Multicultural Counseling and Therapy (MCT)
According to the American Counseling Association (ACA), professional counseling is the process of building relationships with individuals that empower them to accomplish mental health and wellness, education, and career goal (2014)s. It is a collaborative relationship between the counselor and their client. Multicultural counseling (MCT)is therapy that takes into consideration all the individual differences of the client. These differences can be related to ethnicity, sexuality, gender, mental or physical disability, or religion. Today, clients may look much different than they did in past decade. Clients now come from all different walks of life are in needed of therapy. Multicultural Counseling(MCT) broadens the roles that counselors play and expands the repertoire of therapy skills considered helpful and appropriate in counseling (D. W. Sue, 2016). Using MCT, counselors are given a more in depth understanding of how different cultures operate. Counselor will become more knowledgeable about their client’s attitudes and beliefs. For example, the African American community elders believe that mental health is a taboo topic. Counselors must be aware of cultural stigma regarding mental illness when describing conditions and recommending therapies. The MCT will help counselors recognize the potential limitations of evidence-based therapies in order to effectively addressing the needs of clients from various backgrounds. MCT will help close the gap between counselors and client communication. Being able to effectively communicate with a client is a must. However, counselor must be mindful figures of speech and phrases that trigger culturally diverse clients. Even with the recent growth and focus on diversity, counselor who practice in a traditional manner may not be educated in providing services to a multicultural clientele.As a counselor it important to recognize their client’s differences. These differences can be related to how they view their ethnicity, sexuality, gender, religion, mental and physical disability. A culturally competent counselor considers all aspects of a client’s perceptive when selecting treatment approaches. The counselor’s lack of competence in multiculturalism can act as barriers. MCT challenges the counselor to be well diverse. Language is a barrier, often time the biggest challenge for multicultural counseling. This can result in extreme misunderstandings between the parties involved.
American Counseling Association (2014). ACA Code of Ethics. Alexandria, VA: Author.
Sue, D. W., & Sue, D. (2016). Counseling the Culturally Diverse: Theory and Practice, 7th Edition. John Wiley & Sons P&T .