Dr. Stephany Powell, Director of Law Enforcement Training and Survivor Services at the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, joins the Ending Sexploitation podcast to discuss the concept of Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) through the lens of implicit bias.
Dr. Powell explains that Trauma-Informed Care entails a paradigm shift from wondering, “What’s wrong with you?” to “What happened to you?”. She says, “Once we understand ‘What happened to you’, without bias, then that’s when we can really begin our journey alongside our clients to be able to help them become the person that they want to be.”
Dr. Powell explains that the ability to understand people’s trauma and provide them with Trauma-Informed Care is often hindered by our own implicit biases. Implicit biases are the attitudes or stereotypes we unconsciously hold which affect the way we view and treat other people. They are different from explicit biases in that we do not know we have them and they can even be in opposition to our declared beliefs. Dr. Powell emphasizes that everyone has implicit biases. Fortunately, these biases can be gradually unlearned, but in order for this to happen we first have to recognize what our implicit biases are and how they are affecting our attitudes and behaviors.