Diversity is a mental myth. The myth being that diversity is something that only impacts smaller groups and therefore a side consideration in all systems of society.
Even if we were to ignore many possible diverse groupings such as older people (18% over 65) and focus on BAME/multi-racial (18%), disability (22%), gender diversity (7%), poverty (20%), neurodivergent (10%) that would mean up to 77% of the population are considered to hold a “diverse” identity (c 60% once normalised).
Clearly diversity is NOT a variation to the norm but rather diversity is the norm.
The implications are huge for society as well as the C&P profession. Although all of these identities are very different they do consist of a common theme in therapy: Does the therapist have a multidimensional worldview of peoples identity both in terms of education/skill and in building the therapeutic relationship? Even with a cursory review of core curriculum the following can be asked.
Theory. Does theory accurately reflect or conflict with these diverse identities development?
Assessment: Do therapists have the knowledge to make assessments and thus competence?
Ethics. Are the ethics robust enough to ensure these groups are not discriminated against?
Knowledge. Do C&P practitioners have experience, skill and background knowledge to work with these groups?
Relationship. Does the theory and training adequately address relationship considerations and differences.
Problems. Does competence working with a particular problem such as Trauma enough for working with these diverse groups?
Diversity is a mental myth. Diversity is not a diverse variation. DIVERSITY is the NORM. It cannot be tagged along, or sidelined. Rather Diversity is CENTRICITY. The center from which everything needs to hang off from. The previous norm was the smaller group with everything tagged alongside it.
The reality is we always knew that there is no such thing as the norm. Core training for C&P is inadequate and we may have discriminated, harmed and on a mass scale without realising it (and thats without considering baseline service quality and access).
BUT that does not mean the old norm is sidelined: it means everyone is part of Diversity. We just change diversity to CENTRICITY.