AAMFT extends its deepest sympathy to the families and communities of those affected by the recent shootings in El Paso and Dayton. As we reflect on tragedy, we pause to consider the enormous effect violence and bigotry has on the safety, prosperity, and ideals of our beautifully diverse nation. Families are the foundation of our country, and without basic safety and connection, we cannot be strong. We call on our leaders to promote unity and meaningful change to reduce division that has led to acts of terrorism and white supremacy.
We also acknowledge the disturbing trend of misattributing mental health disorders for acts of hate and bigotry. Mental health issues affect many Americans, who are treated with care by capable marriage and family therapists and other mental health professionals. Hate and racism, however, are not disorders; they are choices made to inflict fear and terror into marginalized communities.
Camille Lafleur, chair of the Margins to Center: Cultural Connections Topical Interest Network, says, "Domestic terrorism and hate crimes are a threat to the mental, physical, and spiritual well-being of not just the victims of violence but to all Americans. Now more than ever, we need to be building strong cultural connections that allow for cross cultural healing in addition to growth and acceptance. This can be achieved by learning to value diversity, by remaining open and curious about different cultures, and finally by immersing ourselves in experiential cross cultural opportunities."
Many marriage and family therapists will be helping during times of crisis. To MFTs in Texas and Ohio, we support your efforts to bring healing to hurting communities. Because terrorism has vast systemic influence, we encourage all MFTs to support those who are grieving and healing in your community. The resources below have been created by member MFTs or compiled by AAMFT to help support this process.
President, AAMFT Board of Directors