Social Justice Training in Action: A Counseling Psychologist's Role in a Police-Mental Health Collaborative Serving Disadvantaged Youth
AbstractTraining programs in counseling psychology have endeavored to integrate social justice into their curricula and prepare their graduates to be agents of change in their communities (Goodman et al., 2004). However, there is too often a disconnect between social justice theory and training and how these principles are actualized in the community (Beer, Spanierman, Greene, and Todd, 2012). Using a case study of a counseling psychologist’s role in developing and administering Safety Net, a police-mental health collaborative to reduce youth contact with the juvenile justice system, this paper provides an example of a counseling psychologist engaged in a community collaboration and systems advocacy (Lewis, Arnold, House and Toporek, 2002) as integrated parts of his roles as therapist, consultant, and advocate. The authors present the case as an iterative, step-by-step process which can serve as a practical example for professionals and trainees working to translate theory into practice.
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