Statement released from the Alliance, the global organization that promotes infant mental health of which we are an affiliate:
The Alliance for the Advancement of Infant Mental Health is outraged by the racial and gun violence in Buffalo, New York and Uvalde, Texas. When racial and gun violence are allowed within our communities' schools, grocery stores, churches and other spaces, the IECMH workforce is significantly impacted. The workforce promotes social-emotional development and early relational health, prevents disorders of infancy and early childhood, intervenes when disorders exist, and advances policy, practice, and research at macro levels. When safety and security are threatened, the workforce’s ability and confidence to do each of these things is seriously threatened.
Presently, the workforce is challenged with holding their own stress, fear, helplessness, and uncertainty right alongside the families they work with. We are meeting, as humans, in our collective grief. There is no right way to respond or “be” after racial and gun violence; what is needed most is a reminder of our shared humanity. The IECMH workforce is well equipped to show up and offer connection, as connection and relationship are at the heart of our guiding principles. So, if you are asking yourself what you can do or should do next, show up for those you support and offer respect, nurturing, understanding, non-judgement, and space for individual needs and experiences; while also seeking those things out for yourself. Start with humanity and connection.
We stand in grief and solidarity with Buffalo, New York, Uvalde, Texas, and everyone who has been impacted by gun violence. The Alliance joins the American Academy of Pediatrics in their call to, “advocate for the strongest possible legislative and regulatory approaches to prevent firearm injuries and deaths.”
The IECMH workforce often finds themselves in the position to advocate on behalf of little ones and their families. Let’s use our skills to advocate for anti-racist gun reform policies that protect our colleagues; the babies, children, & families we serve; and ourselves. Be bold and active in your efforts to prevent future murders due to racism and gun violence. Options for taking action to demand change include the Community Justice Action Fund (CJAF), who build power with and for communities of color to end gun violence or Everytown for Gun Safety, working to promote “common sense” gun control strategies.
FAIMH offers a time for our community to come together - today at 12pm ET via Zoom
FAIMH invites you to join us today at noon Eastern/ 11am Central to a Reflective Space to come together as a community of infant/early childhood mental health professionals. This hour will be a time to feel, share and be with each other. Open to all, RSVP here.