As Professional Counseling leaders, we too feel, and feel imperfectly. This message to you, our ICA members, colleagues, people of our communities, is a combination of resources and authentic feeling with you and for you.
"With all the stuff that has happened and to see that it is still happening. This was wrong. I am questioning why hasn’t this changed, we have seen far too much of it." -Carolyn Khan, President-Elect
"As a white male, it sadness me. I cannot image how men of color are feeling. I am deeply saddened by it." - Steve Murray, Past President
"Seeing how it has spread through the entire nation. It shows the pain throughout our country that we have not realized. Pain and anger and rage and shock and grief, it is overwhelming." -Nadia Johnson, President Elect-Elect
"I know some messages in our communities narrow the discussion to Black Americans and police. I am also aware that constructions of race and the career roles do not dictate human connection neither divide shared social pain. I pray each of you peace in your own grieving and social justice advocacy processes." -Dr. Kimberly A. Hart, President
We can only imagine the unique pain and heartache each of you may be feeling and struggling with over the complex and compounding violence perpetrated against our fellow citizens, clients, potential clients and their families by some persons hired into law enforcement positions. What we are experiencing is not new, it is complex, interwoven, and systemic. There is no one news stream or social media outlet that will illuminate the scope of our national problem, nor a humane and lasting solution. Dialog, listening, believing, feeling, seeing, caring is needed. We cannot get excited about a single positive action, we cannot rest after seeing a glimpse of what looks like justice.
In our everyday choices, we must remember the skills of our profession: Take the temperature of how you are feeling emotionally; wear authentic curiosity and empathetic listening like face-masks and gloves; sanitize your biases by socially connecting with diverse persons while maintaining physical distancing. Acknowledge the diagnosis of our national inheritance of oppressive Isms. Engage a treatment plan that includes seeking first to understand and last to be understood.
In our efforts, we are sharing a few reminder resources that may aid us along our way (certainly not comprehensive).
Feel. Listen. Listen. Feel. Listen. Share what you are hearing. Share what you are feeling.
Dr. Kimberly A. Hart - ICA President
Carolyn Khan - ICA President-Elect
Nadia Johnson - ICA President Elect-Elect
Steve Murray - ICA Past President