"The opposite of poverty isn't wealth, the opposite of poverty is justice" – Bryan Stevenson
Society & Social Justice

Poverty Can Be Very Expensive

A recent post by Shira of ShiraDest about debt forgiveness got me thinking about some of the barriers that people living in poverty face when it comes to managing their finances. So, let's consider what it might look like to be living in poverty here in British Columbia, Canada, where I live. Provincial income assistance… Continue reading Poverty Can Be Very Expensive

Social justice and equality word cloud
Mental Health, Society & Social Justice

Universal Basic Income: Benefits for People with Mental Illness

I don't have the economics background to speak to the feasibility of universal basic income, so I won't try; however, after a conversation on the topic with Shira of ShiraDest, I wanted to explore the potential benefits for people with mental illness. What universal basic income is While various implementations have been proposed, at its… Continue reading Universal Basic Income: Benefits for People with Mental Illness

What is... insights into psychology series
Insights into Psychology

What Is… Intergenerational Trauma

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychology-related terms.  This week's term is intergenerational trauma. Trauma that occurs at an individual level is devastating enough, but when it occurs on a collective level, the effects of that trauma may not stop with the people who directly experienced the traumatic events.… Continue reading What Is… Intergenerational Trauma

woman injecting drugs in an alley
Society & Social Justice

The Survival Sex Trade

We're all familiar, at least to some extent, with the sex trade.  If nothing else, you may have seen the movie Pretty Woman. The level of desperation in the survival sex trade, though, is galaxies away from what you see in Pretty Woman. The vulnerable I used to work at a community mental health team… Continue reading The Survival Sex Trade

many arrows pointing at the central intersection
Mental Health, Society & 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

Just Say No poster with two marijuana joints
Society & Social Justice

The Failure of the War on Drugs

National Library of Medicine If you were around in the 80's, you are probably very familiar with the message to "just say no" that was part of the overall war on drugs.  In 1991, Saved By The Bell got on board with an episode that told viewers "there's no hope with dope."  There was also… Continue reading The Failure of the War on Drugs

NIMBYism: not in my backyard is just another way of saying mental illness stigma
Society & Social Justice, Stigma

NIMBYism and Mental Health Housing

NIMBYism is a fascinating phenomenon.  NIMBYs, who think that something is okay 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. The NIMBY arguments NIMBYs' arguments… Continue reading NIMBYism and Mental Health Housing

tiles representing different healthcare specialities
Society & Social Justice

Is Healthcare a Right or a Privilege?

Is access to healthcare a right that should be shared by all people regardless of socioeconomic status?  Or is it a privilege that belongs to those who can afford to pay? Growing up in Canada, all I ever knew was a public healthcare system.  There is no charge to see a doctor or to be… Continue reading Is Healthcare a Right or a Privilege?

We all deserve a roof over our head - that includes people with mental illness
Society & Social Justice

Homelessness & Mental Illness: We All Deserve a Roof Over Our Heads

Far too many people with mental illness will experience homelessness at some point. Why is that, and why on earth is it acceptable? Risk factors for homelessness According to the Homeless Hub, 30-35% experiencing homelessness have a mental illness.  Among women, that figure jumps to 70%.  How does society allow this to happen to some… Continue reading Homelessness & Mental Illness: We All Deserve a Roof Over Our Heads