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2014 Report of Results of the 2013 Anti-Racist Multicultural Justice Audit

2014 Report of Results of the 2013 Anti-Racist Multicultural Justice Audit

Of the leadership and staff of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC)

Conducted by the AAPC Board of Directors during the Fall of 2013

Reported to the AAPC membership at the Town Meeting, 2014 AAPC Conference, St. Louis




Summary of the most critical responses to the Racial Justice Survey

  • Respondents saw AAPC as having a strong policy commitment to anti-racist and multicultural competency.
  • Respondents reported significantly less awareness of how AAPC was implementing anti-racist policies and multicultural competencies.
  • Respondents indicated that AAPC was weakest in its commitment to racial/justice in programming areas.
  • Respondents indicated lack of information about how AAPC collects demographic about populations served by members.
  • Respondents indicated a lack of information about capacity building for centers/products &services/membership building in communities of color
  • Respondents were unaware of any processes that supported a explicit racial/justice analysis among staff , Board of Directors and  regional leadership.
  • Respondents indicated a greater need for communication between components of the governance in support of explicit racial justice, language and analysis
  • There were significant differences in how members in different regions assessed the implementation of anti-racist multi-cultural competencies in their region.
  • Surprisingly, 90% of respondents thought that the racial ethnic make-up of the Association reflected the racial/ethnic make up of the country. ( The Association has a 5% ethnic/racial composition)


Report Overview

In 2010, AAPC adopted the Anti-Racist Multicultural Competencies committing itself to becoming "an anti-racist and multiculturally competent organization." To assess the progress we are making in living out racial/ethnic justice on all levels of the organization, the Board of Directors developed the Anti-Racist Multicultural Justice Audit Form for all volunteer leaders and the staff of AAPC.

The form assessed our progress in four content areas: a) internal operations, b) programming, c) communications, and d) the specific 2010 anti-racist multicultural competencies. It consisted of a total of 23 questions in these areas.

The audit was sent to 185 leaders and staff via Survey Monkey. 64 or 35 % participated.

The audit consisted of a total of 23 questions in these areas. Participants could choose: yes, some, don't know, or none as responses to each question.

The overall average responses were: 39 % yes, 34 % some, 6 % none, and 21 % don't know.

Leaders gave the most positive responses to questions that asked more broadly about living out commitments to racial/ethnic justice in the Internal Operations and the Anti-RacistMulticultural Competencies areas.

More concrete items in the area of Programming received the highest none or don't know responses, for instance, for "Capacity-building for centers/products & services/membership   building   in   communities   of   color,"   32   (53.33   %),   and   "Collect demographic data about populations served," 43 (71.67 %); other specific high none/don't know responses were given for "analyzing training, certification, and accreditation standards may reflect racism and monoculturalism" in the Anti-Racist Multicultural Competencies area; and for "racially/ethnically diverse staff" in Internal Operations. These responses point the direction for possible future efforts toward further change.

Communications received the highest 'don't know', 24 (40 %) responses, indicating a sense of a lack of information about the use of shared racial/ethnic justice language.

A surprising misperception among leaders about the racial/ethnic make-up of the membership of the organization is evident in the fact that 90 % of audit participants believes that AAPC reflects the racial/ethnic demographic of the U.S. and Canada - 11 (18.33 %) said yes,  43  (71.67  %)  said  some.    However,  while  we  have  been  making  steady  progress  in increasing diversity, AAPC is not nearly as diverse as the U.S. population. In 2008 about 5 % identified as racial/ethnic members, with an upward trend in recent years, while nearly 40 % identified as racial/ethnic persons in the 2010 U.S. Census.

There were substantial differences between Regions in participation and responses.

The next steps will be: a release of the final report to the Regions and all groups of leaders, with a request that each region and group take several hours in meetings to study the 8-page summary report and develop specific actions to assure further progress in racial/ethnic justice in the organization.

We will also make the report available online for membership to engage it in a blog with the possibility for comments.


In 2010, AAPC adopted the Anti-Racist Multicultural Competencies, the result of several years of work by the Anti-Racist Multicultural Justice Taskforce, committing itself to becoming "an anti-racist and multiculturally competent organization." To assess the implementation of the Anti-Racist Multicultural Competencies on all levels of the regional and association-wide work of the Association, the Board of Directors developed the  Anti-Racist Multicultural Justice Audit Form(Appendix A).All volunteer leaders and the staffof the organization were asked to participate in an audit of the organization.

The audit form, together with detailed instructions and a call for a 100 % participation rate, was made available online by the AAPC office via survey monkey from September through November 2013. The audit form was released to each region following its regional meeting, beginning on Oct. 9, 2013. One reminder was sent to all leaders. The audit was closed on Jan. 14, 2014. Prior to the release of the survey to each region, Board members introduced in person the audit form and process to regional meetings, the Membership Division, the Products and Services Division, the Judicial Ethics Panel, standing committees, and any other groups of identified leaders or officers of AAPC, and to all staff members. 

Chairs of all groups of leaders had been asked to put the audit on the agenda of their respective groups and keep track of the status of completion of the audit form of all members of their group. To assure that all leaders would receive an email with a link to the audit form, all Chairs were asked by the AAPC office to assure that contact information for all current leaders in their groups were up to date with the AAPC office.


Description of the Audit Form

The audit form adopted by the Board of Directors was constructed by the Chair of the Board of Directors' Racial/Ethnic Justice Audit Subcommittee, Matthias Beier, and refined in consultation with members of the Subcommittee (Insook Lee, Alice Graham) and the Board of Directors. The audit form's structure was informed by the Applied Research Center & Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity's 2009 analysis of racial justice factors guiding its grantmaking assessment (Applied Research Center & Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity 2009).

The form audited whether the leaders and staff believe the Association in its many levels and groups lives out racial/ethnic justice in four content areas: a) internal operations, b) programming, c) communications, and d) the specific 2010 anti-racist multicultural competencies(American Association of Pastoral Counselors 2010). The form presented participants with a total of 23 questions auditing the four content areas and a total of 6 demographic questions (at the beginning of the form: group audited, leadership position, membership in region; at the conclusion of the form: race/ethnicity, gender, age).

Respondents were given four answer choices to each question: none, some, yes, don't know.



Despite efforts of the Taskforce, the Board of Directors, and the staff to ensure broad participation, only 35 % of leaders and staff or slightly more than one third participated in the audit (64 out of 185).

Out of 64 participants who began the audit form, 56 (87.5 %) completed the entire form, 4 (6.25 %) did not continue the form after the first three demographic questions (thus not completing any of the 4 content areas), 4 (6.25 %) stopped responding when the first question of content area anti-racist multicultural competencies asked about "acknowledging past and present factors that systemically have excluded and continue to exclude racial/ethnic and cultural minorities in AAPC" (1 respondent resumed at the next question).   None of the participants who stopped responding identified their race/ethnicity, age, or gender, because those questions were at the end of the form.

Demographicsof participants were as follows:

Racial-ethnic make-up: 47 (73 %) Caucasians, 9 (14 %) racial-ethnic leaders(6 [9 %] African Americans, 2 [3 %] Asian Americans, 1 [2 %] multiethnic), 8 (13 %) did not identify race/ethnicity.

Gender make-up: 33 (51.5 %) male, 24 (37.5 %) female, 7 (11 %) unspecified.

Age make-up: the average age (the mean) was 60, with the youngest participant 29 and the oldest 77, and the most frequent age (the mode) 67 (6 participants);

Regional make-up: 11 (17.19 %) Atlantic, 6 (9.38 %) Central, 5 (7.81 %) Eastern, 4 (6.25 %) Midwest, 6 (9.38 %) Northeast, 3 (4.69 %) none (staff), 4 (6.25 %) Northwest, 5 (7.81 %) Pacific, 1 (1.56 %) Rocky Mountain Plains, 19 (29.69 %) Southeast. Nearly half of all participants, 30 (45.31 %) thus came from the Southeast and the  Atlantic  regions!  Regional  make-up  of  the  racial-ethnic  leaders:  4  in Southeast and 1 each from Atlantic, Central, Eastern, Midwest, and Pacific.

Compared with racial/ethnic membership demographics from Oct. 2008 (2.1 % African American, 1.5 % Asian American, 0.4 % Hispanic, 0.6 % Other), the audit received responses from racial/ethnic leaders at a rate three times as high as the make-up of general membership.




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