Join Clinical Psychologist Andrew Bell this Sunday for “Racism as Toxic Stress: A Neurobiological Perspective.” Trauma and toxic stress occur when our biological imperative for safety, connectedness and self-regulation is interrupted and undermined.

Racism can be similarly understood as a structural arrangement that selectively and differentially creates conditions of toxic stress among people and communities of color, to the benefit of white people and institutions.
Following a brief description of this trauma lens, participants will explore how it applies to privilege and racism, along with actions and next steps that might be taken to mitigate the toxic stress of racism.

Bell is a licensed clinical psychologist (Ph.D. Columbia University, 2003; M.S. Columbia University, 1994; M.A. New York University, 1989). He has worked in community mental health in many capacities, including as a homeless outreach worker, inpatient psychologist, therapist, ER psychologist, and director of North Central Bronx Hospital’s child psychiatric ER.

In 2005, he co-founded and directed the mental health component of the Safe Schools Successful Students Initiative, which served 12 very high-need Bronx middle and elementary schools. For the past 10 years he served as the Program Director of Children’s Mental Health at Westchester County’s Department of Community Mental Health. His current focus is on promoting trauma-informed systems transformation throughout Westchester County and the mid-Hudson Valley.

He has published peer-reviewed research on dreams, personality disorders, and public health strategies to reduce ER visits and hospitalizations. He received Family Ties’ Champion of Children award in 2014 and was recognized in 2015 by Fordham University’s Children and Families Institute for Research, Support, and Training.