The Weekly MashUp is a recurring segment on Hear Me Out, the Young Minds’ Blog, highlighting the most pertinent local and national news for children’s mental health advocates. If you haven’t already, sign up to be on our email list to get the Weekly MashUp delivered to your inbox automatically, every Friday!
Travel Ban, Targeting of Mosques Trigger Mental Health Concerns Among California Muslims
The Sacramento Bee – 2.23.17
In 2015, police reported 91 assaults against Muslims nationwide, the highest number since post 9/11, up from 56 in 2014. With the increased aggression and hostility towards Muslim Americans, many wonder “whether they still are welcome in this country while they worry about their own safety and the safety of their loved ones.” The Amala Hopeline, a mental health support line for young Muslims based in Sacramento, has seen a spike in calls since the election of Donald Trump. Volunteer and founder of the organization, Saleem, suggests that “people are hesitant to openly talk about it because they’re accused of not being religious enough…they say you’re depressed because you don’t pray enough, and if you just pray more, your mental health problems will just go away.” According to data from the Hopeline, callers most often talk about depression and family stress, and also bring up cultural and religious pressures, relationship concerns, and financial worries. Dr. Rania Awaad, a psychiatrist at Stanford, notes that “there is this very real anxiety, and a sense of ‘what it I’m next?’ The ability to cope, in general, has definitely gone down.”
LA Center Fills a Gap for Health, Mental Health and Other Services Specifically for LGBT Youth
Youth Today – 2.23.17
The article highlights the efforts of the Los Angeles LGBT Center in Hollywood, which offers free or low-cost services and receives more than 42,000 visits per month from youth and adults. The Youth Center, which sees 70 to 100 people daily, and receives nearly 1,100 unique visitors annually, provides much needed services to young people, including foster youth and youth experiencing homelessness. Jeremy T. Goldbach, an assistant professor at the University of Southern California, believes facilities like LA LGBT Center are needed across the country. He notes that “LGBTQ youth have unique needs that are sometimes not addressed in mainstream environments — questions about dating, sex, relationships, finding role models, etc.” The mental health programs offer individual and group counseling and psychiatric care by providers who are experts in serving LGBT people.
Teen Suicide Rates Dropped After Same-Sex Marriage Was Legalized, Study Finds
Broadly – 2.21.17
A new study published Monday in JAMA Pediatrics found that legalizing same-sex marriage on the state level helped lower the rate of teen suicides. To understand trends in teen suicide, researchers from Johns Hopkins University analyzed data from 762,678 young people who participated in the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System between 1999 and 2015. They also conducted analysis per state, looking at places that passed same-sex marriage policies between 2004 and 2015. Among the general high school population, research found that prior to implementing same-sex marriage laws, 28.5% of LGB students reported one or more suicide attempts in the past year. After the implementation of same-sex marriage laws, researchers saw a “14 percent relative decline” in suicide attempts. Julia Raifman, lead author of the study, highlights that “permitting same-sex marriage reduces structural stigma associated with sexual orientation. There may be something about having equal rights — even if they have no immediate plans to take advantage of them — that makes students feel less stigmatized and more hopeful for the future.”
Smartphones Are Really Stressing Out Americans
Time – 2.23.17
A New Diagnosis: ‘Post-Election Stress Disorder’
Kaiser Health News – 2.22.17
Poetry, Love And Psychosis: Can Writing Help Us Come to Terms With Mental Illness?
The Guardian – 2.22.17
On the Knife’s Edge: Using Therapy To Address Violence Among Teens
NPR – 2.21.17
Inside A Mom’s Months-Long Fight to Get Back Her Children
Los Angeles Times – 2.16.17
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