B.C. Representative for Children and Youth Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond speaks to a reporter in Vancouver on November 13, 2015. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)

B.C. Representative for Children and Youth Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond speaks to a reporter in Vancouver on November 13, 2015. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)

Survey, hotline launched amid probe into racist blood-alcohol guessing game at B.C. hospital

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond has been appointed to lead an investigation by Health Minister Adrian Dix

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond says her investigation into allegations of anti-Indigenous racism in B.C.’s health-care system has sparked hundreds of calls and emails from people who have faced discrimination by doctors and nurses in the province.

Turpel-Lafond was appointed to lead an investigation in June by Health Minister Adrian Dix after highly disturbing allegations were brought forward that emergency room doctors and nurses in at least one hospital were guessing the blood-alcohol levels of patients in similar fashion to TV game show The Price Is Right.

On Thursday (July 9), Turpel-Lafond announced the launch of an online survey and hotline for Indigenous people interested and able to share their experiences.

“This is a truth-telling exercise on the state of racism against Indigenous people in the health care system,” the former provincial child advocate said.

READ MORE: B.C. launches investigation into allegations of racist blood-alcohol guessing game in ER

Led by Turpel-Lafond, the investigation team includes members with direct clinical experience, knowledge of the health care system and expertise in conducting complex investigations, she said. It will look at the specific allegation brought forward, as well as a wider look at systemic racism in B.C. health care.

Anybody with specific experience or knowledge of racism in the health care system is being encouraged to call the hotline at 1-888-600-3078 or by email at addressing_racism@gov.bc.ca.

“I urge Indigenous peoples to participate in our survey so that we can get an accurate picture of how broad these problems are,” Turpel-Lafond said. “This is your chance to speak.”

More to come.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

racism

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A rendering of Front Street transportation improvements set to get underway as soon as next week. (McElhanney image/City of Nanaimo)
Work set to start on Front Street cycle track in downtown Nanaimo

Road work and street reconfiguration project scheduled to start in March, finish in May

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ business committee is recommending busing for the Rutherford and Frank J. Ney elementary school area be retained. (News Bulletin file)
Nanaimo school trustees vote against cutting Rutherford-Frank J. Ney bus route

Staff report points to yearly transportation budget deficits

Nanaimo RCMP seek help in locating Shannon Lettington, 35. (Submitted photo)
Nanaimo RCMP searching for missing 35-year-old woman

Shannon Lettington, of Nanaimo, has not contacted her family since October

This month Christy Blom’s Springtime show is on display at Art 10 Gallery. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo painter welcomes spring with watercolour exhibition

Christy Blom presents month-long ‘Springtime’ show at Art 10 Gallery

Lucas Philp, senior fish culturist at Vancouver Island Trout Hatchery, packs up pipes and hoses used to transfer trout from the transport truck into lakes, shortly after releasing about 500 rainbow trout into Colliery Dam No. 3 lake Wednesday. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
There are fresh fish to catch in Nanaimo’s lakes

Vancouver Island Trout Hatchery released thousands of catchable-size rainbow trout this week

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the B.C. legislature press theatre to give a daily update on the COVID-19 pandemic, April 6, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. nears 300,000 COVID-19 vaccinations, essential workers next

564 new cases, four deaths, no new outbreaks Thursday

Beef to the plow driver who completely soaked me in dirty slush at the bus stop at Fifth and Hillcrest. I could tell you were driving quite fast so I tried to back up as far as the snowbank would allow but you did not slow down. I am 68 and had to pick up a prescription and had no choice but to continue on soaking wet.
Beefs & Bouquets, March 3

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Canada’s hockey dad had battled Parkinson’s disease and other health issues

Municipal Affairs Minister Josie Osborne speaks in the B.C. legislature, March 4, 2021. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals, NDP sing in harmony on local election reforms

Bill regulates paid canvassers, allows people in condo buildings

The intersection of Melrose Street and Third Avenue. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Suspect in custody after two pedestrians struck in Port Alberni hit and run

RCMP asking for video footage, credit witnesses for quick arrest

(National Emergency Management Agency)
No tsunami risk to B.C. from powerful New Zealand earthquake: officials

An 8.1 magnitude earthquake shook the north of New Zealand Thursday morning

Comox Valley RCMP had access to 20 Street blocked off between Cousins and Choquette avenues as they conducted a raid of a house on the block. Photo by Terry Farrell
Comox Valley RCMP raid Courtenay problem house, several arrests made

Comox Valley RCMP conducted a raid of a problem house on 20th… Continue reading

(AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)
Pandemic stress, isolation key factors as to why Canadians turned to cannabis, alcohol

Study found that isolation played key role in Canadians’ substance use

Most Read