270357 Complex individual, community and systems changes from the inside out: Skid Row resident positive movement

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Virginia Diane Woods, DrPH, MSN, RN , Department of Psychology/African American Health Institute-SBC, University of California, Riverside, San Bernardino, CA
General Jeff, Community Activist , Skid Row Los Angeles, Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council (DLANC), Founder, ISSUES AND SOLUTIONS, Hollywood, CA
Despite technological enhancements in the U.S., serious health and healthcare inequities and excessive burdens of ill health in Blacks and other minorities persist. It is well documented that Blacks, as well as other ethnic and cultural groups, are unserved, underserved or inappropriately served in the mental health system. Throughout the nation, little evidence documents from the perspective of Black people as to their reasons for continual disparate outcomes in mental and behavioral health. Likewise sparse evidence is available that identifies their recommendations for improving outcomes; especially among vulnerable and high-risk populations, such as the homeless. Skid Row Los Angeles is known as the “homeless capitol of the Nation.” According to a 2011 assessment in Los Angeles County, there were 51,340 homeless individuals of which 45% were Blacks. Skid Row residents express they have been ignored for decades and have NEVER had a voice in identifying problems or solutions related to health issues. Skid Row residents actively participated in a multi-level statewide strategic planning project designed to reduce disparities by restructuring the state mental health system based on ethnic and cultural community-defined emerging practices. The author, representing the Skid Row residents, will share the perspective of his community and over 75 Skid Row resident's participation in a 2-year statewide community-based participatory research project. The presentation will describe individual, community and systems changes initiated and sustained by residents, their participation in the statewide California Reducing Disparities Project (CRDP) and their experiences working with a trans-disciplinary team.

Learning Areas:
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
To list at least five prevention interventions that specifically identifies community-defined practices to improve mental and behavioral health outcomes in African Americans To discuss at least five culturally appropriate African American programs and components that have promise to significantly address mental health issues in the target population

Keywords: African American, Community-Based Public Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a resident of Skid Row. I am a community activist working on multiple issues within the Skid Row community for over 5 years. I am the Resident Director for the Central City East/Skid Row Board of Directors (Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council), and the Co-Chair of the Skid Row Community Advisory Board for the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.