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A Message from the Health and Development Research Laboratory:


Traumatic experiences tied to bigotry, as well as the pervasiveness of everyday stressors tied to racism and discrimination, have been shown by our lab and others to be linked to widespread health disparities for minorities. As research scientists, we believe it is critical to shine a bright light on these health disparities in an effort to expose the insidious effects of racism.

We thank the families who have partnered with our lab to generously share both their time and personal stories, and in so doing, allowed us to conduct our work. A common trait among these families is their resilience in the face of adversity. We are routinely humbled by their perseverance and determination despite systemic barriers, overt and covert racism, and a society that is willing to turn a blind eye.

Members of the Health and Development Lab are committed to doing more to bring about much needed change. We pledge to engage in efforts that advance our scientific mission and our vision of a more just and equitable society. Specifically, we will:

  • Continue to conduct high-quality research that examines the toll of social stressors (including discrimination and trauma) on children’s and adults’ mental and physical health;

  • Work with partners at the Center for Family Research to test prevention programs designed to build on the strengths of Black families;

  • Actively communicate our findings with the public through publications and presentations; and

  • Expand our team’s training and professional development in the areas of diversity and cultural awareness.

We look forward to the opportunity to grow and become not just better scientists, but also better citizens.

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