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Discuss about the Creating a Safe Place that Accommodates Cultural Diversity.

Culture is human behaviour including customs, beliefs, and preferences. These factors vary among people depending on their origin. This report appreciates cultural differences seeks to explore on how to create safe spaces.

Distinction in cultures raises a problem of interaction. To resolve this issue, safe spaces need to be created. Safe spaces ensure that people can communicate freely without being judged. They provide a feeling of social safety where one’s culture is nurtured and respected (Arnold, Lipman, & Cowling, 1994).

This report focuses on how people can learn to accommodate different cultures by respecting and nurturing. It seeks to explain how to create safe places that facilitate interaction among people. It focuses on a video clip by Diversity Nursing on incompetent versus competent cultural care. The video clip is set in a hospital where nurses provide unsafe and safe space for patients.

This report’s objective is to illustrate inhibition of social safety and recommend on how to create safe spaces. In the video clip studied, the nurses are judgmental and do not provide a safe space for explanation. Their fail to appreciate different customs and beliefs. They should be open-minded and allow patients to explain their situations before making conclusions.

Incompetent versus competent cultural are is a video clip created by Diversity Nursing on November 8th, 2011. It was created in a hospital setting to show how nurse how to accommodate patients of different ethnicities and preferences.

Nurse Rida has an Asian patient who believes that coining and cupping can help reduce body pains. Rida wants to examine her patient and finds out she has circular marks on her skin that might be affected. Rida does not allow her patient to explain the situation and immediately concludes that her patient is in an abusive home (Brislin, Worthley and McNab 2006). She decides to report the matter and informs her patient that it would be best to leave her home. The following scene shows how Rita should handle the situation. Rita understands techniques used to relieve pain by different cultures, allows her patient to explain, examines the marks and sensitively explains that they are infected.

To understand how to create a safe space that accommodates the variety of cultures available, one has to know the following keywords.

Safe space- is explained as an environment that allows free expression without worry of being discriminated or feeling uncomfortable. A safe space accommodates differences in beliefs, customs, values, identity, thoughts, background or religion. It respects cultural safety by nurturing and respecting a person’s culture.

Cultural safety- is the practice by a person at work and social places that aim to appreciate cultural diversity. This is by respecting another’s culture and helping nurture it without harassment and discrimination. 

Cultural self-awareness- this is the ability of a person to identify different cultures, be able to keep an open mind about various practices and appreciate them. It helps build a foundation in communicating without offending people’s beliefs and perceptions (Byram, 2012).


Cultural capability- this refers to the ability to acquire knowledge, skills and mannerisms required to plan, offer support and provide services in a way that respects culture. It determines how one can work in various cultures and be able to accommodate different perceptions (Crowne, 2013).

Cultural intelligence- this is the ability of a person to work and relate effectively with individuals in various cultures. To attain cultural information, one has to possess a variety of capabilities. According to Crowne (2013), they include; motivation to enjoy and gain from cultural diversity, knowledge about all similar and different aspects of various culture, appreciation of these differences and planning for diversity encounters, and ability to adapt behaviour that bests suits each culture.

To create an environment that promotes free expression and eliminates discrimination, one has to achieve cultural intelligence. The steps to accomplishing such capacity start from being aware of the existence of various beliefs, customs, values, and perceptions (Bruhn, 2005)  . Such awareness can be acquired by familiarising oneself with the different cultures that exist in different regions all over the world. In so doing, a person knows about similarities in cultures and also identifies what makes them distinct (Crowne, 2013).

The second step will then involve being able to stand on one's customs and beliefs and understanding different perspectives in their original point of view. Instead of judging certain practices, a person should try to appreciate why people conduct these practices. One has to be open-minded to do so (Crowne, 2013).

Once a person acquires knowledge of different practices and understands why they are conducted, the next step is trying to incorporate these beliefs into one’s way of life. This does not necessitate one to abandon their culture but rather, learn various behaviours that are appreciated (Peterson, 2004). In so doing one acquire skills that enable them to deal with different encounters and promote cultural safety.

According to the video by Diversity Nursing, Rida is a nurse that lacks awareness of different practices used in relieving pain. She mistakes the practice of coining, cupping and acupuncture by Asians as a case of abuse. Also, when her patient tries to explain, Rida doesn’t give her time and rushes out the door insisting that she was going to report the incident.

Rida's behaviour depicts the lack of cultural awareness as she is not conversant with the Asian practice of pain relief. Moreover, she lacks the intelligence necessary to handle the situation and draws conclusions without ask for an explanation. This is an unsafe space for the patient. The environment excludes the patient, and Rida's behaviour involves shouting and rushing out the door ("Incompetent vs. Competent Cultural Care", 2016).

However, in the subsequent scene, Rida is aware of her patient’s practices. She understands how the pain relief method works. Rida is calm and allows her patient to explain the circumstances that led to the need for such an approach. Rida handles the situation intelligently and explains to her patient that though the pain relief process was necessary at the time, it lead to the patient being infected.


In the second scene, Rida is keen to provide a safe environment that allows her patient to explain her condition. Rida does her best in ensuring the environment is inclusive. She does so by showing her understanding of the acupuncture method of pain relief ("Incompetent vs. Competent Cultural Care", 2016).

TABLE 1: cultural safety issues observed in the video clip.

Time frame in seconds

Physical factors

Communication factors

Signs of inclusion and exclusion

Display or lack of cultural intelligence.

0:17s- 0:55s

A hospital ward with the patient on her bed and the nurse standing by her bedside.

The nurse is loud when she speaks and does not read the patient’s body language

Exclusive; the nurse lacks awareness of the pain relief method.

The nurse requires cultural intelligence. Rida doesn’t listen to the explanation and rushes to make conclusions


A hospital ward with the patient on her bed and the nurse standing by the bedside examining her patient.

The nurse speaks calmly, takes her time to read her patient’s body language.

Inclusive; the nurse is aware of the acupuncture pain relief method.

Displays cultural intelligence. The nurse explains to the patient about her infection without offending her customs.

At the beginning of the video clip, Nurse Rida depicts the lack of any knowledge of the various practices that help in pain relief. This lack of awareness is evident as soon as she notices the circular marks on her patient’s back, she concludes that the patient is a victim of violence. Besides, Rida lacks cultural intelligence because instead of allowing her patient to explain how she got the marks, Rida is quick to show how uncomfortable she is with the situation. She rushes out the door and insists on making a report of domestic violence.

Later on the video clip, a different scenario is shown. Here, Rida is aware of the acupuncture pain relief method. She notices the marks and acknowledges it. She shows understanding and makes her patient comfortable who explains how she got the marks. Rather than rushing out the door, Rida examines her patient's scores and realises they are infected (Quappe and Cantatore, 2005)  . She is culturally intelligent as she carefully to her patient about the infected wounds in a culture respecting manner.

According to the studied video clip, Rida needs to acquire information on practices with a medical orientation. That way she will be aware of the marks they leave behind and will not be caught off guard again (Tierney, 2007). Besides, Rida should learn to appreciate various practices as it will help her understand the medical perspective of her patients. She should also embrace these customs and will, therefore, be able to act accordingly towards her patient.

Besides acquiring knowledge, she should aim at achieving cultural intelligence. She will gain better communication skills on how to pass information without offending one’s beliefs. She will appreciate diversity and learn to incorporate some of these differences in her way of life (Tierney, 2007). This way she can create a safer space environment for her patients to explain themselves without feeling uncomfortable.


This report focuses on social safety and how to create a safe space that accommodates cultural diversity and appreciates different personal identities. It explains the various concepts that should be understood to understand the necessity of creating safe spaces. It reviews a video clip by Diversity Nursing that shows safe and unsafe areas. The video clip demonstrates this two scenarios by showing one with a dangerous environment and another the recommends the changes that should be made. The report describes steps to be taken so as to ensure a safe space and towards accomplishing social intelligence.


Arieli, D., Friedman, V., & Hirschfeld, M. (2012). Challenges on the path to cultural safety in Nursing education. International Nursing Review, 59(2), 187-193.

Arnold, M., Lipman, S., & Cowling, M. (1994). Culture and anarchy. New Haven: Yale University Press.

Brislin, Worthley and McNab (2006) – cultural intelligence

Bruhn (2005) – culture brain interactions

Byram, M. (2012). Language awareness and (critical) cultural awareness – relationships,comparisons and contrasts. Language Awareness, 21(1-2), 5-13.

Crowne, K. (2013). Cultural exposure, emotional intelligence, and cultural intelligence: An exploratory study. International Journal Of Cross-Cultural Management, 13(1), 5-22. Cultural diversity & awareness.

Flanja (2009) – culture shock & intercultural communication

Glapka, E. (2015). On a stepping-stone to cultural intelligence: Textual/discursive analyses of media reception in cultural studies. International Journal Of Cultural Studies.

Gollings, J. (2011). Cultural awareness. BDJ, 210(11), 501-502 

Hall, L. & Wilkes, M. (2015). “It’s a safe environment for us Indigenous students” – Creating a culturally safe learning space for Indigenous Pre-Tertiary students. Learning Communities: International Journal Of learning in social contexts, 17 (indigenous pathways), 121-122.

Holley and Steiner (2005) – creating safe spaces

Incompetent vs. Competent Cultural Care. (2016). YouTube. Retrieved 15 October 2016     

 Peterson, B. (2004). Cultural intelligence. Yarmouth, Me.: Intercultural Press.

Quappe and Cantatore (2005) – cultural awareness

Spector, R. (2004). Cultural diversity in health & illness. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Tierney, S. (2007). Accommodating cultural diversity. Aldershot, England: Ashgate.

Journal of Ethnic & Cultural Diversity in Social Work Call for Papers. (2015). Journal Of Ethnic And Cultural Diversity In Social Work, 24(2), 184-185.

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