With the advent of Minority Mental Health Awareness Month in 2008, the struggles of minorities and marginalized communities have come into focus. The hope is to reduce the stigma and normalize conversations surrounding the negative mental health outcomes for members of these communities. The fact is, one in six Americans suffer from a treatable mental health diagnosis, however, in minority and marginalized communities these numbers are more pronounced. This is due to them being more likely to experience the risk factors that lead to mental illness. It is important to mention here that minorities and marginalized communities experience trauma by virtue of being members of said communities. Trauma is then exacerbated by lack of access to proper medical and mental health services, daily discrimination, coupled with generational trauma stemming from ongoing oppression and racism which can lead to mental health issues. The US Department of Health and Human Services has complied data supporting the fact that minority and marginalized communities are more likely than their white counterparts to face mental health concerns due to the unique challenges they face. This is why Minority Mental Health Awareness Month is so important, to shed light on these problems and bring awareness to members of the general public.
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