A Message to Our Community in This Time of Conflict
Author: Behavioral Health Department
6/3/2020 6:28:42 PM
Behavioral Health is committed to address these impacts through education, treatment, outreach, and advocacy for system change.
We at Behavioral Health, and I personally, mourn the tragic events of the past week and the death of Mr. Floyd. We also recognize that the many years of racism and the multigenerational impacts of trauma in our nation impact individuals, families, and communities in different ways. Behavioral Health is committed to address these impacts through education, treatment, outreach, and advocacy for system change. We recognize our role in helping eliminate health disparities for communities of color and acknowledge that our trauma informed training and policies need to reach further than ever before.
The Behavioral Health Department and our Cultural Competence Committee are dedicated and hard at work, listening to the needs of our clients and families, educating ourselves, and working together to ensure this remains a safe place for all to come and be supported. We will be working collectively with our staff and community partners to look for more ways to support our communities of color and other marginalized populations.
Our communities and nation are experiencing immense trauma. The last week’s events have been triggering for those who have been experiencing racial injustice their whole lives. Many community members are angry, scared, anxious, exhausted, overwhelmed, hurt, and even numb. It is important to honor these feelings and to recognize that everyone responds to trauma differently and at different paces.
We acknowledge that we cannot all share the experiences and resulting reactions felt by individuals and communities of color. We do not presuppose to understand or judge anyone’s reactions and feelings. However, by truly listening, practicing empathy, and holding safe spaces for our community members we can provide some support and solace. By advocating for system change to ensure that racism is recognized as a public and behavioral health concern, we can inform our policy makers on the impact of disparity in access, treatment, and social determinants that lead many of our community members to despair.
Behavioral Health is here for you to help you get through hard times. Visit us online at www.slobehavioralhealth.org and @slobehavioralhealth on Facebook and Instagram or call our access line at 1-800-838-1381 to be connected to services in your area.
Anne Robin, LMFT
Director of San Luis Obispo County Behavioral Health Department