July is Bebe Moore Campbell National (BIPOC) Minority Mental Health Awareness Month. The movement was created to bring awareness to the unique struggles that underrepresented groups face regarding mental illness in the United States.
In honor of this month’s focus on minority mental health issues, Lisa C. Williams, Book Publisher and Host of Game Changers Radio Show is stepping up to create real conversations about the effects racial trauma and witnessing the ongoing killing of black people is having on the black communities’ mental health. Through conversations with African American mental health experts and professionals, the goal of the interview series is to make the black community aware of the effects these challenges may be having on their mental health and to offer some solutions.
Daniel H. Gillison, Jr., CEO of The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) said, “Our nation’s African American community is going through an extremely painful experience, pain that has been inflicted upon this community repeatedly throughout history and is magnified by mass media and repeated deaths. We stand with all the families, friends and communities who have lost loved ones senselessly due to racism.”
According to the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, adult African Americans are 20% more likely to report serious psychological distress than adult whites. Research has shown that both African Americans and Hispanics are more likely to have feelings of sadness, hopelessness and worthlessness than whites, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
African Americans living below the poverty level are twice as likely to report psychological distress as those 2 times over the poverty level. African Americans of all ages are more likely to be victims of serious violent crime than are whites, making them more likely to meet the diagnostic criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD).
“Brighid Kleinman and Eric Russ shared in an article, “In recent days, black people have been repeatedly reminded of the risks involved when they interact with police, been repeatedly exposed to videos of black men and women being murdered and seen a military response to communities protesting these abuses. These experiences are piled onto the daily experiences of direct, indirect and systemic racism. The cumulative effect of these experience can have a serious damaging impact to the mental and physical health of black people. Psychological scientists have come to describe this impact as racial trauma.”
“It is incredibly important to address this issue and open dialogue within our community and in the world at large, and figure out how we can support black people deal with the increased mental anguish and mental health challenges in our community,” Williams, said.
She added, “I’m seeking out black mental health experts so that we have the best and the brightest voices who understand from a black perspective how racial trauma is impacting us, so more African Americans will be inclined to listen!”
Dr. Walker, a licensed Clinical Psychologist, Professor and Researcher who works and speaks at the intersection of culture, spirituality, and mental health to address the impact of racial tension said, “What we don’t know is killing us—slowly, but it’s killing us.”
To learn more about Game Changers Radio, or to inquire about being a guest, visit: http://www.smarthustleagency.com.
About Lisa C. Williams
Lisa C. Williams knows what it is to “start from the bottom,” and still achieve six-figure business success. As a single mom who has overcome many odds, Lisa’s greatest passion is helping business owners work smarter, not harder, and she is on a mission to help people overcome their success blockers and make their mark in the world without working themselves to death! She has personally worked with over 50 professionals, helping them achieve “Best-Selling Author” status, and has helped over 200 clients receive media mentions.
Lisa is currently debuting her new on demand radio show, Game Changers Radio and FREE Bounce Back Bootcamp for Black People. Williams is the CEO of Smart Hustle Agency & Publishing and is producing several collaborative books under their new book series, A Message In A Bottle, which is said to be the new Chicken Soup For The Soul—but with a twist.