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Addressing Microaggressions in Helping Professions

About the Course

Microaggressions encompass verbal, behavioral, or environmental slights directed towards others, whether expressed intentionally or unintentionally. These subtle actions convey an underlying hostility or negative attitude based on a dimension of a person's diversity. Even within the helping professions of social service and behavioral health, where a commitment to diversity and equity is paramount, individuals may unknowingly engage in microaggressive behavior.

Often termed 'death by a thousand cuts,' research underscores the profound impact of microaggressions on both adults and children. When directed at individuals receiving services, the consequences can reverberate throughout their lives, reshaping their self-perception and worldview, and posing risks to the case plan and the organizational mission. Directed at a co-worker, microaggressions create a culture of divisiveness, eroding the working environment, jeopardizing service quality, staff retention, and can invite legal exposure..


This workshop unravels the root causes and pervasive impact of microaggressions on coworkers and clients while empowering participants to identify, reduce, and effectively respond to them. Participants will gain insights into strategies aimed at reducing the use of microaggressions in the workplace. By fostering awareness and equipping individuals with actionable strategies, we aim to cultivate inclusive and empathetic workplaces where diversity is genuinely celebrated, transforming both professional environments and personal well-being.

Learning Objectives

- Participants will develop the ability to identify and recognize verbal, behavioral, and environmental microaggressions.

- Participants will recognize and analyze the root causes and pervasive impact of microaggressions on coworkers and clients, fostering a comprehensive understanding of the dynamics involved.

- Participants will demonstrate the use practical strategies to proactively reduce the occurrence of microaggressions in the professional setting, enhancing interpersonal dynamics within the workplace.

- Participants will develop the skills to respond effectively when encountering or witnessing microaggressions, promoting a culture of empathy, respect, and inclusivity in their respective roles.

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