Discus about the stolen generation aboriginal Australia.
The essay deals with the Gibb’s reflection model, which is used as framework for reflecting on the clinical incident where the patient care was affected by the stolen generation of the Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islander. Refection is an important skill for nursing to evaluate their strengths and weakness (Gibbs, 1988).
I have been educated on experiences of the cultural background and the traumatic events faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients. Throughout the semester, I had learning and awareness of the experiences of the Indigenous people which drastically impacted my perspective towards them and rationale for their health issues. On gaining the knowledge of stolen generation of the Indigenous people, I have realised the reason for their mental health issues. The same was also narrated by my fellow nurses who closely worked with these people. Stolen generation refers to removing children from their families due to Aboriginal background. The parents were lied that the children will soon be returned after education but they were soon made slaves to the rich Caucasian families. The culture of the Indigenous and Non-Indigenous people are different in several aspects. These children were then mistreated (Funston & Herring, 2016). It means the Indigenous children went through horrific measures that had great impact on their overall wellbeing. I learned that these community people were found to be high represented in the mental health problems and different chronic illnesses
Though chary in discussing this issue, I could think fairly and work through the conclusion. I felt guilty about the children’s experiences and their parents on being aware of the severity of the issue. However, I could restore my composure as I have no control over the matter. However, I was satisfied with the government’s move on the issue. The federal government did apologise for the past mistake and injustices in this matter (Terszak, 2015). Although history is filled with injustice events it is highly distinguished from the current events. As a nurse I feel more responsible to work towards the common good of the victims of the stolen generations, and then I was before. However, I also feel it is difficult to compensate on an individual basis considering the discrimination against these children. I personally do not believe in discrimination and health care inequity. My feelings have changes on learning these experiences of Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders. I feel nursing is beyond proceeding with clinical regime. I could realise with the help of the readings that experiences like stolen generations had great impact on Indigenous people because they hold great values associated with conformity, traditions, and security. It changed my perception that their cultural values and beliefs would not be the strong determinants of behaviour of present children and adults.
I feel that the evidence related to the child welfare in NSW is conclusive in regards to the issue of stolen generation, because the literature two supports the fact that the children with mixed races were treated differently (Pilger, 2014). This made me unhappy, yet I am please to know the factors affecting the health of the people who were stolen. It includes low self esteem, loneliness, loss of identity, legal problems, poor education, poor access to medical services, legal issues, lack of trust, difficulty in identifying with their religious beliefs (Pilger, 2014). These people are often found with internal guilt, anger resentment that may be the cause of increased prevalence of alcohol abuse, depression, relationship problems, difficulty parenting, violence, criminal offence and others. These factors also affected those who were not stolen I was pleased to learn as it could affect the nursing in the positive manner. I can consider these factors when treating the patients and designing the care plan. So, I feel this area needs improvement as I lack detailed cultural awareness of aboriginals.
In theory there are multiple types of discrimination against Indigenous people, however, today there are various legislations and national policies in place to deal with the issue. There are various health care originations working hard to address the cultural needs of stolen generations. There is more number of nurses training programs to address the cultural barriers then in history. Development of the NMBA standards and NMC code of conduct for nurse’s well guides the culturally appropriate care for the stolen population. However, the theory is not well implemented into practice. In 2013, 66% of the children in the Northern Territory were taken away from their culture and community. One third of the Aboriginal children were removed to non-Aboriginal homes (Cuthbert & Quartly, 2013). It means the cruelty still continues and there is great difference between theory and practice.
I have learnt that my cultural values and beliefs are different from that of the stolen generation. I do not believe in gender discrimination and racism. I believe in respecting people irrespective of their traditions, language, colour and community. I can conclude from my education that my values and beliefs will help me in the treating the patients belonging to stolen generations. I can conclude from my experience that I need to develop my cultural competency and cultural awareness to ensure safety and quality of the health care.
In future encounter with the patients of the stolen generations, I would like to deal with them in culturally competent manner to ensure safety and maintain their rights and dignity. I would like to attend the workshops and seminars to gain more cultural awareness and skills on handling conflicting values and beliefs with the patients. It will help in future to adhere to the ethics code of conduct and nursing standards. I will participate in national conferences on mental health related to Aboriginals to learn their mental health needs. It will help me in continuous professional development (Pool, Poell & ten Cate, 2013). I will participate in the community events to volunteer for stolen generations (Van der Ploeg et al., 2012). It will improve my knowledge on mental and physical health needs as well cultural bias experienced by them. I can in future develop strategies to eliminate discrimination in regards to the health care access.
Cuthbert, D., & Quartly, M. (2013). Forced child removal and the politics of national apologies in Australia. The American Indian Quarterly, 37(1), 178-202.
Funston, L., & Herring, S. (2016). When Will the Stolen Generations End? A Qualitative Critical Exploration of Contemporary'Child Protection'Practices in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities. Sexual Abuse in Australia and New Zealand, 7(1), 51.
Gibbs, G. (1988). Learning by doing: A guide to teaching and learning methods. FEU.
Pilger, J. (2014). Another stolen generation: How Australia still wrecks Aboriginal families. The Guardian.
Pool, I., Poell, R., & ten Cate, O. (2013). Nurses’ and managers’ perceptions of continuing professional development for older and younger nurses: A focus group study. International journal of nursing studies, 50(1), 34-43.
Terszak, M. (2015). Orphaned by the colour of my skin: a stolen generation story. Routledge.
Van der Ploeg, E. S., Mbakile, T., Genovesi, S., & O'Connor, D. W. (2012). The potential of volunteers to implement non-pharmacological interventions to reduce agitation associated with dementia in nursing home residents. International psychogeriatrics, 24(11), 1790-1797.