3288.0 Social Justice, Social Determinants of Health, and Mental Health

Monday, November 8, 2010: 2:30 PM - 4:00 PM
The Equal Health Opportunity Committee (EHOC) of the American Public Health Association recognizes that social injustices have a significant effect on health, especially the mental health of many men, women and children from economically and politically marginalized communities both in the US and abroad. Social injustices, social determinants of health, and health disparities are complex issues and are often rooted in racial, economic, and educational issues. Politics, legislation, appropriation of funding, and social and structural conditions are all critical elements that contribute to the continuing mental health disparities in our nation. As a nation, we aim to ensure social justice for all by eliminating preventable diseases, disability, injury and premature death; achieving health equity, eliminating health disparities, and improving health for all populations; creating social and physical environments that promote good physical and mental health for all; and promoting health development and health behaviors at every stage of life. This session will focus on the interaction of social justice, social determinants of health and mental health; the entrenchment of mental health disparities; and the politics and health policies that support the issues associated with social and mental health inequities. Our speakers will discuss the root causes and politics associated with the continuing problems of social injustice, social determinants of health, and health disparities, the need for reform at national and local levels, and public policy challenges. Successful programs to promote mental health equity across the lifespan will be shared and the role of public health will be examined.
Session Objectives: 1. Identify the political and economic drivers of social injustices, social determinants of health, and mental health disparities. 2. Describe the elements of successful coalition building to initiate and support initiatives to help eliminate mental health inequities. 3. Consider ways to make changes in public health policy and practice for assurance of improved mental health for all populations.
May T. Dobal, PhD, RN
Candida Brooks-Harrison, MSW, LCSW , Bowen Chung, MD, MSHS , DJ Ida, PhD and Velvia Garner

Race and Mental Health
Candida Brooks-Harrison, MSW, LCSW

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: APHA-Equal Health Opportunity Committee
Endorsed by: Asian Pacific Islander Caucus for Public Health, Community Health Planning and Policy Development, Caucus on Public Health and the Faith Community, Socialist Caucus, Women's Caucus