Transgender Ban and Minority Stress: Resources from APA Books

On July 26th, the president of the United States announced—via tweet—that “the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.”

On Friday, August 25th, the president directed the Pentagon to implement the ban on new transgender recruits.  Transgender people currently serving in the military would either remain or be removed “at the discretion of the Secretary of Defense,” according to the Wall St. Journal.

After the president’s initial tweet, APA President Antonio Puente, PhD, issued a statement that read, in part:

The American Psychological Association questions the reasoning behind President Trump’s call to bar transgender people from the military. We’ve seen no scientific evidence that allowing transgender people to serve in the armed forces has had an adverse impact on our military readiness or unit cohesion. Therefore, we ask that transgender individuals continue to be allowed to serve their country.

Last August, APA Books published Affirmative Counseling and Psychological Practice With Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Clients, part of our Perspectives on Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity Series.  This book, which draws upon the APA’s Guidelines for Psychological Practice With Transgender and Gender Nonconforming People and is edited by Annalise Singh and lore dickey, aims to provide mental health practitioners with an affirmative approach to treatment with TGNC clients.  Readers can learn how to address the impact of the myriad injustices TGNC people face in everyday life, work with clients’ strengths to enhance their resilience and coping skills, and advocate for their rights as mental health clients, and as people.

You can read an interview with Drs. Sigh and dickey here.

In February, 2017, Sharon Rostosky and Ellen Riggle, professors at the University of Kentucky, sat down for an interview with APA Books’ Development Editor Susan Herman.  In the interview, they discussed the unique stressors that LGBTQ couples face, including the minority stress that results from public debates surrounding anti-LGBTQ laws and public policy.  In their book, Happy Together: Thriving as a Same-Sex Couple in Your Family, Workplace, and Community, they explore ways LGBTQ individuals and couples can work constructively to manage these and other stressors, and lead full, psychologically-healthy lives.

We hope that these books, and resources like them, can serve as some help—however small—to any who may need it in these difficult times.

 

March for Science

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 “APA is proud to be an official partner of the March for Science, set to take place on Saturday April 22, 2017, in Washington D.C. We encourage all psychologists, psychology students and their allies to join this broad, nonpartisan effort to support scientific research and the use of scientific evidence for the public good.” See more on APA’s stance and plans for the Science March and beyond here.

 

With our headquarters in downtown DC, many of us here at the APA and APA Books are excited to be able to participate in this historic event. We asked around for thoughts on the march, and why people felt compelled to attend.

The opinions expressed below are those of the individuals and should not be taken to represent the official views or policies of the American Psychological Association.

“I march because I believe science is key to promoting unity. Being much more than just a set of facts, science is a way of thinking that encourages us to look beyond our ideologies and preconceived notions about ourselves and the world around us. It is through science that we can understand our tendencies toward tribalism, an “us vs. them” mentality that can limit our worldviews. My hope is that science can also help us see beyond the boundaries of our various tribes—whether they are defined by politics, religion, race, nationality, or gender—and unite us as members of the one tribe that encapsulates us all: the human tribe.”—David Becker, Development Editor, APA Books

“[I march] to celebrate why science matters and support scientists in their message that evidence-based facts are vital to inform policy and the general public. I hope the march can encourage our leaders and all Americans to value the importance of scientific information as it affects all of us, regardless of political party.”—Marla Koenigsknecht, Marketing and Publicity Specialist, APA Books

“I plan to participate in the March for Science on April 22. I fully support and defend the dissemination of alternative opinions or interpretations. But as Senator Moynihan told us, we are not entitled to our own facts. Ignoring a problem and demonizing those that raise legitimate concerns are losing propositions. We cannot make America great without education, research, funding, and a respect for truth.”—Chris Kelaher, Acquisitions Editor, APA Books

“I am marching because facts matter.”—Beth Hatch, Development Editor, APA Books

“I’m marching because climate change is one of the most pressing challenges of our time. I believe the only way to meet that challenge is by funding research, listening to scientists, and forming evidence based policies.”—Sarah Fell, Editor, Magination Press

“I grew up with science; I spent days off school and take-your-child-to-work days filling pipette tip trays in my mom’s lab. “Bringing her work home with her” sometimes meant tubes of fruit flies in the dining room. But I don’t march because of my personal connection to science; I march because science is important no matter who you are, and because science should inform policy, not the other way around.”—Katie ten Hagen, Editor, Magination Press

“The idea that listening to scientific research will somehow harm us is a disconcerting one, and not just research that applies to mental health and psychology. I grew up in a very rural area and I’ve seen first-hand the damage that can be done by a disregard for the environment. Shoving science under the rug doesn’t make the facts untrue and I’m concerned that too many people in positions of power are trying to because they see the facts as inconvenient. And so I want to join in to show that there are people who care about these things and that our voices deserve to be a part of the conversation. I’m hoping that it will open up a new dialogue about science that is separate from our political persuasions. I want people to think about the ways that science affects their everyday lives and realize that, as a country, our decision-making should be grounded in facts. We should be funding research and then listening to what the research tells us.”—Jessica Jeffers, Assistant Marketing Manager, APA Books

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From APA Members:
“The science of psychology has been fractured for more than a quarter century.  I march to realign psychology with what should be its common mission, and to elevate it to its rightful place among all sciences.”—Wallace E. Dixon, Jr., Ph.D.

“I am going to the DC March for Science because science is under attack, so Scientists must act. Fake news should be replaced by science news. You can’t make America Great without science.”—Kathleen Y. Haaland, Ph.D., ABPP-CN, Professor

“I am marching because science is fundamentally a search for truth, and truth has been threatened.  Science not only helps keep America great, it makes America—and the world—become better.”—Dr. Paula P. Schnurr