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Ascent CEO Promise on Multiculturalism, Diversity and Inclusion

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Zeig Multiculturalism Diversity Inclusion Promise ImageDirector and Founder of the Milton H. Erickson Foundation Jeffrey K. Zeig recently signed the ASCENT CEO Promise. Over 100 CEOs of corporations and non-profit organizations have signed this commitment, which can be found here.



The promise reads as follows:

“As we face chronic and harmful inequities across the globe, we must work to mitigate tensions around gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, and disabilities. We must promote inclusion and diversity within our organizations and also at the events we produce and attend.
We believe greater inclusion will foster new voices to strengthen our leadership, our businesses, and our world. By working together, we will cultivate meaningful social change”.
The three points in the pledge include:

  1. We will make our workplaces and events open and trusting settings,
  2. We will provide education on barriers to inclusivity, including unconscious bias, and
  3. We will share what we know, what we learn, and what needs improvement.

Today we join the wider business community in this cause to commit to three initial goals:

  1. We will make our workplaces and events open and trusting settings.
    • We will create and maintain workplaces and business events where people feel comfortable and respected and where open conversations about inclusion, diversity, and equal and fair treatment are welcomed. We will strive to motivate and to educate our teams on the business case and best practices for inclusive workplaces and events.
  2. We will provide education on barriers to inclusivity, including unconscious bias.
    • Let us recognize that we all have unconscious biases and work to move beyond them. Education will enable us to minimize potential blind spots when it comes to inclusivity and diversity. We commit to offering education that fosters awareness of unconscious bias within our organizations and companies and at our events.
  3. We will share what we know, what we learn, and what needs improvement.
    • Our organizations and companies will establish inclusion and diversity initiatives. Those that are further along the path will extend a hand, sharing successes and failures through industry channels. At our events, we will be intentional about creating diverse and inclusive panels and speaker programs. We will adopt a zero-tolerance harassment policy so all participants feel safe and welcome. We will ensure that our venues are accessible for people with disabilities.

Brief Therapy 2018 Logo Mental Health Continuing Education

The Milton H. Erickson Foundation will be offering sessions related to the topic of diversity, inclusion, and multicultural understanding at the December Brief Therapy Conference in Burlingame, California.

    • Culturally responsive and ethical practice in psychotherapy has been advanced for nearly 50 years, evolving from the Civil Rights movement for inclusion and eq. Both the APA and ACA have promulgated standards to inform education and training, research, clinical practice, and organizational behavior, however, there continue to be gaps in the application of said standards. This program will address macro and micro levels of multiculturalism and diversity in psychotherapy training and practice, intersecting Dimensions of Personal Identity, holistic health, including spirituality, and terminology relevant to inclusive practices.
  • Joanne Ginter will be presenting a short course discussion on Thursday, December 6th, titled “Building Bridges of Understanding with Religion and Culture Through Intercultural Resiliency.”
    • Due to the changing multicultural landscape of their communities, therapists are having to address greater diversity within client populations, including a broader spectrum of religious and cultural practices. This workshop briefly outlines the historically sticky relationship between psychology and religion then emphasizes ways culture and religion can be integrated into the therapeutic discourse through the promotion of intercultural resiliency. Interculturalism allows for relationship building and learning from each other while taking the therapist deeper than multicultural or cross-cultural communication.
  • Mitra Rashidian will be presenting a short course discussion on Thursday, December 6th, titled “Bridging the Gap Between Clinicians’ Barriers and Effective Communication in Cross-Cultural Sexual Health-Care: Sexuality Taboos, Expression, and Identity.”
    • Human sexuality as a bio-psycho-social phenomenon explores various forms of sexual values, attitudes and expressions. In many cultures, discussion of sexuality is taboo. Our studies indicate that many members of first and second-generation immigrant ethnic families in the USA struggle with repressive sexual attitudes, creating psychological stress and inhibitions. In this workshop, clinicians’ level of comfort, barriers, and attitudes when talking about sexuality will be highlighted, along with useful strategies to provide better engagement with their clients. Additional strategies used to build upon a person’s individual strengths to assist them in overcoming cultural and personal sexual imprints are offered.
  • Laura Brown will be presenting a workshop on Friday, December 7th, titled “Culturally Competent Trauma Practice.”
    • Just as human beings are not generic, so, too, trauma is an event that is affected by and interacts with people’s intersectional identities. This workshop will introduce participants to a mindful model for understanding how to move towards cultural competence in practice with trauma survivors. We will pay particular attention to therapist countertransference/fragility, and to the effects of shame, guilt, privilege, and dominant culture narratives on trauma treatment.
  • Rick Miller will be presenting a workshop on Friday, December 7th, titled “Gay Sons and Their Mothers: The Relational Mystique.”
    • This workshop provides findings regarding mother son dyads, anecdotes from people interviewed, and moving video clips of gay sons and/or mothers, including the experiences of the interviewer. Subjects vary in age, religions, and ethnic backgrounds. Themes include coming out, acceptance or lack thereof, the importance of a good enough mother, dealing with disappointment or trauma, and grief when a mother has passed away.
  • Laura Brown and Elliott Connie will be hosting a Great Conversation on Saturday, December 8th, titled “Increasing Cultural Humility as a Path Toward Competence.”
    • Contemporary therapist need to understand culturally competent practice. Principles of assessment and treatment will be offered. Goals include being able to describe a culturally competent approach, as well as being able to indicate a culturally competent treatment plan.
  • Terry Soo-Hoo will be presenting a speech on Sunday, December 9th, about “Culturally Sensitive Strength-Based Strategic Therapy.”
    • An important key to successful psychotherapy often rests with the ability of the therapist to work within the unique cultural world-view of the client and generating new solutions that fit this cultural context. The Culturally Sensitive Strength-Based Strategic Therapy method was developed to integrate various principles founded by the Mental Research Institute (MRI) and Jay Haley’s Strategic Therapy approach as well as other methods to address these issues. In this workshop, guidelines will be presented for learning the principles of Culturally Sensitive Strength-Based Strategic Therapy.


Register for the Brief Therapy Conference online now!