Psychology and Counselling are fields that have a history of racism and oppression. Much of the research that is used to diagnose and to treat individuals has a history of being white, heteronormative, and cis-male dominated. This research has contributed to systematic racism and oppression.
My professional Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice contains policies and principles of anti-discrimination and respect for the dignity of persons. Beyond these policies and principles, I endeavor to continue to educate myself and to take action on issues of racism and oppression.
I support Black Lives Matter. I acknowledge the continued discrimination and violence faced by Black Individuals, Indigenous Peoples, and other Individuals of Colour living in the place called Canada. I write this knowing I am a white individual with privilege who has failed at times to be an effective and active ally, who is part of the systematic oppression of BIPOC communities and individuals.
Land Acknowledgement and Approach
I acknowledge the ancestral and traditional Indigenous territories of the Blackfoot and the people of Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta which includes the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations, the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The city of Calgary is also home of the Metis Nation of Alberta, Region III.
I endeavor to integrate a Land Back perspective within my practice. This may include a different approach and understand of payment, a focus on client autonomy and client-led sessions, and integrating client feedback into my practice.
If you’d like to educate yourself on racism in Canada and more broadly across North America here are some resources you might want to look at:
The Canadian Association for Neuroscientists has a list of links with information on racism with an emphasis on Canadian resources – https://can-acn.org/anti-racism-resources/
The Canadian Women’s foundation has a list of resources related to Canadian Women –https://canadianwomen.org/blog/ending-anti-black-racism/
NPR has a list of books, films, and podcasts about racism – https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2020/06/06/871023438/this-list-of-books-films-and-podcasts-about-racism-is-a-start-not-a-panacea