Fighting Racism

 Fighting Racism: Statement, Action Plan, and Resources

A Letter from Our Clinic Director 

 Throughout our history, systemic racism and prejudice have impacted people of color and other marginalized groups. Heinous acts of racial injustice and violence are not new, but public outrage is now extending across our nation. Time and again, leaders craft statements of concern and make calls for reforms, but oppression, violence and prejudice continue.

I acknowledge the impact of privilege and power differentials in our systems and institutions, particularly in areas concerning race. I embrace those speaking out for equity and justice. Yet, seeing something and saying something is not enough; we must do something. Moreover, we should look within ourselves as to why we have not done more before now.

We will not be satisfied with a carefully worded public statement or resource list (one is already on our web page). As we teach our children, important changes begin with small, achievable steps. With this in mind, our clinic staff have committed collectively to the following: 

Action Plan

• Devote one of our upcoming Fridays as the first of a series of trainings that speaks to these complex issues.

• Expand our teacher appreciation program to specifically provide financial support for underfunded and underserved schools.

• Reach out to organizations supporting communities of color to learn more abouthow we can best support their efforts.

• Offer our school in-service trainings pro bono to underserved and underfundedschools on relevant mental health, child development, and parenting topics.

• Develop additional workshops for children and families on self-awareness, empathy, and social responsibility. These life skills are essential in fighting racist attitudes in children and adults.

• Continue our efforts to expand the diversity of our staff through thoughtful hiring practices.

• Foster a culture of inclusion, safety, and respect for all of our staff and clients. Actively solicit feedback as part of our work.

• Offer more training experiences to students of color who want to learn about our work with children and their families.

• Bring awareness of how race and cultural bias affect the validity of our assessment, treatment and other services. Provide training and internal review processes that continue to promote evidence-based, culturally appropriate, assessment, treatment and evidence-based practices.

• In our work with foster children, we must continually be aware of how racial and cultural factors affect our assessment and placement recommendations. We intend to offer trainings for caseworkers and foster parents to help better meet the needs of these children.

• Provide resources for children and families as they navigate these difficult times and have conversations in their homes related to racial justice. See the resources summarized below.

• Share quarterly updates about our progress in implementing the above actions.

Race and Racism Resources: 

Embrace Race: Raising a Generation of Children Who are Thoughtful, Informed and Brave About Race, https://www.embracerace.org/ including their list of Diverse Books for Children https://www.embracerace.org/resources/where-to-find-diverse-childrens-books 

American Psychological Association: We Must Unmute

Are Your Kids Too Young to Talk About Race? Nope. https://www.prettygooddesign.org/ 

CNN and Sesame Street: Town Hall on Racism for Kids and Parents, https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/06/us/cnn-sesame-street-town-hall-racism-trnd/index.html

https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/06/app-news-section/cnn-sesame-street-race-town-hall-app-june-6-2020-app/index.html

Barack Obama’s High School Commencement Speech 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/16/us/obama-graduation-speech-transcript.html 

Video explaining possibility of racial profiling by police to Black children: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coryt8IZ-DE 

How White Parents Can Talk to Their Kids About Race, https://www.npr.org/2020/06/03/869071246/how-white-parents-can-talk-to-their-kids-about-race 

The 1619 Project Podcast, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/23/podcasts/1619-podcast.html 

For a thorough list of resources, please also go to https://www.nacac.org/2020/06/08/statement-and-resources-from-nacac-about-fighting-racism/