Principles Underlying CBPATSISP

The work of the Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP) comes from the principles in The National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ Mental Health and Social and Emotional Well Being 2017-2023 and the NHMRC Ethical Conduct in research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and Communities: Guidelines for Researchers and Stakeholders (2018)

The principles that underlie the Aboriginal and Torres Strait indicators of best practice are listed below:

  • Are concerned with reconnection and community life
  • Are concerned with restoration and community resilience
  • Are a means of empowering people to regain a sense of control and mastery over their lives
  • Have a focus on social and emotional wellbeing and mental health promotion, rather than solely focusing on mental illness and suicide
  • Have a focus on recovery and healing from stress and trauma
  • Reflect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander understandings of health, mental health and suicidal behaviours
  • Have strategies that are Indigenous-led, family focused, culturally responsive and context specific
  • Are concerned with self-determination and community governance
  • Include activities that use culturally responsive techniques and methods and processes
  • Use interdisciplinary approaches that provide outreach services
  • Value and enact partnerships with Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services to facilitate ownership and involvement from local communities
  • Involve Indigenous people in all stages of consultation, negotiation and decision-making processes to establish community ownership of suicide prevention activities and other initiatives
  • Recognise and harness the broad range of skills and expertise of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to improve health and wellbeing and reduce suicidal behaviours
  • Ensure that organisations and staff are culturally competent and that services are developed and delivered in a culturally safe and responsive manner

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Indicators for Best Practice

Programs and services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be based on the above principles and be able to demonstrate how they meet the below Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander indicators for best practice.

1.    The program uses the guiding principles by having:

a.   A cultural and community focus

b.    Strengthening Indigenous governance

c.    Demonstrating  cultural respect

2.    NHMRC Ethical Guidelines were considered in developing the program or service.

3.    Community/cultural governance are in place for the program or service.

4.    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were involved in the development of the program or service or steps were taken to include them later.

5.    The organisation of the program or service is involved with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community groups as shown by:

a.    Process being community-led and directed

b.    Formal partnerships

c.     Other types of collaboration

6.     An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community reference group or similar was established for the program or service:

a.    The group included key stakeholders or members of the target group (eg: youth, elders, consumers, carers, LGBTIQ) and meetings were held regularly

7.     The program or service considers the social and historical context of where people are living.

8.     The program is specific to local groups by considering gender and location where delivered.

9.     The program has relationships/integrates with similar programs, services and other stakeholders.

10.    The program or service is working with the local Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services.

11.     There is evidence that community capacity building took place.

12.    Ongoing activity is in place to ensure a continuous development/quality improvement process, program is being refined.

13.    There is follow-up for participants after completion of the program or service.

14.    Community feedback processes are built into the program or service.

15.    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff/workers are involved in program or service development and implementation.

16.    Non-Aboriginal staff/workers involved had undertaken cultural competence and safety training.

Our Guiding Principles

The guiding principles that inform the overall work of the CBPATSISP and specifically the CBPATSISP Evaluation Framework include the key principles of the LiFE Framework and the nine guiding principles from The National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ Mental Health and Social and Emotional Well Being 2017-2023. The renewed Framework is endorsed by the Commonwealth, State and Territory governments and represents agreement among a wide range of stakeholders on the broad strategies needed to support the whole-of-life view of health held by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People.

These principles take into account the cultural, social, spiritual, economic, historical and contemporary context of Indigenous communities in the delivery of health, mental health and social service. They require that program service delivery and practices are adapted to local cultural and community context to facilitate community engagement, ownership and thereby the likely uptake of prevention initiatives. These principles are:

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