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Chapter 3

HIST 1180 Chapter Notes - Chapter 3: Visible Minority

Course Code
HIST 1180
David Kuffman

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jPoverty & Mental Health Reading
- Mental health consumers are not the only group to be affected by poverty; groups such as
women, visible minorities, seniors and the larger disabled population are
disproportionately impacted
- Poverty has grave implications for people’s health, education, social relations and social
- Poverty was recognized as a key cause of marginalization.
- Of importance has been the suggestion that a lack of income works against successful
community living and mental health.
- Lack of income can also negatively affect opportunities for social network development
and social integration
- poverty and economic marginalization faced by mental health consumers constitute a
form of social oppression, and that material deprivation represents a challenge of greater
magnitude than psychiatric illness itself
- Subjective Quality Of Life measures include items relating to food and clothing
suggesting that these issues have considerable bearing on quality of life
- the paper explores the effects of poverty on consumers’ ability to lead meaningful lives in
the community.
- For some respondents, cigarettes consumed between one third and one half of their
- Moreover, substance abuse is linked to a number of social and financial costs for people
with serious mental illness including homelessness, incarceration, limited social supports,
and clinical relapse
- A theme that appeared consistently in interviews was a sense of spatial isolation faced by
respondents. Allied with this, many people expressed frustration at not being able to
engage in meaningful activities. Both concerns were linked directly to income
- Having less money takes away from relationships as well because men cant afford it
- Poverty makes people feel bad about themselves
- A majority of these consumers rely on government transfer payments as their primary or
sole source of income.
- Social relationships are affected both through direct material constraints and the shame
associated with poverty. Finally, the study suggests that poverty may function to
reproduce the stigma of mental illness by drawing on and reaffirming popular stereotypes
of consumers as visibly ‘different.’
- Rethinking the meaning of basic needs will require efforts to address this and other
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