PEERS Stands Against Division
In light of the recent events in Charlottesville and elsewhere in this country, PEERS has decided to take a public stand against all forms of racism and discrimination.
The United States has a long, sordid history of state-abetted violence and discrimination against minority communities of all different types, including against the mental health community. Violence and hatred affect us all. Discrimination and oppression against one group create a less open and peaceful society for everyone. It is our responsibility as societal stakeholders to champion social inclusion and diversity.
What is irrefutably clear from Charlottesville is that the anguish of America’s past is still very much part of our present. Societal trauma does not disappear overnight. Instead it smolders beneath the surface, passing silently from one generation to the next, boiling over during moments of collective crisis.
Fear and hatred arise from unresolved pain. Perhaps a trauma-informed approach to national discourse and introspection would help assuage many symptoms of our country’s shared suffering – past and present. Only then can we start to heal our imagined divisions and move forward as a people.
Stay woke, stay open, and remember that every action of love and kindness, no matter how small, sends forth ripples of hope.
Maintaining Wellness in Our Current Era
It’s important to remember that taking care of yourself is the first priority for ensuring a healthy, fair society. Without person wellness, there can be no sustainable effort to promote openness and acceptance in our communities.
These are trying times for many of us. News cycle after news cycle conveys genuinely alarming, emotionally draining information. It is easy to become numb and even indifferent to the onslaught of adverse current events.
The first step to overcoming that indifference is self-care. Focus on the wellness basics: prioritize stress-reduction, reach out to trusted friends and family-members, and remember that you know best when it comes to maintaining your own wellness.
Here are some resources that may help you feel empowered:
- Wellness Toolbox (WRAP): A very useful resource that lists common self-empowerment tools from the Wellness Recovery Action Plan. Pick and choose the tools that work best for you!
- Signs You Need to Step Away from the News Cycle (Bustle): A lighthearted but informative guide for having a healthy relationship with the news.
- Guide for Practical Political Organizing (Indivisible): Taking political action can be a form of self-care! This guide from the progressive 501c Indivisible shares several proven strategies for political organizing in your local community.
- The Little Understood Mental-Health Effects of Racial Trauma (Ny Mag): How does racism produce trauma? This article features an interview with Dr. Erlanger Turner, a researcher who studies racial trauma.
- Ten Ways to Fight Hate (Southern Poverty Law Center): Styled as a “community response guide,” this resource focuses on political and social action in your local city, county, or state.
- After Charlottesville, More People Search Google for ‘Psychologist Near Me’(The News and Observer): The title says it all. There’s a lot of fear and anxiety going around.
- A New Emphasis on Mental Health for Cops, Other Officers (USA Today): Law enforcement officers and first responders have very stressful jobs. With all of the hate-related stress these days, it’s important to provide resources to people from all walks of life, especially those whose job it is to keep us safe.