The Steve Fund Task Force Report: Adapting and Innovating to Promote Mental Health and Emotional Well-Being of Young People of Color: COVID-19 and Beyond
The Steve Fund Crisis Response Task Force published recommendations on mitigating the mental health risks to students of color caused by COVID-19 and the killing of unarmed Black Americans. The recommendations of the task force, which includes students, mental health experts, and representatives from colleges and universities, are intended to prompt action, investment, and innovation promoting the well-being of young people of color in higher education.
The task force advises that higher education institutions should:
Build Trust Through Racial Trauma-Informed Leadership
Take a Collaborative Approach to Promote Mental Health for Students of Color by having offices such as Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Student Affairs partner with counseling centers
Engage Faculty and Staff to Support Mental Health of Students of Color by incorporating practices to promote inclusion and belonging in classrooms and across the campus, and educating faculty and staff on identifying signs of mental distress.
Treat Student Mental Health as a Priority Area
Leverage Community and External Stakeholders to Promote Mental Health and Emotional Well-Being of Students of Color
In an interview with the Mary Christie Foundation, Steve Fund Senior Medical Director, Dr. Annelle Primm said, “All of the challenges that were brought on by the pandemic really intensified the struggles students of color were already dealing with including being more likely than White students to feel isolated on campus, less likely to feel like they were included, more likely to feel emotionally overwhelmed at college and more likely to report keeping the difficulty of college to themselves.”