Protocol to Respond to Racial/Political Trauma
[Revised April 21, 2021]
- Communicate ongoing commitment to condemn hatred, bigotry, and racism in all forms.
- Communicate trust in student colleagues to ask for appropriate accommodations.
- Communicate in multiple forums available local and national resources including mental health resources.
- Communicate in multiple forums the availability of administrative excuses for students traumatized by racial, ethnic, or political events.
- Ongoing effort to create safe and inclusive learning environment for all students, which includes ensuring that students asking for accommodations do not suffer retaliation.
Response to A Specific Event
- OME Deans Team becomes aware of traumatic event locally nationally, and internationally
- Sources to inform OME Deans Team: national and local news, contact from individual students, contact from student groups, contact from leaders of the Student Support Network.
- Team gathers virtually or in person within 4-6 hours and formulates response appropriate to the situation. Input sought from other key informants including leaders in the Office of Inclusive Excellence, student leaders, leaders on main campus, and branch campus leaders.
Options Include But Are Not Limited To
- Communication to Students includes details about safe spaces, resources, administrative policies.
- Student leaders activate peer support network to reach out to students who may share an identity with victims targeted for racial or political violence.
- Create Safe Spaces ideally within 1-3 days and communicate location and time to students.
- Call mandatory class meetings.
- Define outreach to vulnerable/traumatized groups: Designate faculty and staff to do outreach based on the individual situation.
- Communicate resources for support in follow up communication.
- Excused absences and extensions: Communicate policy in follow up communication.
- Re-emphasize our common commitment to becoming the best physicians we can be and creating a learning environment where everyone thrives.
Addendum 1: Communication Guidelines for Faculty
[Adapted from UCSF Protocol]
- Do acknowledge the trauma that has occurred
- Do give students space to process and share their views on what is happening/happened
- Do not require that all students cover curricular content in the first few days following national trauma
- Do not use humor to try to alleviate the situation
- Do remind students about resources that are available to them