Culturally competent leadership
In recent years a shift in migration patterns in English-speaking countries has increased cultural diversity, and thus the need for a culturally competent child protection response that is sensitive to differences between groups and is equally responsive to real or potential child maltreatment. Culturally competent child protection practice includes workers’ awareness of, and sensitivity towards, their own values and biases and to differences in power between themselves and their clients. This chapter explores the complexities of cultural competence within Child and Family Practice. To be effective, cultural competence needs to operate beyond the level of the individual child protection worker to include agency- and system-wide initiatives. Managers aiming to provide culturally competent leadership need to consider issues in terms of: the individual workers who engage with and provide support to families; organisational factors that facilitate or impede good practice; and policy developments that perpetuate power relations or that promote continuous improvement through inclusive practice with families and communities.