“For those of us who are white, the role we find ourselves occupying is that of white supremacy. As practitioners and trainers, we are uniquely positioned to use trauma-informed principles to address historical trauma. 

White People Need to Own Our Discomfort

For those of us who are white, the role we find ourselves occupying is that of white supremacy. In her book, What Does It Mean To Be White?Robin DiAngelo describes white supremacy as:

“…….  not refer(ing) to individual white people per se and their individual intentions, but to a political-economic social system of domination. This system is based on the historical and current accumulation of structural power that privileges, centralizes, and elevates white people as a group…. I do not use it to refer to extreme hate groups. I use the term to capture the pervasiveness, magnitude, and normalcy of white dominance and assumed superiority.”

Read the rest of this dynamic and timely article here.

About the author:

Mary Jo Harwood, LSW, DNCCM, is a Program Coordinator for the Traumatic Stress Institute of Klingberg Family Centers. A significant part of her 30 years as a licensed social worker has been spent supporting the recovery of individuals and communities post-traumatic incidents. She has provided trauma-informed leadership to victim service organizations, mental health providers, and served in the capacity of a therapist, EMDR practitioner, crisis responder, and trainer. Mary Jo directed the Dialogue and Resolution Center, a division of the Center for Victims in Pittsburgh, PA, providing training and coaching that addressed building conflict-competent teams in organizations. She is a member of Mediators Beyond Borders International and has worked in Liberia and South Sudan and consulted with teams in Northern Nigeria and Kenya to address the intersection of trauma and peace-building through the application of conflict and trauma-sensitive programming.