia, the medical facilities were not established.

Further, the attitude of the European settlers who settled in the land was not friendly or accommodating with that of the indigenous people. They came to the place in search of land and resources and the Australian aboriginal people were like a roadblock for them in securing their resources and adding to their wealth. It is important to mention that most of the aboriginal people lived as nomadic tribes. They did not have a sense of ownership about the land that they resided in. They did not even reside in the same land for a long time. The European settlers saw this particularly as an opportunity that they would utilize to further their agenda. There was violence and subjugation and the aboriginal people had to be isolated from the land that was the source of their living. Since Jane's daughter is at a very early age, she would not be able to grasp all of these. However, it is important for Jane to prepare her mentally for the lessons in the future. Choosing to have a higher level of interaction with aboriginals provides for a good head start for the young child.

Racism in Australia

The racism in Australia has been largely concerning the aboriginal people because their population is the largest in Australia among the non-majoritarian races. Many of the acts of racism in Australia has been supported and endorsed by the government in the past. After the World Wars, Australia mainly followed a policy where the representatives of the country and the representation of culture in the country would be carried out by the white population of the country (Marques, Grabasch & McIntosh, 2018). The government wanted to maintain the British origin culture that the country had and initially treated the aboriginal people as outsiders. There were numerous discriminatory practices against the aboriginal people. For example, they were not allowed to vote until the 1960s. Even worse was the discriminatory practice was taking a mixed-race child away from the aboriginal people. These practices were systematically carried out by the government and it left the aboriginal people suffering in their psyche and their attitude. For Jane's daughter, such a history would be important and significant because she carries the gene of the people who had to suffer from such tremendously discriminatory policies. Her point of view of the world she lives in should not exclude these thought processes.

Victim Blaming and its Consequences

Aboriginals are considered as the primitive and the native residents in any country. In Australia, the race of aboriginals is divided into two groups (Temple et al., 2019). One group consists of aboriginal Australians and the other is Torres Strait, islander peoples. It is known that the aboriginals are living in Australia from 50000 years. Modernization and technological upliftment had made the aboriginals to move from the mainland to the rural and from rural to the forested area in Australia (Temple et al., 2019). If history is research then it can be seen that the step of the Europeans in Australia proved to be oppressive for the aboriginals (Temple et al., 2019). They became slaves in their motherland after the aggression of the Europeans. Not only in history but modern-day also the common factor of racism is present in the society of Australia (Quayle, 2017).

The discrimination between whites and blacks is evident nowadays also. The oppression over blacks has not decreased in the 21st century also. It is found that if any aboriginal is found the victim in the society it proves to be fatal (Quayle, 2017). Invariably it is seen that most of the blacks become victims and the consequences fall against them. It is very easy for the whites to blame a black because they think of themselves to the masters of the country (Quayle, 2017). The society blames a black without knowing the truth or fact. The judgment always gives the first preference to the whites and then it falls upon the aboriginals. In the case of Jane, her daughter being an aboriginal can face several problems if she chooses the general practice area for a check-up. Jane is aware of the situation and for this reason, she uses the aboriginal help center for her child to get an immunization. Her culture had made her aware of the situation in the country and her decision proves to be positive.

Ways to Reduce the Racism Around

One of the reasons it has become far important to talk and communicate about racism is the fact that racial diversity has increased over the years. In the previous era in Australia, it was found that most of the organizational activities involved white people. Today, on the other hand, situations are much more diverse. The diversity across the spectrums have increased. Whether one goes to the general medical center or the aboriginal medical center, one is expected to see a far more diverse group of people who have come for their health treatment. This is because people realize that they have to walk along with each other (Kyle Rudick, 2017). The change in the lives of people reaches every corner of the society even if not everybody benefits from it. However, in this changing environment, the thing that Jane and her daughter can do is initiate a higher level of communication with the people who belong to a different race or color.

Jane's mother has to teach jane about the ways of communicating and the sensibilities that are associated with communication. Jane's mother also has to interact with people of other races and cultures more and more and show her daughter the way. If her young daughter learns such things from such an early age, the communication will remain ingrained in her mind (Daniels, 2019). Aboriginal child care centers would also be expected to have a variety of people from other cultures. The actual need for Jane to make sure that her daughter goes to the aboriginal child care center stems from the fact that she would get to meet more people from her own culture. It is important for her daughter to learn about these cultures. It is also important on part of Jane to make sure that her daughter is ready for a better future.

Nursing Standards

The hospital environment in Australia is modernized and fully equipped with modern technology but the aboriginals have a kind of fear in them about the treatment they have to face in the hospitals (Lane et al., 2017). As they are blacks they are treated with ill manners and proper treatment is not provided to them. It is against the law of nursing (Lane et al., 2017). When a doctor or nurse takes their vow before joining into human service they have to take an oath that they will not have any kind of racism, cultural, cast type of ill mentality (Lane et al., 2017). A nurse should always take care of their patient whether it is of aborigine or white origin. On the other side if a black nurse services in any hospital the white patient should treat with the nurse properly (Zhao et al., 2019). In the olden days, the culture of aboriginals hindered them to go to the hospitals as they found that the place is kind of traumatic and the person will not return after going to the hospital.

They treat themselves by using ancient methods of medicines from nature. But now as technology is improving many aboriginals have to come to the hospitals for their treatment. The treatment sector should provide proper medicine and treatment to all the patients coming to the hospitals (Zhao et al., 2019). No discrimination should be prevailing in the name of the race. Nurses should properly take care of the diseased one whether he or she belongs from the black or white community (Zhao et al., 2019). In the context of medical ground doctors and nurses should care about their patients. Jane is aware that if she chooses the general practice for her 4 years child the proper treatment cannot be provided to her as she belongs from the aboriginal group. But if she admits her child to the aboriginal medical center her child can get proper treatment and diagnosis from the nurses of that place.

Conclusion on Cultural Safety and Sensitivity

In conclusion, it can be said that as the aboriginals are primitive and native of the mainland they should be protected and must be nurtured with more care. There should be no difference in the name of race, caste, and sex. All human beings are created by nature and nature does not discriminate their wards through their color. The aboriginal community is decreasing slowly and the government should take measures to protect them and also amend laws to stop oppression over them. Society must protect its heritage because without heritage a country cannot move forward. Aboriginals have become the country's heritage and by protecting them the country will become more prosperous.

References for Cultural Safety and Sensitivity

Daniels, J. (2019). Racism in Modern Information and Communication Technologieshttps://academicworks.cuny.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1529&context=hc_pubs

Evans, J., Grimshaw, P., Philips, D., & Swain, S. (2018). Australasia:‘Australia for the White Man’. In Equal subjects, unequal rights. Manchester University Press.https://www.manchesteropenhive.com/view/9781526137333/9781526137333.00016.xml

Johnson, A. (2019). What Australia can learn from New Zealand and the Cook Islands. AMSA Journal of Global Health, 13(1), 70-73.https://ajgh.amsa.org.au/index.php/ajgh/article/download/49/52

Kyle Rudick, C. (2017). A critical organizational communication framework for communication and instruction scholarship: Narrative explorations of resistance, racism, and pedagogy. Communication Education, 66(2), 148-167.https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/03634523.2016.1265137?casa_token=J7K51oJXBtwAAAAA:rzv3NBjD5gDj1r6KJ2KAPS2Nf73SHqwQervUUvuUoxxDuazFAq7j-boHUIXNyKwLDpsuhW4RPHVV9g

Lane, R., Halcomb, E., McKenna, L., Zwar, N., Naccarella, L., Davies, G. P., & Russell, G. (2017). Advancing general practice nursing in Australia: roles and responsibilities of primary healthcare organizations. Australian Health Review, 41(2), 127-132.

Marques, B., Grabasch, G., & McIntosh, J. (2018). Fostering landscape identity through participatory design with indigenous cultures of Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand. Space and culture, 1206331218783939.https://www.academia.edu/download/58768238/2018_Marques_et_al_Fostering_Landscape_Identity.pdf

Quayle, A. (2017). Narrating oppression, psychosocial suffering, and survival through the Bush Babies Project (Doctoral dissertation, Victoria University). http://vuir.vu.edu.au/34839/1/QUAYLE%20Amy%20-%20Thesis.pdf

Rajan, M. A. (2020). Quest for Identity and Revelation in Sally Morgan’s My Place. Purakala with ISSN 0971-2143 is an UGC CARE Journal, 31(17), 1016-1018.https://www.purakala.com/index.php/0971-2143/article/download/2533/2335

Temple, J. B., Kelaher, M., & Paradies, Y. (2019). Experiences of Racism among Older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People: Prevalence, Sources, and Association with Mental Health. Canadian Journal on Aging/La Revue canadienne du vieillissement, 1-12. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/44ab/435fc9788d9abf89833b46808cc38f054f2f.pdf

Zhao, Y., Russell, D. J., Guthridge, S., Ramjan, M., Jones, M. P., Humphreys, J. S., & Wakerman, J. (2019). Costs and effects of higher turnover of nurses and Aboriginal health practitioners and higher use of short-term nurses in remote Australian primary care services: an observational cohort study. BMJ Open, 9(2), e023906.https://scholar.google.com/scholar?output=instlink&q=info:ITVvkfzv2l0J:scholar.google.com/&hl=en&as_sdt=0,5&as_ylo=2016&scillfp=12674028073580797682&oi=lle

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