World Toilet Day 2019 logo
Social justice

It’s World Toilet Day – and Yes, That’s a Thing

UN-Water I love a good toilet joke, but this actually isn't one.  World Toilet Day is an initiative of UN-Water, the United Nations agency that deals with sanitation.  This year's theme is leaving no one behind, which speaks to the 4.2 billion people worldwide who don't have access to safe sanitation. The numbers are astonishing.  Open… Continue reading It’s World Toilet Day – and Yes, That’s a Thing

Social justice

Nevertheless, she persisted

In 2017, during Jeff Session's confirmation hearing to be attorney general, Senator Elizabeth Warren raised concerns about Sessions' civil rights record. After quoting a statement made by former Senator Ted Kennedy in 1986, that Sessions was a disgrace to the Justice Department, Senator Warren proceeded to read a letter from Coretta Scott King that was written… Continue reading Nevertheless, she persisted

Justin Trudeau in Aladdin costume with brownface
Social justice

Halloween, Blackface, and Cultural Appropriation

Time.com Not long ago, a photo was forwarded to Time.com from a 2001 yearbook of Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, who was a teacher at the time, dressed in an Aladdin costume that included brownface makeup.  It caused quite a stir, with some people criticizing him as being racist. Since it's Halloween, it seems like… Continue reading Halloween, Blackface, and Cultural Appropriation

the word vote displayed across a blue and red background
Social justice

Voter ID Laws as a Form of Voter Suppression

Image by Hannah Edgman from Pixabay With all the craziness going on in the world, elections have been on a lot of people's minds lately. The other day I started watching Chelsea Handler's new documentary special on Netflix called Hello, Privilege.  It's Me, Chelsea.  One of the things it touched on was voter suppression through rules around voter… Continue reading Voter ID Laws as a Form of Voter Suppression

Social justice

The Tragedy of Female Genital Mutilation

Female genital mutilation (FGM) is sometimes referred to euphemistically as female circumcision, but it is very different from male circumcision in both form and function. FGM involves cutting or removing parts of the external female genitalia, including some or all of the clitoral glans and clitoral hood, inner labia, and outer labia.  The diagram below… Continue reading The Tragedy of Female Genital Mutilation

The words Human Rights with hands reaching towards them
Mental health, Social justice

Human Rights and Mental Illness

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was proclaimed by the United Nations in 1948.  I thought it might be interesting to take a look at some of its articles from the perspective of someone with mental illness, and throw in some assorted other observations as well. Text in italic font is the actual… Continue reading Human Rights and Mental Illness

many arrows pointing at the central intersection
Mental health, Social justice

Intersectionality and What it Means for Mental Health

Black feminist researcher Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw first proposed the concept of intersectionality in 1989 by to represent the many different layers of social stratification that can combine to disadvantage people.  This includes factors like race, sexual orientation, social class, age, disability, and gender.  Expanding on this concept, sociologist Patricia Hill Collins described the intersectional points as… Continue reading Intersectionality and What it Means for Mental Health

workplace mental heatlh statistics
Mental health, Social justice

Mental Illness and Employment Discrimination

Canadian Office of the Ombudsman for Mental Health Employers aren't supposed to discriminate against people with mental illness.  In fact, it's often against the law.  Yet employment discrimination happens, so what do we do about it when it does? Canadian human rights legislation In Canada, provincial human rights legislation requires equal rights and opportunities for… Continue reading Mental Illness and Employment Discrimination

group protesting, with a no sign in foreground
Social justice, Stigma

NIMBYism and Mental Health Housing

Image by Niek Verlaan from Pixabay NIMBYism is a fascinating phenomenon.  NIMBYs, or people think that something is okay just as long as it's Not In My BackYard, cover discrimination with a thin veneer of civility and acceptability.  Among the many manifestations of this is with regards to social housing, including supported housing for people with mental illness.… Continue reading NIMBYism and Mental Health Housing