Cultural and Linguistic Competence Resources

Cultural and Linguistic Competence


System of care communities strive to eliminate the behavioral health inequities experienced by children, youth, and families. With an emphasis on cultural and linguistic responsiveness, system of care communities strive to ensure that children, youth, and families of all population groups receive services that are respectful, understandable, and appropriate. By understanding the cultural differences that may exist between communities and tailoring approaches to each family’s unique values, beliefs, and customs, system of care communities can be successful in promoting better mental health outcomes for not only the overall local community on a broad scale, but also within each smaller cultural group.

Utilizing the guidance of the National CLAS Standards of the Department of Health and Human Services, Texas System of Care focuses on supporting system of care communities through workforce trainings, policy and procedure reviews, disparity data analysis, and a variety of other technical assistance services. At the state level, the Texas System of Care team works to brings a lens of behavioral health equity to state initiatives in collaboration with state agencies and stakeholders.

Training and Implementation Resources

CLAS Standards

Blueprint for Advancing and Sustaining CLAS Standards. The Blueprint for Advancing and Sustaining CLAS Policy and Practice is an implementation guide for the National CLAS Standards. It explains each standard’s purpose, components, and strategies for implementation. It also offers additional resources to learn more about each standard.

Training Resources on CLAS Standards. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services provides free training for different professionals, including health, mental health, and first responders. All trainings are available on an e-learning platform.


Cultural Formulation Interview

The Cultural Formulation Interview (CFI) provides the opportunity for a clinical storytelling process between the client and the provider where cultural humility centers the understanding of mental health. Community providers can access the slides and recordings from this four session webinar series, where we bring the creators and developers of this tool together to discuss and share insights, resources and recommendations on how to use the principles of the CFI while working with adults, children, adolescents and families.

Session 1: The Value of Person-Centered Cultural Assessment in Clinical Practice with Dr. Roberto Lewis-Fernandez, MD & Dr. Neil Krishan Aggarwal, MD, MBA, MA; Harvard University / New York State Psychiatric Institute

Session 2: The Core Cultural Formulation Interview: Development, Research, and Implementation with Dr. Neil Krishan Aggarwal, MD, MBA, MA & Dr. Roberto Lewis-Fernandez, MD; New York State Psychiatric Institute / Harvard University

Session 3: Using the Cultural Formulation Interview with Children and Adolescents with Dr. Martin LaRoche, PhD; Harvard University. Boston Children's Hospital at Martha Eliot

Session 4: Working with Families with the Cultural Formulation Interview with Dr. Cécile Rousseau, MD.; Professor of Social and Cultural Psychiatry, McGill University, Canada.


Organizational Assessment of CLAS Standards

Texas System of Care will support behavioral health and health organizations in measuring adherence to CLAS Standards from the perspective of staff members. The assessment includes a report outlining organizational strengths and opportunities for improvement.


Policy/Procedure Reviews

To assist in addressing institutional issues that may contribute to behavioral health disparities, Texas System of Care conducts reviews of organizational policies and procedures and recommends changes to better promote equitable services. These reviews take place in organizations both at the community level and at the state level.


Training and Technical Assistance

From reviewing outreach materials to developing organizational policies with a lens for health equity, Texas System of Care communities and state partners receive tailored technical assistance to ensure cultural and linguistic responsiveness.


Clinical Practice

Clinical Applications of Cultural Elements When Working with Hispanic and Latino Populations Trainer’s Guide by the National Hispanic and Latino MHTTC

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