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Supervision Intervention Strategies

Recruitment and Retention Toolkit   Supervision Intervention Strategies   Culturally Competent Supervision [2.8.12]

Culturally Competent Supervision [2.8.12]

Supervisors in behavioral health care organizations must be able to effectively communicate with an increasingly diverse set of people. Most of the recent attention concerning cultural competency in the field has been focused on providing cultural competent services to consumers, i.e., how the workforce interacts with clients. However, supervisors should support the ideal that diversity adds value to the entire organization.

In their article, Culturally Competent Organizations, authors Tim Brownlee and Kien Lee define cultural competence, discuss its importance to organizations in an increasingly diverse society, and provide valuable guidance for supervisors to use in promoting a culturally competent workplace. The article is one of many resources on the Community Tool Box Web on cultural competence.

The goal of the Center of Excellence for Cultural Competence from the New York State Psychiatric Institute is to address a growing need for culturally and linguistically appropriate mental health care in New York State. The Center’s resource page includes issues of Cultural Competence Matters reports and articles from Mental Health News. There is an extensive list of links to resources dealing with cultural competence.

SAMHSA states that “Being culturally competent and aware is to be respectful and inclusive of the health beliefs and attitudes, healing practices, and cultural and linguistic needs of different population groups. Behavioral health practitioners can bring about positive change by better understanding the differing cultural context among various communities, and being willing and able to work within that context.”

TIP 59: Improving Cultural Competence is available for download or copy at the SAMHSA store. This TIP assists professional care providers and administrators in understanding the role of culture in the delivery of substance abuse and mental health services. It discusses racial, ethnic, and cultural considerations and the core elements of cultural competence.

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