On 25th November, following a similar trainee consultation event in September, stakeholders in the programme came together online to share ideas and discuss anti-racist practice. Stakeholders included supervisors, markers, teachers, selectors, experts by experience, trainees and staff, and we were joined by Dr Nargis Islam, Senior Lecturer and Clinical Tutor, from UEL. Dr Islam facilitated a powerful discussion on Anti-Racism in Clinical Training, including the context of the profession and training community in relation to race and ethnicity, with opportunities for reflection on current training practices and standards of accreditation to work towards inclusivity and anti-racism.
Themes included how discussions around race and culture should not exclude faith, with physical spaces for prayer needing to be considered in workplaces and at universities; that there is a need for this work to be a shared responsibility, not one held by specific (often ethnic minority) members; and that there is a need to interrogate our processes and all key areas of training (placement, research, curriculum) through a lens of anti-racism. We discussed outreach activities, selection procedures and staffing, acknowledging that there is action needed to address structural and systemic racism and improve equity of opportunity and experience for Black, Asian and minority ethnic trainees, future and present.
We reflected on the importance of learning from trainees and junior colleagues as the anti-racist work that needs to be done is constantly changing and evolving.
We also heard from 2nd year trainees Amy Burgess and Hayley Butler, who, along with Corinna Milroy, Sophie Holding and Heather Havlin, recently developed a tool for decolonising the DClinPsy curriculum as part of their Service Improvement Poster Presentation assignment. The trainees reflected on the process of developing the tool, and their aims for it to: promote critical thinking, broaden our cultural lens, promote cultural humility and be a catalyst for the decolonisation of the Lancaster Doctorate in Clinical Psychology curriculum. The trainees are working on publishing the tool and are keen for it to be widely available for all teachers of psychology to apply.
There was feedback from many attending that the space provided a valuable opportunity to ask questions, have discussions and share important information in a reciprocal way. A number of clinical psychologists spoke of how specific advice and guidance on how to tackle the issue of racism within services would be useful and we discussed ways the programme could support stakeholders in services. We hope to set up a peer supervision network for supervisors to support anti-racist activity on placement and embed opportunities to encourage conversations within our processes, including placement visits. The focus of Dr Islam’s presentation on racial trauma within the supervisory relationship provided ideas for supervisor training.
We are committed to action, not just discussion, and intend to post regular updates on our website. This is important work, albeit difficult and painful.
“Just wanted to say thank you again, this is difficult to talk about, it does feel uncomfortable and I have felt very aware of my whiteness today, but I really valued the brave space position and to come together with others to hear and reflect on the talks today – super inspiring”Back to News