oopapers Examining the Current State of the Profession Paper

Topics: Sociology, Multiculturalism, Heteronormativity Pages: 5 (1013 words) Published: January 22, 2015

Examining the Current State of the Profession Paper
July 9, 14

Examining the Current State of the Profession Paper
Derald (2013) stated, “The adage “counselor or therapist, know thyself” is the basic building block to cultural competence in the helping professions.” (P.6) Part of connecting with clients includes the separation and awareness of the helping professional versus the other person. The helping profession has not always embraced the awareness of self in regards to culture. To be culturally competent the helping professional should conceptualize the issue with the understanding of the cultural background of their client. In this paper I will summarize significant historical changes in society that influenced cultural counseling, discuss the changes in worldview, culture, ethnicity, prejudice, and privilege. Furthermore, I will examine contemporary issues, such as the implications of a more diverse society, the effects of discrimination, and the availability of services. With this in mind I will explain why cultural and linguistic standards for services are important in organizations today.

Over the past century society has had many revelations about social justice and integration of multicultural model in counseling. There are numerous events that have impacted the multicultural change in counseling including, civil rights movements, immigration policy, and child labor laws. These policies suggest equal treatment for all cultures. The laws created a divide between different races and this influenced the effectiveness of helping profession. Examining the past from a social learning perspective, I can imagine how society played a huge impact on people’s attitudes. The segregation that existed between African Americans and Caucasian Americans is just one of many influential examples of how social norms impacted interpersonal relations. This carries over to the helping profession because even therapists experienced social learning and the cultural norms create deep inferiority in the client. This creates a setting where the chances of success are low. All the examples mentioned create the same picture of difference rather than similarities creating a separation between those in need and those with the ability to help.

Influential leaders such as Martin Luther King helped change the worldview of racism and discrimination. Bringing social learning back into the situation leaders developed followers with a group of people recognizing and voicing a need and others began to see and understand this. They took action in various areas including, legal actions, and supportive services. Together society became stronger and more able to move thorough major differences. America has evolved into a “melting pot” which increases the need for sensitivity and understanding to each person’s unique background.

In my opinion there will always be discrimination and racism in society due to the lack of knowledge and awareness to needs of a diverse population. Therapists can be one step ahead and develop the awareness of their selves as well as how they relate and help people. With a better understanding of the effect of discrimination as well as how awareness can improve equality. I will mentions a few recent advances in this area. One of the most significant changes would be the election of the first African American President of The United States. This event created a sense of accomplishment in a significant portion of society and continued to show that improvement is possible. It made the idea clear that people can break free of discrimination. The fact that he was elected means the majority of the population chose him and put aside societies idea that this race was inferior. The experience can provide hope in things that some people never thought was an option for them. Another example would be the progressive change in family roles. In current time some fathers choose to stay at home with the...

References: Derald, S. (2013). Counseling the Culturally Diverse: Theory and Practice (6th ed.). : John Wiley & Sons Inc.
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