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Calling In, Not Calling Out

Presented by Loretta J. Ross

Presenter Bio

Loretta J. Ross is an Associate Professor at Smith College. As a 2022 recipient of the MacArthur Foundation “Genius” award, she is an activist, public intellectual, and scholar. Her passion is innovating creative imagining about global human rights and social justice issues. As the third director of the first rape crisis center in the country in the 1970s, she helped launch the movement to end violence against women that has evolved into today’s #MeToo movement. She also founded the first center in the U.S. to innovate creative human rights education for all students so that social justice issues are more collaborative and less divisive. She has also deprogrammed members of hate groups leading to conceptualizing and writing a book on Calling In the Calling Out Culture to transform how people can overcome political differences to use empathy and respect to guide difficult conversations.

Loretta started her career in activism and social change in the 1970s, working at the National Football League Players’ Association, the D.C. Rape Crisis Center, the National Organization for Women (NOW), the National Black Women’s Health Project, the Center for Democratic Renewal (National Anti-Klan Network), the National Center for Human Rights Education, and SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective, until retiring as an organizer in 2012 to teach about activism.
Her most recent books are Reproductive Justice: An Introduction, co-written with Rickie Solinger, and Radical Reproductive Justice: Foundations, Theory, Practice, Critique. Her forthcoming book, Calling In the Calling Out Culture, is due in 2024.

She has been quoted in the New York Times, Time Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post, among others. In addition, she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 2023.

Harm occurs in all communities, whether it be microaggressions or greater ruptures. It is impossible to assemble a group of people and not have at least some tension; – in fact, tensions and frictions can help us grow and learn. In this presentation, Professor Ross will provide an overview of the C5 Calling In Framework, which helps individuals to create change in the world by changing their behavior rather than trying to change someone else. C5 is often an in-the-moment intervention, which can be used in conjunction with other tools for systemic change.

The spectrum of the C5 Calling In Framework offers five ways to engage when harm occurs.

Always ask yourself what you have the capacity for and strategically choose a response that works for you and for your situation. Each response can be incredibly effective, but not every style works for everyone in all situations.
Calling Out:Public demands for others to change their behaviors, speech or thoughts to hold them accountable
Cancelling:Punishing people with job loss, deplatforming or other consequences
Calling In:Private or public skills for having difficult dialogues with others while respecting their human rights and differences
Calling On:Requesting people to do better without investing in their growth
Call it Off:Disengaging the conversation

Oftentimes when harm occurs we get locked into a binary mindset where there are only two response options: calling out or calling in. This results in a belief that calling out is bad and calling in is good. Therefore, one should never call out and always call in. It is important to get away from this binary thinking and instead, think about the spectrum of five options which comprise the C5 continuum.

Course Objectives

At the conclusion of this course, participants will be able to:

  1. Explain the 5 C Calling In Framework.
  2. Explain calling out, calling in, calling on, canceling and calling it off.
  3. Identify situations where calling in could be effective.

Instructional Level


Licensed mental health professionals employed through Kaiser Permanente and psychological assistants performing under supervision of a licensed psychologist.

This CE program is free to Kaiser Permanente employees.
Instructional Methodology
On-line Presentation

Continuing Education Information

Kaiser Permanente Northern California Mental Health Training Program is approved by the California Psychological Association to provide continuing professional education for psychologists. The Kaiser Permanente Northern California Mental Health Training Program maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Refund and Attendance Policy

All programs offered on KP Learn for CE credit through the KP Northern California Mental Health Training website are free of charge to Kaiser Permanente Staff and trainees. Once a course is selected in the KP NCAL MH Training Website, the registration process begins, and it will appear in the individuals KP Learn profile for completion within 90 days.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Those who attend the program in full and complete the appropriate evaluation form will receive CE credits. Please note that credit will only be granted to those who attend the entire program. An attestation of attendance will be given once the individual has completed viewing the program, which will then initiate the final steps of completing the evaluation forms to receive a certificate of completion.

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