Keynotes and Presentation at the 2022 Texas Psychological Association Conference
Hilton Palacio del Rio
San Antonio, TX
Participation at the 2022 Texas Psychological Association Conference.
Keynote: ¿Quiénes somos y de dónde venimos? A Historical Context to Inform Mental Health Services with Latinx Populations
Latinx communities have grown in the past decade, surpassing 60 million in 2019. However, Mexican, Guatemalan, Salvadoran, and Honduran ancestry immigrants have historically been oppressed due to colonialization and modern-day oppression. Latinxs experience multiple stressors affecting their mental health and experience barriers to culturally responsive treatment. Knowing the history of Mexicans, Guatemalans, Salvadorans, and Hondurans before immigration, during immigration, and in the United States is crucial to effectively support their mental health needs. Supporting mental health providers and educators in their understanding of how history, politics, and trauma shape the mental health experiences of Latinx immigrants is essential to give providers the tools to capitalize on the existing strengths and resources of Latinxs. This discussion will address the experiences of Mexican, Guatemalan, Salvadoran, and Honduran communities. The authors will explore the intersecting role of oppression, historical trauma, oppressive policies, and current stressors in the context of mental health considerations.
- Oscar Rojas Perez, PhD
- David Zelaya, PhD
- Nancy Herrera, PhD
How to increase cultural responsiveness in mental health treatment for Latinos: Promotora Programs
As research data points out: “Hispanics are disproportionately impacted by substance use and co-occurring disorders, while barriers such as transportation, lack of health care insurance, stigma, lack of culturally responsive providers, limited culturally responsive treatment programs and language” impede access and contribute to disparities in services. Promotoras—Spanish-speaking volunteer health workers—are making a difference in many Hispanic and Latino communities, particularly in low-income areas in the southwest states. Promotoras (women) are trained to help their neighbors navigate local social services and access resources for education and employment. As trusted advisors, they are welcomed into homes and community centers to talk with their neighbors about reproductive health, nutrition, and parenting to properly manage chronic health conditions such as diabetes and hypertension. Promotoras are also key in promoting mental health wellness and education in Latino communities.
Promotora-delivered mental health interventions can increase care availability, given substantial workforce challenges to meet service needs. Access to culturally and linguistically appropriate behavioral health care is a high-priority need —that promotoras can help address. As members of the communities they serve, Promotoras are highly equipped to build trust and address barriers to seeking care among traditionally underserved communities. Also, Promotoras can reduce the stigma associated with receiving mental health care, which has increased treatment engagement and improved outcomes.
This panel will address the benefits of incorporating Promotoras in mental health treatment for Latino communities. The panel includes four Promotoras who will share their experiences educating and promoting mental health well-being in Latino communities.
- Merida Escobar
- Otila García
- Alberto García
Keynote: Latinx Immigrant Health Alliance (LIHA)
The Latinx Immigrant Health Alliance (LIHA) is a group of Latinx scholars with varied expertise in epidemiological, basic, and intervention research with immigrant populations. LIHA scholars collaborate to advance research, policy, and effective interventions to improve immigrant mental health and inform effective policy. LIHA members will focus on the alliance and share their clinical, advocacy, and research work nationally. For more information about the Latinx Immigrant Health Alliance (LIHA), visit: https://www.latinximmigranthealthalliance.org/
- Germán Cadenas, PhD
- Melanie Domenech Rodríguez, PhD
- Luz Garcini, PhD, MPH
- Alfonso Mercado, PhD
- Oscar Rojas Perez
- Amanda Venta, PhD