The Shrink’s Links: Racial, Class and Discrimination among Psychotherapists

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If you have  thought it was hard to find a therapist, you’re right. A study appearing in the June issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior shows that, among middle-class people who contacted a therapist to schedule an appointment, only 28 percent of whites and 17 percent of blacks received appointment offers. As if that wasn’t bad enough, appointment offer rates for both black and white working-class therapy seekers were an abysmal 8 percent. The study held factors such as insurance and time of appointment steady.

I’ve heard many therapists claim that they would not work with people from some cultural groups out of respect because they do not feel they are culturally competent to treat them. No wonder. If you do not see people different from you and listen to what they have to say, you will not understand them. If you do, you will.

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