In contrast in 2000, the numbers fell down to 69%. The U.S. Census Bureau foresees that racial/ethnic minorities will constitute a numeric majority by the year 2050. However, other private researches made by the Council of National Psychological Associations for the Advancement of Ethnic Minority Interests (2000) anticipate that this demographic transformation will take place sooner. The following 2000 U.S. Census figures will provide us with an overall idea on some minority groups.
The U.S. Census Bureau reported several conclusions on the bases of these statistics. Most importantly, they consider that it is impossible for the mental health clinician not to meet clients who differ in regards to race, ethnicity, and culture. Secondly, what is defined as therapy can vary considerably from the traditional understanding of the mental health professional. And last but not least, mental health workers have to become culturally competent in order to meet the needs of their clients.
Attention to diversity and cultural competence and awareness are of great importance for the U.S. society since it has become increasingly diverse. In this paper I will focus my attention on ethical practice with patience from different cultural, ethnic and racial background. I will also concentrate on some recommendations for the psychological treatment of Mexican-American population.
The American Psychologica...
Guidelines for Providers of Psychological Services to Ethnic, Linguistic and Culturally Diverse Populations (APA, 1993) suggest comprehensible counseling and flexible perspectives for working with such individuals. It is of great importance that each psychologist remains sensitive to diversity issues and possesses general knowledge about the groups that seek mental health treatment. The American Psychological Association Ethics Code (APA, 1992) requires that psychologists are aware of "cultural, individual, and role differences" and "accord appropriate respect to the fundamental rights, dignity, and worth or all people (Principle D: Respect for People's Rights and Dignity, p. 1599)."
Further, the psychologists are instructed by the APA Ethics Code (1992) to acquire the necessary training if he is to work with individuals of diverse background. Having the knowledge about the client's culture will aid the therapist to incorporate into the mental health treatment traditional spiritual and healing customs and will reinforce the partnership between the therapist and the patient. Aviera (2002) reports on multiple occasions when disclosing personal details "helps the Latino client feel that the therapist is a caring and real person (p.18)." Familiarity with one's culture, openness and genuineness of human interactions are of prime significance if the psychologist aims to work effectively with culturally diverse client.
According to the numbers provided by the 2000 U.S. Census over 35 million identify themselves as Hispanic, which approximately makes 13 % of the total U.S. population. The majority 58.5% are of Mexican origin. Barona (2003) reports that "many ancestors of present-day Mexican
Americans resided on this land when national borders were established more than