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Session 122: Empowering Youth and Families: Anti-Racist Psychotherapy using EMDR Therapy


Race is an important factor which is infrequently discussed yet still plays an important role in the therapist-client dyad. EMDR therapy is a trauma-informed and evidenced-based approach which is effective for PTSD symptoms. Anti-racist psychotherapy is a framework which incorporates all of the above, as well as an understanding of the social, historical, and neurobiological mechanisms which underlie current symptoms of distress and racial trauma. In situations where there are racial differences (or similarities) between the client and professional, the social construction theory of race, and how we respond to it, can either improve the therapeutic alliance or exacerbate therapeutic ruptures. This presentation will explore an anti-racist critique of the historical function of social services in racial contexts, recommendations for conducting EMDR therapy from an anti-racist perspective, strategies for engaging clients of diverse backgrounds in the trauma resolution process, and self-care recommendations for professionals who work with traumatized populations.

  1. Participants will be able to identify social impacts and mental health consequences of anti-Black racism.
  2. Participants will be able to describe 3 key aspects which relate to racial trauma.
  3. Participants will be able to describe memory reconsolidation and the Adaptive Information Processing Model from an Anti-Racist Psychotherapy perspective.


  • David Archer, MSW, MFT

    David Archer, MSW, MFT, is an anti-racist psychotherapist from Montreal, Canada (TiohtiĆ :ke). He is an Approved EMDR consultant, works full time in private practice, and provides consulting services for organizations and other therapists. In addition to being trained as a clinical social worker, he is also a registered couple and family therapist. His philosophies are informed by mindfulness, intersectional feminism, and critical race theory. Mr. Archer is an ally of LGBTQ, Black, Indigenous, and oppressed people of color around the world. He is also the recent author of a book called Anti-Racist Psychotherapy: Confronting Systemic Racism and Healing Racial Trauma.

September 10, 2022
Sat 2:30 PM CDT

Duration 1H 30M

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