With a goal to guide the planning of French language services, the Réseau du mieux-être francophone du Nord de l’Ontario, the North West LHIN and the North East LHIN collaborated in the development of a series of guiding principles. These principles serve as a Francophone Lens for planning and implementation of services in French.
The Réseau du mieux-être francophone du Nord de l’Ontario - North East LHIN – North West LHIN Guiding Principles in Applying a Francophone Lens
These guiding principles have been developed in recognition that the health system is to be guided by a commitment to equity and respect for diversity in communities and that language and culture play an essential role in the provision of health care services. Our goal is to advance the opportunity for the Francophone population to achieve health and wellness through equitable access to quality health services in French.
- Recognize the essential role of the Franco-Ontarian community in Northern Ontario and encourage the francophone population to take measures and make the necessary efforts to preserve their language and their culture.
- Increase awareness, across health service providers, of the importance of recognizing the needs as well as the cultural and linguistic differences of the Francophone communities they serve. One of the methods to accomplish this is through the capture of the linguistic variable for Francophone clients/patients.
- Ensure that the opportunity to access French language services is clearly communicated, visible, available at all times, easily accessible and equivalent to the quality of services offered in English.
- Ensure that within the broader health system planning, the process includes an evaluation of the FLS status of health services providers, including the Francophone culture and working environment of some HSPs, in order to preserve or enhance the provision of FLS and to mitigate any unintended negative consequences of system change.
- Recognize that members of the linguistic minority may have health literacy needs that are different than those of the majority. We must take this reality into account by fostering the development of French-language health services that are culturally sensitive across all health care sectors.
- Promote the linguistic and cultural vitality of professionals and other Francophone employees offering French-language care and/or health services.
- Encourage the collaboration between stakeholders in the health care system and Francophone community partners in order to identify the health needs of the francophone population and establish planning priorities.