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  • SALON: The Shadows of Xenophobia in Clinical Practice: Therapeutic Approaches to Working with Issues in Relation to Immigration

SALON: The Shadows of Xenophobia in Clinical Practice: Therapeutic Approaches to Working with Issues in Relation to Immigration

  • 08 Mar 2019
  • 5:15 PM - 7:00 PM
  • Winifred Lender's home, 40 Alston Place, Santa Barbara, CA 93108
  • 8


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The Shadows of Xenophobia in Clinical Practice: Therapeutic Approaches to Working with Issues in Relation to Immigration

Oksana Yakushko, Ph.D.

March 8, 2019

This presentation will focus on the impact of xenophobia on experiences of immigrant individuals or individuals who identify with immigrant communities in the U.S. In addition to psychological and social challenges related to common aspects of immigrant transition, this talk will also highlight varied irregular experiences of migration including the undocumented status, being trafficked, or being brought to the U.S. via international business or marriage recruitment firms (i.e., "brain drain" or "mail order bride" businesses). Linguistic and cultural differences, impacting psychotherapy, will be highlighted. Critical psychoanalytic, feminist, and multicultural theories will be used to discuss the complexities of clinical work with immigrants within a broader culture of anti-immigrant prejudice. Cases of working with recent immigrants, including those impacted by "irregular" immigration practices, will be discussed.

Brief Biography:

Dr. Oksana Yakushko is the Chair and faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute. Her book entitled Modern Day Xenophobia  was released by Palgrave in December, 2019. She has written  on xenophobia and issues related to immigration (e.g., human trafficking, immigrant adjustment, immigration and gender). She has also presented on theories of xenophobia for the U.S. Memorial Holocaust Museum (Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.), has been interviewed by top U.S. media outlets and has served as a legal expert witness on cases of xenophobia. She is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, and the recent recipient of the Woman of the Year award from the Section for the Advancement of Women of the Counseling Division, APA. She is a Ukrainian immigrant, and has worked with recent immigrants and refugees from around the globe.

Timed Outline:

5:15-5:30pm – Greet, sign in, and socialize

5:30-5:35pm – Introduction of speaker and opening remarks

5:35-6:45pm – Presentation of topic (following the above description and objectives)

6:45-7:00pm – Q&A/evaluations


1. Analyze varied historical and psychological theories of immigrant adjustment and xenophobia.

2. Assess xenophobia against critical psychological theories in order to use these theories in clinical work with recent immigrants to the U.S.

3. Demonstrate clinical practice strategies in working with recent immigrant, including immigrants who enter the U.S. via "irregular" migration strategies.


Ahmed, S. (2013). Strange encounters: Embodied others in post-coloniality. London, UK: Routledge.

Cacho, L. M. (2012). Social death: Racialized rightlessness and the criminalization of the unprotected. New York: NYU Press.

Taras, R. (2012). Xenophobia and Islamophobia in Europe. Edinburgh University Press

UNHCR. (2009). Protection from xenophobia. http://www.unhcr.org/55cb153f9.pdf

Yakushko, O. (2009a). Human trafficking: A Review for mental health professionals. International Journal for the Advancement of Counselling, 31, 158-167, doi: 10.1007/s10447-009-9075-3. 

Yakushko, O. (2009b). Xenophobia: Understanding the roots and consequences of negative attitudes towards immigrants. The Counseling Psychologist, 37, 36-66.

Yakushko, O.  (2010a). Stress and Coping Strategies in the Lives of Recent Immigrants: A Grounded Theory Model. International Journal for the Advancement of Counselling, 32 (4), 256-273

Yakushko, O.  (2010b). Working through interpreters with limited-English proficiency clients: A phenomenological investigation. Professional Psychology: Research, Theory, and Practice, 41 (5), 449-455.

Yakushko, O. (2018). Modern-day Xenophobia. New York: Palgrave McMillan. 

Yakushko, O. & Blodgett, E. (2018). Immigration. In C. Lee (Ed.). Handbook of MulticulturalCounseling and Psychology. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

CPA is co-sponsoring with Santa Barbara County Psychological Association (SBCPA). The California Psychological Association is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists.  CPA co-sponsored credit is also accepted by the Board of Registered Nursing and the Board of Behavioral Sciences for their licensees. CPA maintains responsibility for this program and its contents.

Important Notice:Those who attend the workshop and complete the CPA evaluation form will receive (1.5) continuing education credits. Please note that APA CE rules require that we give credit only to those who attend the entire workshop. Those arriving more than 15 minutes after the start time or leaving before the workshop is completed will not receive CE credits.

This salon will be held at 40 Alston Place, Santa Barbara, CA 93108.

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