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ACA Hosts National Day of Racial Healing Social Media Chat

On January 19th, the American Counseling Association will be participating in National Day of Racial Healing by hosting a special Facebook and Twitter chat. Launched in 2017, the National Day of Racial Healing is a time for contemplation and collective action on how we heal from the effects of racism. This day is observed every year on the Tuesday following Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

This social media chat will feature a number of panel experts who will answer questions surrounding topics such as racial trauma, unconscious bias and more. This event will offer critical discussions at a time where addressing our nation’s issues around race has never been more crucial. Be sure to tune in at 11AM EST.


Explore the meaning of the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies in the context of Black Lives Matter, addressing violence against Blacks by law enforcement, Black teens’ perceptions of their own racial identity, and the negative effects of media stereotyping of individuals who are economically disadvantaged.
Brooks, M., & Phipps, G. (Eds.). (2019). Counseling African American clients in the era of Black Lives Matter, police brutality, and media stereotypes [Special issue]. Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, 47(3).

The Journal of Counseling & Development investigates the extent to which perceived everyday discrimination (PED) is associated with depressive symptoms and suggests treatment strategies for individuals who experience PED.
Hayes, L., Pössel, P., & Roane, S. J. (2019). Perceived everyday discrimination and depressive symptoms: Does cognitive style mediate? Journal of Counseling & Development, 97(4), 427–436.

Investigation of 106 counselors’ experiences with identifying and treating race‐based trauma among individuals of color and the relationship between training and treatment. Findings indicate the disparities between health care and the provision of related services.
Hemmings, C., & Evans, A. M. (2018). Identifying and treating race‐based trauma in counseling. Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, 46(1), 20–39. https://doi.org/10.1002/jmcd.12090   

Addressing forms of stress associated with racial discrimination and explore racism from a biopsychosocial model.
Lau, M. Y., & Jenkins, K. (Eds.). (2020). [Collection of articles on stress associated with racism and racial discrimination]. Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, 48(2).

Examination of the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies, including the history of the multicultural and social justice counseling competency movement, counselors of color’s experiences of microaggressions in counseling, multicultural competence in counselor education, and the impact of multicultural counseling competence and social justice counseling research on the counseling field.
Singh, A. A., & Nassar, S. C. (Eds.). (2020). Integrating the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies into practice, research, and advocacy [Special issue]. Journal of Counseling & Development, 98(3).

The authors of this article present a framework of radical healing to help people of color and Indigenous individuals heal from racial trauma.
French, B. H., Lewis, J. A., Mosley, D. V., Adames, H. Y., Chavez-Dueñas, N. Y., Chen, G. A., & Neville, H. A. (2020). Toward a psychological framework of radical healing in communities of color. The Counseling Psychologist, 48(1), 14–46. https://doi.org/10.1177/0011000019843506

This article presents guidelines for clinical intervention in cases of racial trauma and discusses the role of the supervisor, both as it relates to treatment and the process of supervision.
Pieterse, A. L. (2018). Attending to racial trauma in clinical supervision: Enhancing client and supervisee outcomes. The Clinical Supervisor, 37(1), 204–220. https://doi.org/10.1080/07325223.2018.1443304

This article introduces innovative instructional activities for increasing counselors’ knowledge and skills in addressing racial microaggressions.
Malott, K. M., Paone, T. R., Schaefle, S., & Gao, J. (2015). Is it racist? Addressing racial microaggressions in counselor training. Journal of Creativity in Mental Health, 10(3), 386–398. https://doi.org/10.1080/15401383.2014.988312


Counseling individuals of African descent: To work effectively with these clients, counselors must acknowledge the institutionalized racism and race-based oppression that influence clients’ trauma experiences and trauma responses.

The historical roots of racial disparities in the mental health system: Racial concerns, including overt racism at times, were written into the mental health system in ways that are invisible to us now.

Facing the realities of racism: As the United States grapples with the ugly truth of race-related fears, tensions and biases, counselors are being called on to reexamine their roles and responsibilities in addressing the issues.

Five points of discussion for conversations about racial injustice: Counselors can tap into their interpersonal skills to facilitate meaningful dialogue that invites others to engage rather than become defensive.

Race talk and facilitating difficult racial dialogues: The inability to talk about race and racial issues can be a major hindrance to multicultural counseling.

Addressing clients’ prejudices in counseling: Counselors are taught to value the tenets of multicultural awareness and social justice, so how do they respond therapeutically when clients who hold power and privilege in society express biases and prejudices in session?

Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies: Practical applications in counseling: These competencies provide a framework for addressing the constellation of identities that clients and counselors bring to the therapeutic relationship.

Bridging the divide between police and the public: A program involving counselors focuses on strengthening the interpersonal skills of police personnel to foster better relationships within the community.

Addressing learners’ emotional reactions to race-based trainings: To establish a sense of safety and remove impediments to learning, instructors of race-based trainings must anticipate and address reactions ranging from shock and anger to guilt and fear. 

“Get Off My Property”: A Personal Narrative Addressing Violence Against African Americans by Law Enforcement Post–Hurricane Katrina: In this article, Tyra Turner Whittaker describes her personal experiences and her emotions following her father’s encounter with law enforcement after Hurricane Katrina. She also explores interventions used to address racial violence and includes recommendations for both counselors and law enforcement.

A Phenomenological Inquiry Into Counselor of Color Broaching Experiences: This article explores the lived experiences of eight professional counselors of color regarding their broaching behaviors (i.e., their acknowledgement of racial and cultural factors). It introduces four themes as well as implications for counselor practice and training. 

Acculturation, Enculturation, Perceived Racism, and Psychological Symptoms Among Asian American College Students: This article discusses the influence of behavioral and value acculturation and enculturation among Asian Americans.

Addressing Clients' Experiences of Racism: A Model for Clinical Practice: This article provides a four-stage model for addressing clients’ experiences of racism.

African American Historical Trauma: Creating an Inclusive Measure: This article explores how race-based discrimination affects the mental and physical health of African Americans. It discusses how to empirically understand African American historical trauma.  

Assessing the Impact of a Race‐Based Course on Counseling Students: A Quantitative Study: This article examines how participation in a race-based course affects White counseling students. 

Black Men and Racial Microaggressions at Work: This article examines workplace racial microaggressions among 12 Black men working in predominately White organizations. Career counselors may want to proactively assess how racism affects Black men’s social and psychological outcomes as well as their career functioning and success.

Critical Race Theory and Counselor Education Pedagogy: Creating Equitable Training: This article discusses pedagogical strategies to integrate critical race theory into counselor education.

Economic Disadvantage at the Intersections: Contemporary Stereotypes in the Headlines: This article discusses stereotypes and biases about low-income groups at the intersections of race, religion, and immigration status.

Examining the Association Between Racial Identity Attitudes and Coping With Racism‐Related Stress: This article examines the association between racial identity attitudes and coping with racism-related stress among Asian, Black, and Latinx college students.

Human Rights 101: Implications for counselors and the counseling profession
This article discusses why human rights issues are relevant to the counseling profession.

Identifying and Treating Race‐Based Trauma in Counseling: This article discusses how counselors can identify and treat race-based trauma. It also highlights the racial disparities in health care.

Multicultural encounters
Counselors share lessons learned for putting multicultural competence into practical action.

Multiracial Identity, Color‐Blind Racial Ideology, and Discrimination: Professional Counseling Implications: This article explores multiracial identity integration, color-blind racial ideology, and discrimination among multiracial individuals.

Race‐Related Trauma: This issue of the Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development addresses the psychological impact of experiencing microaggressions and race-based trauma and injury.

Racial Discrimination and Health Outcomes Among Racial/Ethnic Minorities: A Meta‐Analytic Review: This article is a meta-analysis of 105 studies on racial discrimination and health outcomes among racial/ethnic minority Americans. 

Racism‐Related Stress, General Life Stress, and Psychological Functioning Among Black American Women: This article explores the general life stress, perceived racism, and psychological functioning among Black American women.

Raising counselors’ awareness of microaggressions: Diverse groups routinely experience microaggressions (i.e., subtle messages that demean, insult, and invalidate a person). This article discusses how cultural awareness and introspection are two tools that can help counselors become aware of and address microaggressions in the counseling relationship.

Relational‐Cultural Theory and Reality Therapy: A Culturally Responsive Integrative Framework: This article proposes integrating relation-cultural theory and reality therapy to provide a culturally responsive approach for diverse clients.

Taking Racism to Heart: Race‐Related Stressors and Cardiovascular Reactivity for Multiracial People: This article examines if two race-related stressors — identity invalidation and discrimination from family — affect cardiovascular reactivity for Black/White multiracial adults.

The Multidimensional Model of Broaching Behavior: This article discusses the multidimensional model of broaching behavior as a way to address multicultural counseling and social justice competence. This model can help counselors broach clients’ racial, ethnic, and cultural concerns to develop strong therapeutic alliances and alleviate distress.

The Use of Relational‐Cultural Theory in Counseling Clients Who Have Traumatic Stress Disorders: This article discusses the use of relational-cultural theory in counseling clients who have traumatic stress disorders rooted in trauma of an interpersonal nature.

What Do the AMCD Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies Mean in the Context of Black Lives Matter?: This article discusses how hypersurveillance, racial violence, and police brutality led to the Black Lives Matter movement. It also explores how the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies can operate as an ethical professional framework in counselor education to increase counselors-in-training’s awareness, knowledge, and skills related to racial violence.


Comprehensive Anti-Racism Resources

NOTE: Amazon is out of stock of many of these – consider ordering online from from Black-owned bookstores.



Former ASGW President and ACA Governing Council Member Diana Hulse partnered with a retired police captain to provide training to LEO (Law Enforcement Officers) with interpersonal communication skills.

Risk assessment training for law enforcement officers can aid in understanding the “why” of a situation.  Greg Moffatt shares how his training as a counselor can help police.