Refugee Mental Health Resource Network → Free - No CE

Working with Refugees, Immigrants, and IDPs - June 19, 2020

This webinar examines how trauma informed mental health treatment is delivered in consideration of social isolation, social distancing mandates, and the intersection of various languages spoken by refugees. The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly changed the way services are delivered requiring the mental health system to reassess the delivery of care. Dr. Mattar will discuss considerations and recommendations for treating US based refugee and asylum populations via telehealth in the context of trauma-informed and culturally responsive treatment.

Core competencies to provide emergency mental health care to refugees are essential to service provision. A discussion of Dr. Perez's experiences conducting asylum evaluations, related assessments and psychotherapy with South East Asian, and South and Central American refugee populations in the US used to develop trauma informed service delivery for sub populations, such as survivors of gender-based violence and sexual trafficking will be presented. The effective utilization of interpreters during asylum evaluations and other assessments will be discussed. Q & A to follow.

Presented by:

Elizabeth Carll, PhD
Sandra Mattar, PsyD
Lemny Perez, PsyD


Elizabeth Carll, PhD, a licensed psychologist in New York, founder and chair of the Refugee Mental Health Resource Network (RMHRN), an APA Interdivisional Project, she is a founding member, and former president of the APA Trauma Psychology Division and chairs the International Committee. A former chair of the United Nations NGO Committee on Mental Health, she is the founder and chair of its Global Mental Health and NCDs Working Group and serves on boards of non-profit organizations. Moderator.

Sandra Mattar, PsyD, is an assistant professor and clinical psychologist at the Boston University School of Medicine/Boston Medical Center, Faculty/Supervisor at the Center for Multicultural Training in Psychology at Boston Medical Center (BMC), and psychologist at the Center for Refugee Health and Human Rights, at BMC. A licensed psychologist with more than 20 years of clinical and teaching experience combined, her research interests include psychological trauma and culture, and immigrant and refugee mental health.

Lemny Perez, PsyD, is a clinical psychologist trained in forensic assessment and psychotherapy with refugee South East Asian, and South and Central American refugee populations in the Bay Area, CA. She is the former Director of Behavioral Health at West Oakland Health. Dr. Perez is the Chair of Division 52 Covid-19 Taskforce, Service Delivery Committee, the Director of Global Healing at Gratitude Alliance, founder at Pure Lotus Wellness, and volunteers at NYC COVID Care Network.

Learning Objectives

1. Participants will be able to describe some of the major changes and challenges brought about by COVID-19 vis-à-vis telehealth care with refugee/asylum seeker populations.

2. Participants will be able to describe key trauma treatment considerations using telehealth to treat refugee/asylum seeker populations.

3. Participants will be able to identify culturally responsive clinical interventions for working with refugees.

4. Participants will be able to describe practical applications on how to engage interpreters in asylum and other assessments with refugees.


Please see all references in the course content under Documents.
  • Working with Refugees - Webinar Recording
  • References for Working with Refugees, Immigrants and IDPs
  • Division 56 Course Survey
Completion rules
  • All units must be completed