NSCBI

thumb-bicultural-issuesThe NZPsS is committed to developing and promoting biculturalism and cultural diversity in the work that it does. In seeking to achieve its goals and objects the Society actively seeks to encourage policies and practices which reflect New Zealand’s cultural diversity and in particular the spirit and intent of the Treaty of Waitangi. This commitment is reflected in Rule 3 of the Society’ Rules.

The Society has established a National Standing Committee on Bicultural Issues(NSCBI) to advise on appropriate cultural development. In addition the NSCBI contributes to the functioning of the Society, through regular contributions to publications, advice to the Executive and providing advice and expertise in relation to workshops on cultural justice and biculturalism. The NSCBI provides advice and direction to the Executive in relation to the Society’s bicultural commitment.

The National Standing Committee on Bicultural Issues (NSCBI) is made up of two bicultural directors who are members of the NZPsS and upwards of 12-15 psychologists and graduate student volunteers from across the country.

In giving effect to the objects for which the Society is established the Society shall encourage policies and practices that reflect New Zealand’s cultural diversity and shall, in particular, have due regard to the provisions of and to the spirit and intent of, the Treaty of Waitangi.

The key areas of focus outlined in the NSCBI Strategic Plan for 2011-2016 are to:

  • Increase and support Māori participation and development in all areas of psychology
  • Support the recognition and development of psychologies relevant and applicable to Aotearoa
  • Promote bicultural accountability and responsibility within psychology

NSCBI Meetings

NZPsS members are welcome to attend NSCBI meetings.  For more information contact us.

For more information on current work being done by NSCBI see the NSCBI Annual Report for 2013 (PDF).

Quick reference to Guidelines

Guidelines for the Relationship Between NSCBI and the Executive and Staff

These guidelines were prepared in 1998 in order to assist the Society in implementing Rule 3 and to make more explicit what is necessary to develop relationships positively into the future. The guidelines give an intention of how these relationships should best proceed.

1) The relationship is guided by Rule 3:

“In giving effect to the objects for which the Society is established the Society shall encourage policies and practices that reflect New Zealand’s cultural diversity and shall, in particular, have due regard to the provisions of, and to the spirit and intent of, the Treaty of Waitangi.”

2) The NSCBI’s role is to facilitate the implementation of Rule 3, i.e. to assist the Society to discern the provision, spirit and intent of the Treaty of Waitangi.

A number of new and ongoing initiatives are occurring in the Society which are requiring the Society to closely monitor how it does its business. The most important ongoing issue is the implementation of Rule 3. Council and Executive, including the NSCBI representatives, must therefore work closely and co-operatively to this end, in a climate of mutual trust and respect.

NSCBI is not the Society’s Treaty partner. However the NSCBI and the Society (i.e.  Executive, Staff, etc.) are parties to the Society’s bicultural development and as such certain responsibilities follow:

a) Care and protection of NSCBI by the Society

b) Open, honest, respectful and timely communication between parties, including formalised communication processes

c) Consultation on issues that impact on the NSCBI especially those issues related to cultural justice (Currently, such issues include accreditation, the bicultural auditing of Society’s products, the review of the Code of Ethics, professional training, negotiations with the NZ College of Clinical Psychologists, Society conferences, Society structures)

d) The agreement of both parties in decisions of the Executive

e) NSCBI maintaining responsibility for its budget

f) Working together to maintain and monitor reasonable progress in the Society’s bicultural development


Implications of Rule 3: Contributing to the development of a psychology relevant and applicable to Aotearoa in NZPsS publications (prepared by NSCBI)

The Society’s publications are one means by which we as psychologists seek to meet the objectives for which the NZPsS was established. As a consequence these publications should meet the requirements of Rule Three.

For the new edition of the Professional Practice Handbook, the Editors and Executive consulted with NSCBI regarding the most effective way to ensure that the revised edition adequately considered issues of relevance to Rule 3. Our approach was to produce brief guidelines which could be distributed to authors to assist them in the preparation of their chapters. In producing guidelines NSCBI wanted to do more than simply remind authors that the production of this publication was covered by Rule 3. We also wanted to provide some tangible guidance to help authors actually encompass Rule 3 within their chapter revisions. To do this we asked authors to consider a series of questions. The purpose was not to dictate to authors what should and should not to be included, rather to encourage them to explicitly consider how their own culturally determined view of the world may shape what is written.

In addition NSCBI also wanted to emphasise the close relationship between the revised edition and the Code of Ethics for Psychologists Working in Aotearoa/New Zealand – the Principles and Values to which psychologists in Aotearoa should aspire. The Code of Ethics applies to all members of the New Zealand Psychological Society, the New Zealand College of Clinical Psychologists, and all other registered psychologists in respect of their professional and research activity.

The guidelines are specifically directed at those involved in the preparation of chapters for the revised handbook. However, they also have broader applicability, providing a useful framework for those wishing to have their writing and speaking contribute to the development of psychology relevant and applicable to Aotearoa. For that reason we thought they would be useful to publish them here for dissemination to the wider membership.


Guidelines for Authors

In preparing your chapter please note that production of a practice handbook is covered by Rule 3:

In giving effect to the objects for which the Society is established the Society shall encourage policies and practices that reflect New Zealand’s cultural diversity and shall, in particular, have due regard to the provisions of, and to the spirit and intent of, the Treaty of Waitangi.

The Code of Ethics for Psychologists Working in Aotearoa/New Zealand, 2002 incorporates that commitment to Rule 3 in its principles, value statements, and practice implications. The information below outlines the implications of Rule 3 for chapter authors.

Implications of Rule 3 for Chapter Authors
In preparing your contribution, it will be important to think critically about how your own culturally-determined view of the world may be shaping what you choose to write about and what you say. This extends to thinking about the cultural assumptions made by the sources you cite. It is likely that much of the material you draw upon comes from a White, European perspective. Because such a perspective is usually the dominant one in psychology, it passes as the taken-for-granted, unquestioned “normal”, “common-sense” or “objective” way of viewing things. However, that way of viewing things reflects a particular cultural view point and will not necessarily be generalizable to other groups. In researching and writing your contribution, it will be useful to think about whether you are reflecting only the perspective of the culture-defining group or are truly valuing cultural and social diversity. The following questions should be considered in the preparation of your Chapter:

1. To what extent does this material apply to a) Māori; and b) other non-culture defining groups?
2. Are there culturally-bound assumptions underlying your material? What are they and are they appropriate?
3. What alternative assumptions might be appropriate in respect of a) Māori; and b) other non-defining cultural groups? (e.g. assumptions about the nature of family, the role of spirituality, the importance of the individual compared to the group, the nature of the “good life”, informed consent, privacy etc)
4. What alternative approaches logically follow from those alternative assumptions?
5. What is missing from your chapter which might be important for a) Māori; and b) people from other non-culture defining groups?
6. How can the needs and aspirations of a) Māori; and b) other non-cultural defining groups be better addressed in relation to your topic?

The above points will be included in the peer review of your chapter submission. Chapter authors will be expected to demonstrate consideration of the above points in their chapter submissions.

Code of Ethics: Principles and Relevant Value Statements for Chapter Authors to Consider
The Code of Ethics for psychologists working in Aotearoa/New Zealand, 2002 incorporates that commitment to Rule 3 in its principles, value statements, and practice implications. The new handbook will be organised around the Code principles. Below are key points from the Code which will be useful to consider, alongside the points made above, in the preparation of your chapter submission. The Principles and relevant value statements are listed below. Authors are encouraged to be familiar with the specific practice implications which align with the principles and value statements.

Principle 1 Respect for the Dignity of Persons and Peoples.
This principle requires that each person and all peoples are positively valued in their own right, and are shown respect and granted dignity as part of their common humanity. Respect requires sensitivity to cultural and social diversity and recognition that there are differences among persons associated with their culture, nationality, ethnicity, colour, race, religion, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, physical or mental abilities, age, socio-economic status, and/or any other personal characteristic, condition, or status. Such differences are an integral part of the person. In New Zealand, the basis for respect between the indigenous people (tangata whenua – those who are Māori) and others (those who are not Māori) is set out in the Treaty of Waitangi.

Value statements that are relevant include:
1.2 Non-Discrimination:
Psychologists’ recognise that all persons and peoples are entitled to equal benefits from the contributions of psychology.

1.3 Relations Between Māori and Non-Māori:
Psychologists’ practising in New Zealand recognise that the Treaty of Waitangi sets out the basis of respect between Māori and non-Māori in this country.

1.4 Sensitivity to Diversity
Psychologists’ respect diversity, and recognise that a person lives and develops within their social, cultural and community groups.

Principle 2 Responsible Caring
The practice of psychology promotes well-being. In pursuing this goal, psychologists demonstrate an active concern for the welfare of those with whom they work and acknowledge the social and institutional power that structures their role as psychologists. Psychologists have a primary responsibility to protect the welfare of those with whom they work. They recognise that individuals, families, groups, hapu/iwi, or communities, may be in a vulnerable position In New Zealand, the Treaty of Waitangi provides a framework for responsible caring between two peoples, tangata whenua (those who are Māori) and those who are not Māori.

Value statements that are relevant include:
2.1 Promotion of Wellbeing
Psychologists’ recognise that a basic ethical expectation of our discipline is that its activities will benefit members of society or, at the very least, do no harm.

2.2 Competence
Psychologists attain and maintain competence.

Principle 3 Integrity in Relationships
The relationships formed by psychologists in the course of their work embody explicit and mutual expectations of integrity that are vital to the advancement of social justice, scientific knowledge, and to the maint4enance of public confidence in the discipline of psychology. Expectations of professional practice include: respect, accuracy and honesty, openness, maintenance of appropriate boundaries, and avoidance of conflicts of interest. Psychologists will seek to do right in their relationships with others. In New Zealand, the Treaty of Waitangi provides a framework for integrity in relationships between the two peoples, tangata whenua (those who are Māori) and those who are not Māori.

Value statements that are relevant include:
3.2 Personal Values
Psychologists’ will enhance integrity in relationships by recognising, and where relevant, declaring their values and beliefs.

Principle 4 Social Justice and Responsibility to Society
Psychology functions as a discipline to promote the well being of society. In New Zealand, the Treaty of Waitangi is a foundation document of social justice. Psychologists, both as individuals and as a group, have responsibilities to the community and society in general. The principle of Social Justice is about acknowledging psychologists’ position of power and influence in relation to both individuals and groups within communities where the psychologist is involved, and in the broader context. It is about addressing and challenging unjust societal norms and behaviours that disempower people at all levels of interaction.

Value statements that are relevant include:
4.1 Welfare of Society
Psychological knowledge will be increased, and psychology will be practised in such ways as to promote the welfare of society.

4.2 Respect for Society
Psychologists recognise the need to be aware of the structures and customs of the communities in which they work

4.3 Benefit to Society
Psychologists’ strive to ensure that psychological knowledge, when used in the development of social structures and policies, will be used for beneficial purposes.

4.4 Accountability, standards and ethical practice
Psychologists’ strive to ensure the appropriate and relevant use of psychological knowledge, practices and structures, and to avoid their misuse.