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Canadian Public Health Association

Are you able to adapt as necessary to people from diverse backgrounds?

  • A Core Competency in the Prevention of Sexually Transmitted and Blood-Borne Infections (STBBIs)

A community health centre in a small city is seeing that its client base is becoming increasingly diverse and is concerned that, due to a lack of culturally appropriate services, the sexual health needs of newcomers are not being addressed. As a result, staff members at the centre plan to adapt some of their current programs so that they are more visible and inclusive of newcomers. However, newcomers have not previously been a priority group and staff members are unsure of the best ways to engage and support this group.

Do you work in the area of sexual health or STBBI program and policy development? Are you able to understand and adapt as necessary to people from diverse backgrounds?

Use the questions below to help you self-assess your knowledge, skills, attitudes and practices related to serving clients from diverse backgrounds. Remember that depending on your role, you may require different levels of proficiency for the various core competencies and it is possible that some of the competencies are not relevant to your work.

  1. Do you understand the factors that may impact vulnerability to STBBIs and in turn the health-related needs of the various population groups that you serve?
  2. What are some approaches that can be used to ensure that your organization/agency is inclusive of people from diverse backgrounds?
  3. How can you improve the physical environment as well as the materials and resources of your organization to reflect the diversity of the communities you serve?
  4. Do you recognize how staff members' values and beliefs may influence their interactions with people from diverse backgrounds?
  5. Do you understand the importance of engaging representatives from the diverse communities that you serve during program planning and/or policy development?

Suggested resources:

This is one of a series of cases on the core competencies for STBBI prevention. View all 26 cases on the core competencies for STBBI prevention.

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