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Ontario Society of Adlerian Psychology

Gemeinschaftsgefuhl ~ Advancing Adlerian Psychology in Ontario Through Social Interest, Sense of Belonging, Community Feeling and Equality

 

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Equality and Social Justice

by Charmaine McIntosh | on January 09, 2021

In our society we see inequality and injustices every day.  It is the responsibility of each individual to promote equality and social justice.

What is Equality?

The Canadian Human Rights Act states, “all individuals should have an opportunity equal with other individuals to make for themselves the lives that they are able and wish to have and to have their needs accommodated, consistent with their duties and obligations as members of society, without being hindered in or prevented from doing so by discriminatory practices based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, family status, genetic characteristics, disability or conviction for an offence for which a pardon has been granted or in respect of which a record suspension has been ordered.”2

What is Social Justice?

There is no one definition.  Lewis et al. as cited in Kennedy and Arthur (2014) defined social justice as a “perspective grounded in the belief that every individual has the right to quality education, appropriate health care services, and equal employment opportunities, regardless of ethnicity, race, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, economic status, and other individual characteris-tics” (p. 188).  Goodman, et al. (2004) writes about training mental health clinicians to participate in social justice work which is seen as “professional action designed to change societal values, structures, policies and practices, such that disadvantaged or marginalized groups gain increased access to tools of self-determination” (p. 795).

The issues of inequality and social injustice permeates our society and connects to our mental health and wellbeing - they matter!  We need to be aware so that we can honour the diversity of people  and take action for equality, social justice and mental wellness.

References

  1. Goodman, L.A., Liang, B., Helms, J.E., Latta, R.E., Sparks, E., & Weintraub, S.R. (2004). Training counseling psychologists as social justice agents: Feminist and multicultural principles in action. The Counseling Psychologist, 32, 793-837. doi: 10.1177/0011000004268802
  2. Government of Canada.  Canadian Human Rights Act R.S.C., 1985,c.H-6.  https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/h-6/FullText.html
  3. Kennedy, B.A. & Arthur, N. (2014).  Social justice and counselling psychology: Recommitment through action, Canadian Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy, 48(3), 186–205.  https://cjc-rcc.ucalgary.ca/article/view/61013





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