Saturday, January 29, 2011
Mental Health in America
The recent shootings in Tucson, Ariz., killing six people injuring 14 others, has raised uproar across the U.S.. The shootings have called into question the mental health of the gunman, Jared Loughner. Several students and instructors at Pima Community College of Tucson, where Loughner once went to school, witnessed his erratic behaviors which resulted in Loughner’s removal from the school.
Why did Loughner never receive treatment if his behavior resulted in such extreme measures? One psychologist suggests that cost of treatment and the stigma surrounding it might be to blame.
The truth of the matter is this: 26 percent of American adults suffer from some form of mental illness including depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Many who suffer from such disorders don’t receive treatment because they can’t afford it. The African-American population in particular suffers disproportionately from mental health issues and lack of mental health treatments than any other Americans ethnic group. Glen Ellis’ article, Well-Being includes mental stability too, sheds light on this disturbing truth, touching on stigmas that prevent African-Americans from seeking treatment, as well as providing potential possible ways to resolve the issue.