Racism has frequently been characterized as a virus – one that, despite efforts, continues to spread and plague society.
It’s an infection that hits early in life, with young children experiencing discrimination in elementary schools, daycares, parks, and playgrounds.
Research shows that the consequences are serious, and often they’re long-term.
“Very early on, kids begin to internalize these messages, which can affect mental health and academic success down the road,” explains Dr. Gabriela Livas Stein, associate professor of psychology at UNC Greensboro.
To help counter negative messages and improve outcomes for children of color, Stein has teamed up with UNCG colleagues Dr. Stephanie Irby Coard (Human Development and Family Studies) and Dr. Laura Gonzalez (Teacher Education and Higher Education), along with Wake Forest University’s Dr. Lisa Kiang (Psychology), to create a program that helps parents of color talk with their children about racism and discrimination.
Originally published Jan. 31, 2019.