The recent killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others shocked so many out of complacency, catapulting the Black Lives Matter protests into the forefront of people’s minds. Many are still struggling with how to best support the Black community, as well as others who experience racism and discrimination in their daily lives. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic has also added immense unexpected stress to everyone’s lives. The events of the past several months make the significance of July being Minority Mental Health Awareness Month more important than ever.
In a special edition of the Mind the Brain podcast, Neill Epperson, MD, interviews Robert Davies, MD, interim vice chair for diversity, equity and inclusion and Shaleeta Pearson, chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer for the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado School of Medicine about how racism and discrimination can affect one’s mental health. They discuss the new diversity initiatives in the Department of Psychiatry, barriers to minorities seeking mental health care and how to cope with added stressors during this unprecedented time.