Cultural and Systemic Oppression

Systemic oppression, be it racist, patriarchal, or cultural, can have a strong and negative impact on your life and sense of self. Systemic oppression refers to the mistreatment of people within a specific group, supported and enforced by the society and its institutions. A mental health professional specializing in cultural and systemic oppression will specifically focus on facilitating your journey to understanding your experience with oppression and its influence on your life.

Local experts in Cultural and Systemic Oppression

Rani Gupta (she/her)

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

LCSW

There are many ways generational trauma can manifest in the body and mind. Clients have come to me saying things like: “I don’t know exactly what happened to my parents or grandparents, but I just have a feeling.” “No one wants to talk about what happened, but it’s so obvious something happened.” I work with clients to move from confusion and overwhelm to compassion, knowledge, and understanding of the body’s wisdom.

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Sam Skye (he/him)

Licensed Professional Counselor

ATR, LPC

My work with clients often explores the impacts of oppression on mental health. Activism and art making focused on making and envisioning change can be part of our healing process.

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Ajay Dheer (He/They)

Marriage and Family Therapist Associate

M.S. Marriage and Family Therapy

In my graduate education, I have both taken and taught classes on racism and systemic oppression. In my clinical practice, I see systemic oppression to be more then race; it also includes gender, sexuality, ethical non-monogamy, ability, citizenship, etc. Much of my experience working with cultural oppression include the manifestations of anxiety and depression.

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Lolo Halman (he/him)

Somatic Practitioner

M.A., Diploma of Process Work

I have engaged in social movement work of different types for most of the last decade, with a specific focus on transformative justice and how to heal in relationship. Coming from several privileged identities, I have done significant work to deeply transform how that socialized training shows up and how to support others to build this awareness as well.

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Becca Flatt (She/Her)

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

MSW, LCSW

I have researched a wide verity of resources pertaining to the oppression faced by Black, African American, Latino, and Chicano communities. My clinical conceptualization of the oppression facing these communities comes from a Black feminist/ Chicana feminist lens. It can help significantly to have someone who has walked a mile in the same type of shoes.

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Joaquin Lopez (he/him)

Licensed Professional Counselor

M.S.

Systems of oppression permeate every moment of our lives. Racism, sexism, and classism are few of the many systems of oppression that have been part of our story whether we are aware of it or not. Understanding how oppression has affected my personal being, I am able to work with clients to create a safe authentic space to honor their whole experience, and see them for who they are.

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caroline sabi (she/her)

Licensed Professional Counselor

LPC

I have lived in three different countries and have a deep understanding and respect for cultural diversity.

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River Delogu-Clark (she/her)

Professional Counselor Associate

MA, NCC, CADC I

For the 10 years before going back to grad school, I was a paralegal at a civil rights / employment law firm serving people who had been discriminated against at work or suffered from police brutality. I also wrote 2 bills, one of them later becoming law. Over the course of these 10 years, deep internal changes, including coming out, led me to want to help people in ways deeper than my role as a paralegal allowed me to, but I am still very much an advocate at heart and in the therapy room.

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Elizabeth Raffer Anderson (She/her)

Licensed Professional Counselor

LPC, NCC, M.A.

As a person who has a bachelor's degree in women's studies, I have a strong foundation on intersectionality and the importance of including social justice in my work.

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Emma Jewell (she/her)

Somatic Practitioner

Radical Aliveness Practitioner & LMT

I approach all personal healing through the lens and awareness of the cultural and systemic impact of someone's experience. I integrate awareness of these systems through research and personal study to meet each individual with more depth and specificity.

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sandeep kumar

Licensed Professional Counselor

As a person of color, I understand the reality of coping with systemic oppression when one is of a cultural, sexual, gender or other minority. I make efforts to be sensitive to how this appears in my clients’ life, including challenging therapeutic modalities that are often conceived by and for those of majority status. I offer a safe space within today’s political climate.

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Pearl Waldorf

Licensed Professional Counselor

I am an assimilated white, Jewish identified cis gendered queer able-bodied woman. The anti-racism work I have been engaged in over the past few years is transforming my spirit, my world view and my lens on the work of relational therapy. Together we can help you ground into your own privileged and subjugated identities with an aim towards more more community and work effectiveness, more relationship satisfaction and deeper enjoyment in your life.

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Rachel Kendall (she/ her)

Licensed Professional Counselor

MS, C7689

Although I am not a person of color, I have taken dedicated time to address and confront my implicit biases to fight against cultural and systemic oppression at it's core: to challenge the mindset of the oppressor, instead of simply sympathizing with the oppressed. One related training I did included 'How to be (Less) Harmful: Training White Helpers to Serve BIPOC clients.' https://www.ar-tic.org

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Jen Yerty (She/They)

Licensed Professional Counselor

LPC, CADC I

'To the privileged, equality feels like oppression.' Oppression takes on many forms in the lives of the oppressed, from financial challenges to negative self-talk, substance use to mental health challenges. Working on eliminating systemic oppression is a focus of my life and therapeutic work with clients.

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Rebeca Rocha (She/Her)

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

PhD, LCSW

I have 6 years of experience working with immigrants and people of color. I have a PhD in Clinical Psychology and Culture, and I am knowledgeable about issues of systemic oppression. Having come to the U.S. as an immigrant from Brazil myself, I have a deep understanding of the challenges of adjusting to a new country or being part of a historically marginalized group.

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Vy Pham (she/her)

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

LCSW

As a long time participant in mental health and social services myself, I understand firsthand the needs and systemic shortfalls that people marginalized by dominant culture face when trying to access tailored and anti-oppressive mental health care. I’m passionate about changing this narrative and landscape, and welcome these conversations into the therapeutic space. Let’s talk about the trauma of all the “isms” (racism, sexism, ableism, classism, colonialism, imperialism, capitalism, etc).

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Heather Simpson (she/her)

Marriage and Family Therapist Associate

MA MFT Associate

Navigating cultural and systemic oppression has been a lifelong journey. it's important that I share the knowledge that I have cultivated with others. As a Black queer woman, living in marginalized spaces, I am able to understand systemic oppression from different lenses. With coursework stemming from women’s and gender studies, to philosophy to psychology I built a foundation of understanding to help clients acknowledge how systems of oppression operate In their lives snd create change.

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Larissa Kaul

Somatic Practitioner

I have over a decade of experience in studying social justice theory and participating in social movements. I have engaged in many community organizing efforts throughout the years and taught social justice workshops centered on issues around race, gender, sexuality, class, ability, and others.

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Danette Gillespie-Otto

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Prior to becoming a psychotherapist, I received training as a facilitator on issues of diversity and systemic oppression. Thus, my clinical lens is honed to not only recognize our individual and family experiences, but our group identity traumas as well. In therapy, we work with both your unique personal experience and your group identity experience.

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Miranda York

Licensed Marriage Family Therapist

I enjoy working with historical and ancestral trauma and consider the impact of the cultural, social, and political context of your life and the lives of your parents and grandparents. This has an influence on all of us, and I believe it's important not to just look at the nuclear family as an isolated, apolitical unit with singular influence on our psychology, but to consider the broader context

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Heather Asaadi (she/her)

Licensed Professional Counselor

LPC

I think it is important to explore how your identity and relational patterns are impacted by different systems: family, culture, society, & oppression. These systems can play a significant role in our mental health.

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Erika Nelson (she/her)

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

LCSW

Unlearning harmful internalized patterns relearning different patterns is one of the most important tasks one can pursue to create transformation for ourselves and our world. I have worked for years with communities actively harmed by systems of oppression and am actively involved in personal and community development for healing and changing these systems. I work primarily with those socialized as white to support the lifelong work of unpacking how we perpetuate the harm caused to us by this.

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Camillia de la Garza Thompson (she/her)

Licensed Professional Counselor

MA, LPC, CMA

Psychological theories and practices have historically perpetuated the cultural and systemic oppression of marginalized identities. I offer a safe space to challenge these inherited stories to support your being as your are an identity that is truly authentic to who you are.

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Neil Panchmatia (he/they)

Licensed Professional Counselor

MS, NCC, Licensed Professional Counselor

As a therapist and individual, I am keenly aware of the challenges of today’s sociocultural environment in our country and strive to do therapy that meets the unique needs and challenges of my clients – from a place of cultural humility and understanding of my own intersections of privilege/marginalization. Therapy is your place to heal, thrive and rebuild your resources to continue living.

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Vedalia Zellers (she/they)

Clinical Social Work Associate

MSW, CSWA

Our unjust society affects people’s mental health on a daily basis. Depending on your identities, you may be coping with historical trauma, separation from family, unequal access to resources, negative judgments and assumptions from others, fewer opportunities, social exclusion, threats to your safety, hopelessness in the face of global injustice, and much more. In therapy, I'll invite you to bring in issues of any size. There's room to acknowledge and explore the complexity of your reality.

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Desiree Guzman

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

My graduate program concentrated on incorporating cultural competence in my work with individuals. We examined the effects of ongoing systemic oppression as well as how the dominant narratives effect our sense of person hood. There are multiple realities within a sociopolitical and cultural context that are defined by race, gender, as well economic status.

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