Giving Voice to Cultural Safety of Indigenous Wildland Firefighters in Canada Project
February 23 2022 | 1200-1300 MST
For decades, Indigenous firefighters and fire operations staff have been engaged in wildland fire suppression activities, formally and informally. Little is known or understood about the experiences of Indigenous wildland firefighting personnel. To address this deficit, the Turtle Island Consulting Services Inc. (TICS Inc.) Project Team developed an online survey and virtual circles were conducted specifically for individuals who self-identified as Indigenous and worked in wildland firefighting and/or fire operations for at least one fire season in Canada.
Funded by Natural Resources Canada – Emergency Management Strategy – Wildland Fire Resilience Initiative, the Giving Voice to Cultural Safety of Indigenous Wildland Firefighters in Canada Project is the first study of its kind! This project provides preliminary data on cultural safety and occupational health and safety that is necessary to improve the understanding of Indigenous perspectives on wildland firefighting and wildland fire operations across what is now called Canada.
Natasha Caverley holds a M.Ed. in Counselling Psychology and PhD in Organizational Studies from the University of Victoria. Natasha is a Canadian Certified Counsellor through the Canadian Counselling & Psychotherapy Association. Dr. Caverley is the President of Turtle Island Consulting Services Inc. in North Saanich, BC. Natasha is a multi-racial Canadian of Algonquin (Whitney and Area), Jamaican, and Irish heritage. Dr. Caverley is the Principal Investigator for the Giving Voice to Cultural Safety of Indigenous Wildland Firefighters in Canada Project.
Joe Gilchrist is a Traditional Fire Keeper in the interior region of BC (Secwepemc and Nlaka’pamux Nations) with over two decades of experience in cultural burning revitalization and wildland fire prevention training. Joe is a Traditional Fire Keeper and Peer Reviewer for the Giving Voice to Cultural Safety of Indigenous Wildland Firefighters in Canada Project. Joe is a member of the Salish Fire Keepers in British Columbia.
Amy Cardinal Christianson is a Métis woman from Treaty 8 territory, currently living in Treaty 6, and a Fire Research Scientist with the Canadian Forest Service—Natural Resources Canada. Dr. Christianson provided subject matter advice and guidance to the TICS Inc. Project Team. Amy is the co-author of the book, “First Nations Wildfire Evacuations: A Guide for Communities and External Agencies” and also co-hosts the Good Fire podcast which looks at Indigenous fire use around the world.