Combating Structural Racism and Inequality

The UCSF Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences is committed to health, equity, and diversity, and stands firmly in solidarity with all members of our community.

Black Study Group

In response to concerns about structural racism and as part of our continued work to advance racial justice in our community, the UCSF Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences established the Black Study Group to gather information about the experiences of Black faculty, staff, and trainees in our department. Thanks to the outstanding leadership of task force co-chairs Michelle Porche, EdD, Christopher Bartley, MD, PhD, and Jacquelyn Word; key input from task force members Markita Mays, LCSW, Ricky Morris, MA, LMFT, Rudy Wilson, MHA, and Joseph Zamaria, PsyD; and the contributions of hundreds of department members in responding to surveys and participating in focus groups, the Black Study Group issued an insightful and comprehensive report to the chair in November 2020.

View/download: Black Study Group Final Report

This report represents the culmination of an effort to engage the entire community and collate responses without editing or prioritizing concerns or recommendations so that department leadership could hear what people—especially our Black colleagues—are feeling and experiencing in our department.

Undoing Anti-Black Racism Working Groups

Following the release of the report and department-wide town hall conversations, department leadership initiated three working groups to develop and support implementation of action plans and recommendations to help us move forward in our efforts to address anti-Black racism and advance racial justice in the department.

The three working groups were:

  1. Faculty recruitment, retention, advancement, and pay equity
  2. Staff hiring, career advancement and growth, and pay equity
  3. Improvements in clinical settings

View: Working Groups Recommendations

These working groups were limited-duration bodies charged with identifying and delivering clear plans for actions steps and guidelines for implementation and evaluation to the department chair and its executive committee. Separately, we are continuing to move forward on the development of a comprehensive and long-term training and consultation plan for the department. We are also working through proposals to revise our division structure at our UCSF campus sites to offer increased leadership opportunities and enhance the cohesion of our academic community. 

Uniting for Change: Addressing Institutional Racism

On June 5, 2020, the department hosted a special town hall meeting to discuss the issue of institutional racism and its effect on our department, our patients, and our communities. This town hall can be viewed below.