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Health Equity and Access and Discrimination

Offering recommendations for advancing cultural competency, language access, and sensitivity toward Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

APA submitted a response to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health to their request for information to offer evidence-based comments that explain advancing cultural competencies for the Asian community, make recommendations for implementation and dissemination, and provide psychology-based resources.

Cite this
American Psychological Association. (2021, August 30). Offering recommendations for advancing cultural competency, language access, and sensitivity toward Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. http://www.apaservices.org/advocacy/news/cultural-competency-language-access

People protesting against Asian hate

APA submitted a response to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health (OMH) to their request for information on advancing cultural competency, language access, and sensitivity toward Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI).

In the letter, APA recommended creating best practices that take into account the full range of social and cultural experiences for AAPIs (PDF, 169KB). APA also recommended that OMH understand the potential for trauma and offer trauma-informed care services as well as use care services that are specifically culturally adapted for AAPI communities. Finally, APA recommended that OMH conduct community outreach and community engagement to effectively communicate and disseminate information to AAPIs.

More specifically, APA noted “AAPIs come from diverse backgrounds and national origins. AAPIs are also diverse in terms of immigration and refugee status. Best practices should account for AAPI experiences with both overt and covert discrimination due to these differences. AAPIs also speak a variety of languages and have different needs in terms of language access. Service delivery and best practices should be developed in order to attend to these differences.” 

Furthermore, "many AAPIs migrating to the U.S. have had a deep experience with war or conflict. Many will have long histories of polytrauma .... Trauma-informed services provide a useful mechanism in accounting for and responding to trauma histories.”

For more information, contact Serena Dávila.