From Symbols to Systems Framework: Strengthening Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural security in mainstream organisations
NDS welcomes the revised iteration of the ‘From Symbols to Systems Framework’, which includes templates to guide mainstream health, community and justice organisations to improve cultural security for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees and staff.
Developed by The Long Walk and Inner North West Primary Care Partnership, the framework defines what being a culturally secure organisation means, and its critical importance as a prerequisite for cultural safety; someone’s personal experience of services being delivered by providers.
The framework highlights the direct connection between the cultural security of mainstream services provided for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their health and wellbeing outcomes, and emphasises the importance of cultural security in forging strong strategic partnerships with Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations and communities.
Included in the framework are key actions for improving cultural security in mainstream organisations, a ‘how to’ guide for service organisations and a self-assessment tool that can be completed to identify what is being done well and areas for improvement.
The first iteration of ‘From Symbols to Systems: Strengthening Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Security in Mainstream Organisations’ was published in 2017, and in 2018 the framework was piloted with Diabetes Victoria and Merri Health. All learnings from the pilots have now been incorporated into the latest version of the framework, developed following Garralak Consulting’s Evaluation Report of the From Symbols to Systems Pilot Project.
Although developed for the community services sector, the framework can be utilised by any organisation wanting to strengthen cultural security.
You can find more information, and to access the latest version of the From Symbols to Systems framework and self-assessment tool on the Supporting Aboriginals webpage.