The Traumatic Impact of Racism

The trauma of racism impacts our children’s physical and emotional health. In this episode, we talk with Dr. Roger Harrison, a clinical assistant professor of pediatrics at Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University and a pediatric psychologist in the Division of Behavioral Health at Nemours/Alfred I DuPont Hospital for Children; Dr. Lonna Gordon, the Division Chief of Adolescent Medicine at Nemours Children’s Hospital in Florida. She is board certified in pediatrics, adolescent medicine and obesity medicine; and Cindy Bo, Senior Vice President, Delaware Valley Strategy and Business Development and Interim DRIVE Enterprise Leader.

In this episode, we cover:

  • What is racism and what are the different forms it can take? 
  • Examples of the different types of racism
  • Does racism impact the physical health of minorities? 
  • Racism hurting the emotional health of minorities
  • In other forms of trauma we can see that the impact on the child varies depending on many factors, such as who was responsible for inflicting the trauma and that persons relationship to the child, the child’s age, and the child’s basic temperament. Is the same true for the traumatic impact of racism?
  • Internalized racism
  • Cumulative impact of different types of trauma
  • Are children of color being raised by white parents more vulnerable to the traumatic impacts of racism? 
  • Does the trauma of racism differ depending on the race or ethnicity of the child or person? Model minority?
  • Are non-minority children also impacted negatively by racism?
  • How can we help children of color cope with racism and not be unduly impacted by the trauma?
  • Suggested books and activities

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Music Credit: Michael Ashworth

Image Credit: Kelly Lacy