This chapter offers practical utility to help expand rehabilitation counselors’ (RCs) and other mental health professionals’ thinking about the various considerations that underlie a culturally competent social justice approach to rehabilitation counseling practice. Rehabilitation counseling has demonstrated its commitment to the importance of cultural competency in improving the quality and availability of counseling and rehabilitation services to clients from traditionally under represented racial/ethnic groups. The chapter describes the multicultural and social justice counseling competencies (MSJCC), with particular attention directed to the social justice framework and how it may be used to assist in working toward equity in the context of changing demographics in American society. It then explains how individual and group racial, sexual identity, cultural, and identity development may impact the counseling process. The counseling literature recognizes LGBTQ individuals as inclusive under the umbrella of multicultural populations, as well as intersecting with other groups because of multiple identities.
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This book brings to life the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF; World Health Organization, 2001) for rehabilitation counselors. The book presents contemporary information that can be used to educate, guide practice, and provide the foundation for emerging research related to the psychosocial aspects of disability and chronic disease. It provides a powerful and informative resource for students, practitioners, and scholars in developing and reinforcing rehabilitation counseling principles that guide rehabilitation counseling education, practice, and research. The book is organized into five major parts containing 30 chapters. Part I presents the historical perspectives on illness and disability. Part II offers insights into the personal impact of illness and disability on individuals by looking closely at several unique psychosocial life experiences. It discusses various theories of adaptation to disability, the unique experiences faced by women with disabilities, gender differences regarding sexuality, multicultural and family perspectives of disability, and quality of life (QOL) issues for those with disabilities. Part III addresses issues such as involvement, support, and coping of family members (parents, children, spouses, and partners) which includes family caregiving and counseling, to promote optimal medical, physical, mental, emotional, and psychological functioning of the person with a disability. Part IV reflects the growing need for diagnostic, treatment, and preventive interventions, and the coordination of important resources to help persons with chronic illnesses and disabilities achieve optimal levels of independent functioning. It delves on substance use disorders, trauma-related mental health problems among combat veterans, and assistive technology. The final part addresses several contemporary issues faced by persons with chronic illness and disabilities (CIDs) that are relevant to counselors and practice. It discusses newer challenges that these individuals face, including obesity, poor nutrition, poverty, suicide, threat of terrorism, and depression, all of which are on the rise in the United States.