SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF MENTAL HEALTH
Columbia, South Carolina

OFFICE OF THE STATE DIRECTOR OF MENTAL HEALTH

DIRECTIVE NO. 894-09

 

(6-200)

TO:                 All Organizational Components

SUBJECT:     Cultural Competence 

  1. PURPOSE: This directive establishes the policy for the creation and maintenance of culturally and linguistically competent system of care at the South Carolina Department of Mental Health (SCDMH).

  2. POLICY: The Department recognizes that culture is dynamic and that cultural competence must be an ongoing process, believing that valuing individual and group cultural differences is critical to achieving the organizational goals. SCDMH considers cultural competence a necessary part of good clinical services.  Organized under the Division of Community Mental Health Services the Statewide Multi-Cultural Council and Center/Facility Multi-Cultural Committees are charged with the responsibility to advise and guide SCDMH leadership in the creation and maintenance of a linguistically and culturally competent workforce, service divisions, programs, and collaborative endeavors reflective of the diversity of the population served and the community.  Administrative Services, Centers and Facilities will refer to the Departmental Directive No. 839-03 Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services to Consumers who have Limited English Proficiency (LEP), or are Hard of Hearing or Deaf for compliance procedures.

  3.  DEFINITIONS: Cultural Competence is the effective use of social and interpersonal knowledge and skills that demonstrate understanding and appreciation of individual and group differences and similarities. Services are more effective when they are provided within the most meaningful and relevant cultural context for persons served.  Fluid Strategic Plans refer to policies and procedures that are constantly reviewed and updated to ensure they continue to meet changing dynamics of our workforce and services as well as the clients, families and the communities the department serves.

  4. PROCEDURES:  Appointment to the Center/Facility Multi-Cultural Committee
    Each Center and Facility will take responsibility for the establishment, maintenance, and support of a Center/Facility Multi-Cultural Committee.

    A. Center and Facility directors will appoint staff that reflects the racial, ethnic, and cultural demographics of the population they serve.
    B. Center and Facility Multi-Cultural Committees should also include clients, family members and constituents from local community organizations.
    C. The Chair of the Center/Facility Multi-Cultural Committee will also serve as the representative to the Statewide Multi-Cultural Council
    D. The Chair of the Center/Facility Multi-Cultural Committee will assume the responsibility for submitting an annual report to the Council on center/facility compliance with the statewide Multicultural Competence Directive.

    Appointment to the Statewide Multi-Cultural Council

    A. The Division of Community Mental Health Services will take responsibility for the establishment, maintenance, and support of a Statewide Multi-Cultural Council.
    B. The Statewide council should reflect the racial, ethnic, and cultural demographics of the workforce and the population served.
    C. The Statewide council should also include clients, family members and constituents from local community organizations.
    D. Each Center and Facility chair will serve as Center/Facility representative to the Council. 
    E. Division Directors may likewise designate a staff representative to the Council. 
    F. The State Director or designee will appoint all other Council members and may add members as appropriate to assist the Council in carrying out its responsibilities.

  5. RESPONSIBILITIES:

    A. The Statewide Multi-Cultural Council will:

    1. Develop a fluid agency wide strategic plan to ensure that DMH staff and services become and remain a culturally and linguistically competent system of care through the continual development of goals, objectives and action steps.
    2. Submit the plan and updates (as needed) to Governance for approval.
    3. Provide reports to Governance on the progress toward the achievement of a culturally and linguistically competent system of care.
    4. Coordinate with Centers/ Facilities/ Divisions to assure its workforce has access to culturally competent training seminars and workshops that are pertinent and relevant to both the workforce and the diversity of populations served.

    B. Centers and Facilities will:

      1. Develop local plans based on the agency strategic plan; local plans must have a goal(s) and/or objective(s) that are achievable in a fiscal year.
      2. Centers and Facilities will submit local plans to the Council for monitoring.

    C. SCDMH will:

    1. Support that multiculturalism is embedded into all organizational units.
    2. Support that continuous efforts are made to recruit, retain and develop a culturally diverse workforce
    3. Support cultural competency of all staff through mandatory cultural competency training at the onset of employment and annually thereafter to maintain culturally and linguistically competent system of care at the South Carolina Department of Mental Health
    4. Support the monitoring of and dissemination of the level of cultural awareness, knowledge and skills of the SCDMH workforce.
    5. Support and promote the involvement of clients, their families and advocacy groups on the Council and in local center/facility committees.

This is the first directive titled “Cultural Competency”.

 

John H. Magill, State Director 

John H. Magill
State Director of Mental Health     

 

September 15, 2009