As Counseling Psychologists oriented toward social justice, we are called upon to commit and recommit ourselves to action in the face of injustice. Recent events in which the violent deaths of African American men, as well as women, were met without legal sanction highlight the systemic issues evidenced by these same judicial outcomes. This pattern of death without liability is inexcusable and is linked to the long history of racism in the United States. We are committed to building a society in which Black people such as Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Tarika Wilson and others have the opportunity to live their lives fully. Therefore, as a community, we support diverse academic, applied, and activist approaches to addressing the underlying issues that result in such tragic and avoidable outcomes.
The Executive Board has approved several actions. The Society of Counseling Psychology will:
- Sponsor a Counseling Psychology blog series for 2015 focused on racism against African Americans.
- Donate to the Ferguson Fund of the United Way of Greater St. Louis to support community development and mental health services.
- Develop a continuing education webinar about counseling psychology approaches to addressing violence towards Black men and communities of color.
- Propose a Major Contribution for The Counseling Psychologist to focus on Counseling Psychologists’ involvement in addressing violence towards Black men and communities of color.
We ask that you continue your work for social justice and consider taking one or more of the following actions:
- Organize a discussion session for graduate students, faculty, and staff across campus to dialogue about the events of the past few months related to the (de-)valuing of Black lives.
- At the National Multicultural Conference and Summit (NMCS) or at the Winter Roundtable, purchase and wear one of the T-shirts we will be selling (“Black Lives Matter”). All proceeds will be donated to the Association of Black Psychologists to support their work in community healing.
- Accept Milo Dodson’s invitation to join the SCP Facebook Group, and share with other SCP members what you are doing in your community or workplace relevant to these events.
We encourage you to attend the two upcoming conferences co-sponsored by SCP: NMCS and the Winter Roundtable. This year’s theme for the Winter Roundtable at Columbia Teachers’ College is #HoodiesUp2015: Breaking Cycles of Violence, Building Alliances, Mobilizing Resources. At NMCS 2015, we encourage you to attend these recently added special sessions:
Wednesday, Jan. 14, 6:30 – 8:00 pm
All Lives Matter: Psychology’s Role in Addressing the Intersection of Law Enforcement Practices and Police-Perpetrated Violence in Communities of Color
Yasser A. Payne, PhD, Daniel E. Dawes, JD, and Jameca Falconer, PhD
Friday, Jan. 16, 7:10 – 9:00 am
Police Brutality and Related Injustices: “Hands Up Don’t Shoot Our Youth Movement,” Film Screening and Discussion
Theodore Burnes, PhD, Ralph L. Crowder III (Filmmaker), Gabrielle Johnson, M.S., & Michael Mobley, PhD
Friday, Jan. 16, 2:25 – 3:15 pm
Lives of Black/African American Males Matter, a conversation among and for Black/African American males only about their reactions to the grand jury decisions in Ferguson and NYC
Carlton E. Green, PhD and Michael Mobley, PhD.
At the 2014 APA Convention last year Terrence Roberts, one of the Little Rock Nine, said, “Instead of despair, I offer you the opportunity to learn as much as you can, develop a strategy and intervention, and move forward confidently with the assurance that whatever you do will, in concert with what others do, be sufficient to alter the course of history.”
Society of Counseling Psychology Executive Board
Michael Mobley, President
Sharon L. Bowman
Traci Edwardson Callandrillo
Katharine Hahn Oh