Addressing mental health among minority communities
RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - July is Minority Mental Health Month and during this ongoing civic movement and health crisis the rates of suicide and depression are going up. For many, it is an overlooked illness that consumes their lives.
From the murder of George Floyd, to the death of Breonna Taylor, and many more who have been victims of the deep-rooted problems in our country, Donald Griffin, Director and Co-founder of Black Wall Street said the black communities’ mental health has taken a major hit. He said many in our community are close to reaching a breaking point.
“A lot of things have to come to the surface about the pain and the anger we suffer from police brutality the hidden things only we know about that have come to surface,” Griffin said.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, roughly 2/3 of people with a diagnosable mental illness do not seek treatment. Griffin said members of the Black community often take matters into their own hands when dealing with mental health issues.
“We are taking the kids off the streets for 8 hours, taking them away from their own peer pressure, from the battles they are facing at home, and we are giving them a new environment to learn who they are and how to deal with their emotions,” explained Griffin.
Norris DuPree Jr., Doctor of Counseling and Educational Psychology said we can’t just place a band-aid on these issues, we need to heal the wound from deep within. He addressed the importance of treating cultural trauma.
“It is necessary so we can see people as individuals versus lumping them in a stereotype typical way,” Dr. DuPree said.
As our nation fights against racial trauma caused by bias and discrimination, it’s important to check in on yourself and seek help if needed before it’s too late.
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