While anti-racism remains under the spotlight and we look to create a more diverse world, black and ethnic minority voices are still undervalued in mental health care.
This means there is an underrepresentation in the psychiatry and psychology professions, with recent figures showing just 9.5% of qualified clinical psychologists in the UK are from a BME background and 12.3% of NHS psychotherapists.
The lack of representation has a knock-on effect with people in BME communities facing individual and societal challenges that can affect their access to healthcare and opportunities to seek help.
On a mission to change the narrative, The Black and Minority Ethnics in Psychiatry & Psychology Network [BiPP] are providing a platform to create real and long-lasting change.
Using their megaphone, they are offering registered and prospective ethnic minority mental health professionals to access social, emotional, psychological and developmental support.
They do this by hosting relevant events to tackle inequalities in the profession, such as exploring racial trauma, male mental health, and how to incite transformative action.
The social enterprise also strives to provide guidance on how to access careers in mental health professions as well as education on diversifying the curriculum for trainees.
In addition to this, they believe they can increase exposure to cross-cultural practice and research.
Speaking in their mission statement, the team said: “The statistics, coupled with the widespread inability for mental health service users to access services or practitioners which reflect their own cultural and personal identities, and an overall lack of diversity in academic curriculum, depicts a profession that lacks diversity of thought, opinion and experience.”
They believe that addressing these issues should be a priority, to spark a revolution of care for black and ethnic minority voices.
They added: “Particularly as research has shown that a culturally diverse and reflective workforce can help address the inequalities faced by BME groups in accessing treatment, receiving appropriate care, and reaching equal mental health outcomes.”
We stand with them.
For more info, click here: BiPP Network.