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ID: HR23-526
Presenting author: Ruod Ariete

Presenting author biography:

Ruod has a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from the University of the Philippines Diliman and is currently taking a Master's in Clinical Psychology at the same institution. With over 6 years of learning and engagement work, Ruod shines their queer light on challenging binary views on drugs and gender.

Integrating Queer-Affirmative Counseling Practice into Harm Reduction Therapy

Ruod Ariete, Divine Love Salvador

Workshop content

Queer Affirmative Counselling Practice, or QACP, is a modified approach in psychotherapeutic practice to incorporate the issues and stressors inherent in living as a part of the LGBTQIA+ community. QACP provides mental health professionals with a lens that places gender and sexuality experiences at the heart of the therapeutic engagement and affirms the struggles experienced by a minority group in a cisgendered, heterosexually constructed world.

This workshop proceeds on the premise that there are opportunities for convergence and integration of the QACP and harm reduction lenses and that doing so can result in more sustainable, effective, and compassionate care for complex social concerns such as problematic drug use.

Learning objectives

Through a combination of exercises, case studies, and lecturettes, the workshop will cover: 1) the philosophical and theoretical foundations of the QACP and harm reduction lenses; 2) points of convergence and integrations of these two approaches in understanding unique concerns related to SOGIE, the nature of drug use, and mental health/wellbeing; and 3) recommendations for an affirmative, non-pathologizing practice.

With more than a decade’s worth of combined experience in LGBTQIA+ clinical work, facilitation, harm reduction practice and advocacy, and lived experience as a community member, the facilitators aim to share and generate knowledge from the group to reach a further understanding of what it's like being part of minority groups, specifically LGBTQIA+ and/or a person who uses drugs, and how, as mental health professionals, we can be affirmative, compassionate, and pragmatic.

Expected outcomes

The facilitators expect that the insights gained from the session will be useful in clinical or counseling work, community engagements, and advocacy efforts for minority groups. All in all, the workshop aims to contribute to destigmatising drug use and LGBTQIA+ by equipping mental health professionals with the skills and mindset to provide affirmative and collaborative care for the community.