Guide to Equity Terminology – Preview of a New SAMHSA Resource


The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) recently added a new post to the SAMHSA Blog to set the stage for their forthcoming Guide to Equity Terminology (GET). This new decision-support tool will provide insights and practical guidance on the importance of equitable language and its role in promoting behavioral health equity. The blog post provides a preview of the GET, including the principles of behavioral health equity terminology, the power of words in behavioral health, considerations for adopting terminology for equity, and available resources for health equity. The full GET will be released by SAMHSA at a future date.

Several resources on this topic can also be found at the Integration Academy. Resources related to stigma are available in both the Substance Use and Unhealthy Alcohol Use Tools & Resources Collections, as well as the Literature Collection. Recent Academy news stories have featured resources for advancing equity for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AA NH/PI) communities and LGBTQ+ patients in integrated care settings. Also see the Academy Topic Brief on Health Equity for practical strategies and resources for addressing social and economic inequities while integrating behavioral health in primary care settings. Additional Federal resources include Words Matter - Terms to Use and Avoid When Talking About Addiction from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and Health Equity Guiding Principles for Inclusive Communication from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).