Social Justice Discussion Club
The Social Justice Discussion Club (SJDC) seeks to engage residents, fellows, and faculty across disciplines in conversation about social justice issues to learn, reflect, and build skills for promoting equity as physicians. Through timely popular multimedia sources including podcasts, longform essays, books, and films, SJDC provides a dedicated space for exploring modern issues in a historical context and through a multidisciplinary lens. The sessions explore issues of race, bias and prejudice, privilege, and community activism for the most vulnerable populations.
sessions in 2020-2021
organizations that received donations from SJDC
multi-disciplinary attendees in 2020-2021
Who We Are
We are Sojung and Leanne, working with Drs. Bianca Argueza and Rosny Daniel of the Health Equity and Racial (HEAR) Justice Pathway, and Dr. Archna Eniasivam and Dr. Laura Rubinos, in the UCSF Department of Pediatrics.
The start of this group: We realized that our bookshelves and open tabs looked remarkably similar, and we both loved reading non-fiction books, watching documentaries and listening to podcasts on history, economics, and social justice topics. We had decided to start a book club amongst friends when, serendipitously, we had the opportunity to work on establishing a space as part of the multidisciplinary HEAR Justice program with a similar goal of building robust open and intentional discussions on a variety of social issues.
One of the goals of the Social Justice Discussion Club is to create an open community space where we can all feel comfortable asking tough questions, sharing opinions (whether or not we think that opinion is or is not the popular or majority one), grappling with different viewpoints and being open to learning and hearing each other out in a respectful manner.
Mission and Vision
SJDC seeks to engage members of the UCSF healthcare community across disciplines in conversation about social justice issues to learn, reflect, and build skills for promoting equity as healthcare providers. Through timely popular multimedia sources including podcasts, longform essays, books, and film, the SJDC provides a dedicated space for exploring modern issues in a historical context and through a multidisciplinary lens. We will explore issues of race, bias and prejudice, privilege, and community activism for the most vulnerable populations.
How It Works
We will be hosting a discussion every other month. Some meetings will also include a discussion with experts on the topic who will be able to provide more context to the discussion for a few minutes at the beginning of the meeting.
If you are interested in receiving information about the group, please sign up here. You will receive information about the media that the SJDC will be discussing with appropriate time for preparation (i.e. books may be announced with more leading time than a podcast), as well as details about the meetings themselves.
We are looking forward to learning more about organizations championing social justice issues in our area and leveraging our small but collective financial power to encourage action through thoughtful giving practices. In order to reserve your spot, we request a small fee of $5 that you can venmo beforehand. Please note: At the end of the meeting, we will group our participant reservation contributions to donate to an organization doing important work on that subject in our local community.
Once you have made your reservation, you will then receive separate, meeting-specific communication to receive details about the discussion topic, the event details, and the post-event summary email.
Session 1 - Homelessness
Book: Evicted by Matthew Desmond
- "In Evicted, Princeton sociologist and MacArthur “Genius” Matthew Desmond follows eight families in Milwaukee as they each struggle to keep a roof over their heads. Hailed as “wrenching and revelatory” (The Nation), “vivid and unsettling” (New York Review of Books), Evicted transforms our understanding of poverty and economic exploitation while providing fresh ideas for solving one of twenty-first-century America’s most devastating problems. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible".
- 'Hospital Investments in Housing—Banner of Change or Red Flag?' JAMA Internal Medicine, by Gondi et al (2020)
- 'Housing First, Consumer Choice, and Harm Reduction for Homeless Individuals With a Dual Diagnosis' American Journal of Public Health, by Tsemberis et al (2004)
- San Francisco Chronicle’s SF Homeless Project
- Historical context about SF housing by KQED
- Theo: Homeless at age 7 in the San Francisco Chronicle (https://sfchronicle.com/projects/2020/theo/)
- Coalition on Homeless is an activist group with the mission to create permanent solutions to homelessness, while working to protect the human rights of those forced to remain on the streets
- Project Homeless Connect
- Homeless Prenatal Program (many mothers who deliver at SFGH are discharged to their Jelani House)
- Epiphany Center (residential treatment program with mothers struggling with substance use disorder - provides comprehensive services for both mother and baby - also one of the centers to which many SFGH patients are discharged
- Thank you to the participants from last Monday for being a part of the $225 donation to Larkin Street Youth Services:
Session 2 - Immigration
Resources on Immigration:
- “The Out Crowd” (This American Life, 2020 Pulitzer Prize for audio reporting)
- “At the Mercy of the Courts” (NPR)
- Asylum Officers’ Union Says Trump Migration Policy ‘Abandons’ American Tradition by Mihir Zaveri (New York Times)
- Supreme Court Revives ‘Remain in Mexico’ Policy for Asylum Seekers by Adam Liptak and Zolan Kanno-Youngs (New York Times)
- Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) UCSF Health and Human Rights Initiative
- Catholic Charities Center for Immigration Legal and Support Services
- American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Immigrant Health Task Force
- Catholic Charities Center for Immigration Legal and Support Services Volunteer Opportunities include: mentorship program, translating and interpreting services, resource research, and helping individuals write their stories (PDF attached)
- Volunteer with the UCSF Human Rights Cooperative (HRC), which is a student-run organization that aims to provide forensic documentation of the physical and psychological manifestations of torture and ill-treatment experienced by individuals applying for asylum in the United States. The organization trains clinicians on how to perform forensic evaluations and thus help build a network of providers in the Bay Area. https://humanrights.ucsf.edu/hrc
- Thank you to the participants from Tuesday’s session for being a part of the $260 donation to Catholic Charities Center for Immigration Legal & Support Services.
Session 3 - Criminal Justice Reform
Resources for Criminal Justice Reform:
- Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr.
- The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
- Biased: Uncovering the hidden prejudice that shapes what we see, think, and do by Jennifer Eberhardt -- also a recent interview w her via Palo Alto Reads
- Wennerstrom A, Reilly B, Sugarman M, Henderson N, Niyogi A. Promoting Health Equity and Criminal Justice Reform: The Louisiana Experience. Am J Public Health. 2020 Jan;110(S1):S39-S40.
- Professor James Forman Jr. has created a teaching guide with supplementary materials to accompany the book
- The Daily-- “Who Replaces Me?” A Black police officer in Flint, Mich., reflects on what it now means to be part of the force in his hometown
- TED playlist-- “Criminal Justice Reform Now” includes 5 talks by Salil Dudani, Bryan Stevenson (of EJI, below), Marlon Peterson, Ethan Nadelmann, Melvin Russell
- Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) has a compelling documentary following Bryan Stevenson’s indictment of the U.S. criminal justice system for its role in codifying modern systemic racism.
- The Ella Baker Center for Human Rights is named after a brilliant, Black hero of the civil rights Freedom Movement who inspired and guided emerging leaders. The Center, based in Oakland, has formed unlikely coalitions and won positive change that breaks the cycle of disinvestment and incarceration in communities of color.
- Legal Services for Prisoners with Children (LSPC) is one of the first organizations in the country that was formed to support all incarcerated and formerly incarcerated people and their families.
- The Criminal Justice Program of the ACLU of Northern California seeks to dramatically reduce incarceration, criminalization, and police abuse by ending unjust and oppressive laws, policies, and practices that target and disproportionately harm Black, Brown, and other marginalized communities.
Thank you to the participants of the session on Criminal Justice Reform for being a part of the $90 donation to The Transitions Clinic Network-- a national network of medical homes for individuals with chronic health conditions recently released from incarceration. Founded on the idea that the people closest to the problem are also closest to the solution, each clinic that adopts the TCN program employs a community health worker (CHW) with a history of incarceration as part of the clinical team.
Session 4 - Disability through a Social Justice Lens
Resources for Disability Visibility:
- Skin, Tooth, and Bone: The Basis of Movement is Our People by Sins
- A Disability Justice Primer “offering concrete suggestions for moving beyond the socialization of ableism”
- Disability Visibility by Alice Wong
- “activist Alice Wong brings together this urgent, galvanizing collection of contemporary essays by disabled people.”
- Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha
- The Question of David: A Disabled Mother's Journey Through Adoption, Family, and Life by Denise Sherer Jacobson
- “A Former Slur Is Reclaimed, And Listeners Have Mixed Feelings.” via NPR
- “How A Law To Protect Disabled Americans Became Imitated Around The World” via NPR
- I'm not your inspiration, thank you very much”, TED talk by Stella Young
- “How Studying Privilege Systems Can Strengthen Compassion”, TEDxTimberlaneSchools by Peggy McIntosh
- Games (podcast episode 71) via Disability Visibility Project
- “Ta-Nehisi Coates On Words That Don’t Belong to Everyone | We Were Eight Years In Power Book Tour.”
- Jeff Yang on the Hard Work of Allyship (Episode 6) via Come Through with Rebecca Carroll WNYC
Thank you to the participants of the session on Social Justice through a Disability Lens for being a part of the $150 donation to Disability Visibility Project -- a community partnership with StoryCorps and an online community dedicated to creating, sharing and amplifying disability media and culture.
Donation serves as a way for us to act and give collectively to an organization that's doing work within the topic area that we're discussing/ exploring
- November 4, 2021 | 6:30-8:00pm | Reproductive Justice
Facilitating a Session
One of the aims of the Social Justice Discussion Club (SJDC) is to provide an opportunity to develop skills and gain experience in facilitating discussions on social justice issues. We have created resources to help with facilitating sessions and will provide assistance in preparing.
If you are interested in facilitating a session, please sign up here on a social justice topic area you might be interested in facilitating. We will reach out to you regarding determining the timing for the session.
Please note that you do not have to be an expert in the subject area. We will work with you to identify a guest speaker for the session, identify a medium for the session (such as podcast, book, article, song), and develop discussion questions.
Please feel free to contact us with any topic suggestions for future sessions and/or comments regarding improving and/or further expanding the Social Justice Discussion Club (SJDC).