Social Justice and Community Engagement

Four Ways Psychologists Can Participate in Social Change

Psychologists are equipped with skills and expertise that can make them effective social justice advocates, however, few receive training or guidance that enables them to achieve their potential in this area. Dr. Israel offers a blueprint for community engagement, policy advocacy, broad dissemination of psychological knowledge, and teaching social justice. Her inspiring narrative of her journey as a researcher and advocate includes entry into community-based participatory research, training law enforcement on LGBTQ issues, presenting at a Congressional briefing, giving a TED Talk, and participating in White House policy briefings.

Creating Safe Spaces for LGBT People: Research Collaborations with Community Members, Service Providers, and Law Enforcement

Anti-LGBT harassment and violence in public spaces coupled with historical conflict between law enforcement and LGBT communities creates a context in which LGBT people may feel particularly vulnerable. Dr. Israel has conducted a series of community-based research initiatives related to LGBT safety and relationships with law enforcement. The first identified safety as a priority for LGBT community members. The second surveyed LGBT people about their experiences with and perceptions of law enforcement. The third used the survey data to design and evaluate a training for law enforcement on working with LGBT people. Dr. Israel will describe the process and results of these projects, and she will identify directions for future research and action to build productive relationships between law enforcement and LGBT communities.