Session: Treating Parental Incarceration As Childhood Trauma: A Clinical Framework for Anti-Oppressive Practice with Injustice Impacted Populations (Society for Social Work and Research 24th Annual Conference - Reducing Racial and Economic Inequality)

8 Treating Parental Incarceration As Childhood Trauma: A Clinical Framework for Anti-Oppressive Practice with Injustice Impacted Populations

Thursday, January 16, 2020: 1:30 PM-3:00 PM
Marquis BR Salon 12, ML 2 (Marriott Marquis Washington DC)
Cluster: Crime and Criminal Justice (C&CJ)
Anna Morgan-Mullane, DSW, LCSW-R, Children of Promise, NYC, Kirk James, PhD, New York University and Joshua Ware, MSW, New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation
Despite the pervasive impact of mass incarceration, there has been very limited research conducted to explore the effects of parental incarceration on children and the role that anti-black racism has on treatment practice. While the literature finds that parental incarceration is associated with numerous negative effects for children such as educational under-attainment, dropout, and grade failure (Murray & Farrington, 2008; Murray et al., 2012; Phillips et al., 2006), and significant feelings of shame and stigmatization (Manning, 2011), limited research addresses the psychological impact of parental incarceration--inclusive of best practices, and educational training requirements for practitioners working with impacted people. Trauma stemming from intergenerational experiences with the injustice system commonly present psychosocial stressors exhibited by children and adolescents--they range from: depression, anger, isolating and self-harming behaviors, cognitive distortions, and escalated symptoms of physical distress. Therefore, these anti-oppressive clinical modalities become best practices to the treatment of the childhood trauma of parental incarceration just as to other forms of childhood trauma. Through its integration of the micro-level clinical interventions, along with the mezzo and macro level identification of the historical and present-day oppression of parental incarceration, this workshop will take a healing-centered approach to identify the trauma of parental incarceration and best practices in treating children of incarcerated parents. We will cover anti-racist clinical practices for working with children and adolescents impacted by the injustice system. The discussion will include anti-oppressive theories and therapeutic models such as critical consciousness, narrative therapy, relational and attachment based therapies, and trauma-focused evidence-based treatment modalities. The facilitators will also facilitate a discussion on the historical oppression of black families by the injustice system and other complex racist systems of oppression. Furthermore, the workshop will utilize an anti-oppressive lens by contextualizing present-day parental incarceration within the political history of mass incarceration in the United States. As a result of attending this workshop, participants will be able to: 1) Understand historical oppression and mass incarceration through the lens of anti-blackness in clinical practice on a micro, mezzo, and macro level, 2) Identify parental incarceration as a newly recognized form of trauma and the post-traumatic symptoms exhibited by children of incarcerated parents, 3) Speak to the efficacy of evidence-based and evidence-informed treatment models, including Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Trauma Systems Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Relational Therapy and Community Psychiatry as best practices for clinical treatment with children of incarcerated parents, 4) Develop an increased capacity to interrupt the profound impact of mass incarceration on children, families, and communities and identify the skills necessary to target and dismantle anti-blackness in clinical practice, and 5) Demonstrate an understanding of the impact of mass incarceration on clinical services, supervision and social work and mental health education programs.
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