Ethics Week response to post
“One either allows racial inequities to persevere, as a racist, or confronts racial inequities, as an anti-racist.” â€“ Ibram X. Kendi
Ibram Kendi spoke to the Florida Education Association several years ago, discussing his book, How to Be an Antiracist. He introduced the concept of â€œconfronting your biasâ€ and since that time, Iâ€™ve been actively checking mine.
In my practice, I will begin with the suggestion of Fong et al. (2016) to assess my own cultural sensitivity, utilizing one or more of the survey tools they suggested. Next, further following their recommendations, I will do my own research, utilizing information gleaned from the client, their family and their cultural community, as well as discuss the cultural implications of behaviors we will be working on with all relevant stakeholders. Iâ€™ll share the cultural relevance with my team and consult others if we require further information or supervision in maintaining a culturally informed plan of treatment. We will routinely survey the family as well as reflect as a team on any cultural aspects of our treatment of clients and their families. Finally, Iâ€™ll ensure that myself, as well as members of my team are regularly trained on culturally informed concepts and applications in our ABA practice.
Behavior analysts have an especially important obligation to examine and confront biases as they relate to culture. The Ethics Code for Behavior Analysts (2020) has several codes which apply to this skill set. Section 1.07 Cultural Responsiveness and Diversity directly addresses the expectation that a behavior analyst not only inform themselves of culturally relevant information but that they ensure that supervisees and trainees are also able to confront personal biases, become informed of culturally relevant concepts and are able to practice without discrimination. Section 1.08 Nondiscrimination speaks to the expectation that behavior analysts use their training and personal bias knowledge to refrain from allowing their biases to impact service delivery. 1.10 Awareness of Personal Biases and Challenges discusses behavior analysts not allowing personal strife to influence their practice. This is applicable because it reminds us that allowing our personally held beliefs to interfere with our professional practice could potentially become discriminatory.
Kendi, Ibram X. How to Be an Antiracist. New York, NY: One World, 2019.
Fong, Catagnus, R. M., Brodhead, M. T., Quigley, S., & Field, S. (2016). Developing the Cultural Awareness Skills of Behavior Analysts. Behavior Analysis in Practice, 9(1), 84â€“94. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40617-016-0111-6
Behavior Analyst Certification Board. (2020). Ethics code for behavior analysts.