Advocating for Marginalized Populations
The LGBTs are among the populations that are at an increased risk of mental health problems due to systemic barriers. Some of the systemic barriers that face LGBTs in the US are homelessness, bullying, and rejection, among others. A report by the Human Rights Watch indicates that while almost everyone deserves respect and fair treatment, LGBTs are denied equality through a systemic religiously motivated discrimination, and state endorsements that are dangerous (“All We Want is Equality,” 2018).
Such barriers challenge access to essential services such as healthcare, leading to adverse health outcomes. Besides, homelessness, bullying, and rejection are stress factors that increase the risk of psychological health issues such as anxiety and depression. Besides, Kidd, Howison, Pilling, Ross & McKenzie (2016) found that social injustices facing LGBTs increase their susceptibility to mental health problems.
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I am committed to eliminating the systemic barriers through advocacy as a psycho-educator and a change agent. Through psychoeducation, I will educate individuals both at micro and meso levels concerning the theories of sexual orientation. That way, individual LGBTs will appreciate and perceive themselves as worthy persons and members of society. The community, which entails family and friends, will understand the anomaly in the sexuality of their LGBT community members. That way, everyone may understand the value of social justice for all LGBTs and the implications such as mental health problems. That way, cases such as bullying and family rejection will reduce. As an agent of change, I look forward to standing against the social injustices against the LGBTs, through activism. This will continue the wave of sensitization and creation of awareness regarding the discrimination of LGBTs and its health implications, among others.
Kidd, S., Howison, M., Pilling, M., Ross, L., & McKenzie, K. (2016). Severe Mental Illness in LGBT Populations: A Scoping Review. Psychiatric Services, 67(7), 779-783. doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201500209
“All We Want is Equality”. (2018). Retrieved from https://www.hrw.org/report/2018/02/19/all-we-want-equality/religious-exemptions-and-discrimination-against-lgbt-people