Newly available data from the Ontario Disability Support Program reinforces the disconcerting, and expensive, relationship between low economic status and mental health problems.
image: Sholeh via Flickr/CC
image: Nancy L. Stockdale via Flickr/CC
Just in time for Valentine’s Day was this week’s publication in Lancet Psychiatry of a study on suicide and unemployment. Globally, about 45,000 people have been ending their lives yearly in direct response to a lack of work. The study included dozens of countries during the period 2000-2011. That means even before the Great Recession unemployment was damaging mental health. Even during good economic times suicide prevention and social services must be tuned to the influence of unemployment.
Suicide, unemployment, and the effect of economic recession
link to abstract
image: marie-II via Flickr/CC
MintPress News and socialworkdegreecenter.com provide a value-rich infographic on the effect of poverty on the brain for poverty awareness month. Poverty is tough on brains: we needn’t be a genius to figure that one out!
Canada’s Mental Health Commission has bolstered our understanding of how to mitigate a serious social difficulty. Excellent. Money well spent it seems on a program designed to get those with mental illness into good, supportive housing as quickly as possible. In Canada the system has tended to treat or control mental illness first and house later. Early results indicate a hopeful direction but the media coverage of this could positive story should have been stronger in our opinion.
Housing and homelessness
mentalhealthcommission.ca – this page features a number of topic-related documents
A five-part, in depth look at children, poverty and mental health in Hamilton, Ontario is underway at cbc.ca. If the first segment is anything to go by this will be an impressive piece of feature journalism on a very important topic. Even moderate exposure to poverty has implications for community mental health because of its effect on childhood development. Hamilton’s children will be the first generation to grow up there as citizens of a fully post industrial community. Where those children go so goes Hamilton. A picture of the conditions and issues faced by Hamilton’s children is assembled by Denise Davey based upon key statistics and time spent with families. Some of the best cared for of children are found in Hamilton but even newer neighbourhoods “up the mountain” as Hamiltonians say, are home to children in problematic situations.
Is it just us or does a diagram of the human brain look like a map of a suburban neighbourhood, replete with winding cul-de-sacs? Perhaps, after a full year on the topic at hand, we simply need a vacation? Not speculative, of course, is the general relationship between where a person is and how they feel. Two items from Australia and one from Ireland indicate that depression is not just an economic term.
Sick suburbs theage.com.au
What price a home? theage.com.au