Our President has called for urgent action to address the trauma faced by BAME communities because of the coronavirus pandemic.

David Weaver has urged the Government to put a strategy in place to address these issues, to recognise the role counselling services can play in reaching BAME communities, and to look at culturally appropriate high-quality therapeutic interventions.

He spoke following a Public Health England report that outlined the disparities in the risk and outcomes of COVID-19 and found that BAME people were more at risk of dying from the virus.

David is currently working with us to put together an online event bringing together people from across our professions to discuss what can be done to support BAME communities with the trauma they’re facing,

David said: “BAME people and communities are dying in disproportionate numbers because of this virus. This report recognised what we already knew. While we welcome that this has been acknowledged, the Government now has to take urgent action on this.

“We want to see a strategy that addresses the ongoing trauma that is being faced by BAME communities. There needs to be an urgent conversation about culturally appropriate high-quality therapeutic interventions.

“We need the Government to see the importance of counselling services at this time and the role they can play in reaching these communities.”

David Weaver

David Weaver

David was among a coalition of campaigners, peers, academics and religious leaders who signed an open letter last week calling for the Government to launch a COVID-19 race equality strategy.

Speaking about an online event he’s working with BACP on, he said: “We’ll be bringing people together to discuss these issues and to look at how we might support communities at this time of crisis and what role our professions can play.”

We’re currently campaigning for the Government to maximise the role of counselling and psychotherapy in supporting the nation through the coronavirus crisis. More than 10,000 people have signed our petition and 23 organisations have backed the campaign.

We’re now refreshing our calls to the Government to further reflect the ongoing situation and highlight where targeted support is needed.

We’re calling on the government to work with us to develop a clear action plan to deliver a comprehensive mental health response to the COVID-19 crisis. This should be informed by evidence to ensure resource can be targeted at those communities and people most affected by the disease, especially for BAME communities, families in deprived areas and frontline workers who have no access to mental health support through their employer.

We are a member of the Coalition for Diversity and Inclusion. Its aims include increasing awareness around accessing counselling and the benefits of counselling, particularly in BAME communities, and increasing the number of training and qualified counsellors from BAME backgrounds.