The detrimental impacts of racial inequality affecting our Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) colleagues, service users, families, neighbours, friends and communities are at this time very much magnified and there for us all to see, whether that be through the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 or racism and discrimination, brutally brought back into sharp focus with the killing of George Floyd.
We already have plenty of information to evidence that discrimination and inequalities exist. We know our BAME colleagues are less likely to gain promotions, and our BAME service users are more likely to be subject to Mental Health Act detentions, restraint and seclusions.
Discrimination is complex and multi-faceted, but this is not a reason not to act now to address it. As a specialist mental health provider organisation, every day we seek to meet the needs of people with complex and multi-faceted conditions, we apply trauma informed practice and we do make a difference in doing so. This is no different, not if we apply our passion, our intellect, our experiences, our reflective approach and our wealth of knowledge in trauma informed practice, we can make a positive difference to inequality and discrimination.
Martin Luther King said “In the end we will remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends”. We cannot be silent on this, our silence is complicity. It’s time for us to truly live up to our values, to act and make a change.
We as an organisation are committed to making progress on reducing ethnic inequalities in the mental health system and this is in line with our new values of compassion, inclusion and commitment.