23 July 2020
…in the face of history, requiring a radical reorientation of our consciousness". (Ibram Kendi 201
The DCP has developed a position paper with the aim of beginning to understand the issues and supporting further discussions on racism and social inequalities in light of the pandemic.
The paper has been developed by the DCP Racial and Social Inequalities Covid Group through a consultative process that looks at how we need to think about and act on barriers to change in social, professional, and institutional contexts.
It outlines an urgent call to action to support, and learn from at-risk communities.
While there has been a national and international focus on the impact of Covid-19 on Black Asian and Minority Ethnic people (BAME) and the possible reasons for this, the DCP group shows that this cannot be separated from the wider issues around stigma, discrimination, and racism.
The paper acknowledges that while every person has been impacted by the pandemic, there is significant inequity in the impact that it has had on individuals and groups of people.
It is aimed at ensuring that recovery and transformation plans will tackle the socio-economic and societal injustices that have led to BAME groups being disproportionately affected by Covid-19 (Public Health England, 2020).
Dr Amra Rao, the group lead for the statement, said:
“The whole purpose of this is to mobilise people in institutions, including our own, to create change.
As psychologists, we need to put our house in order and are calling on all the large institutions to examine their practices and policies, including the NHS, the Police, the government, and mental health services.
We in the BPS seriously need to consider what part we have played in keeping the status quo, what we can do individually and collectively in our roles in organisations and institutions to open our eyes, understand, validate, apologise, forgive and work towards change and being stronger together.”