Blog

Sen. Casey introduces Veteran Peer Specialist bill [Observer-Reporter.com]

U.S. Sen. Bob Casey is introducing a bill to increase the number of peer specialists within the Veterans Affairs health care system. The “P.E.E.R. Act,” or Veteran Partners’ Efforts to Enhance Reintegration Act, was announced on a conference call Wednesday in which Casey outlined the case for more – and more readily available – veteran peer support specialists to share their experiences and support service members diagnosed with mental health disorders. “There are 1,100 of these peer support...

Asking Mom: 'Did You Know I Was Depressed In High School?' [NPR.org]

Rose has dealt with depression since high school. She'd put her head down, focus on school and get through. But during her senior year of college, Rose couldn't even concentrate on school anymore. "I was struggling. I was feeling depressed. I was feeling isolated," Rose, now 24, says. "I was crying at Cheerios commercials, which is not normal." Rose started seeing a therapist and feels like she has everything under control. She's even on her way to becoming a therapist herself, in her third...

Historical Trauma: White People vs. White Privilege

This is an interesting read from the Atlantic about anti-racism work in the United States. Anti-racism work being instep with a recognition of the effects of historical trauma. There are noteworthy actions being taken, one of which I have included below as a partial excerpt from the original piece. The article covers everything from Ben Carson, Cosby, the role of white people in the case of Trump, on to general political activity. The writer assumes the reader has or encourages the reader to...

Graduation Speech / Spoken Word Poetry

This is an amazing graduation address. It is essential listening for educators, students, social justice advocates. It is poignant for anyone who has been "the one" and felt alone in that status. It is powerful for anyone who wishes to climb into the experience of another whether it is shared or not. Because, as student, speaker, poet, educator and graduate Donovan Livingston said: "Our stories are the ladders that make it easier for us to touch the stars. So climb and grab them. Keep...

Killing Dylann Roof [TheAtlantic.com]

On Tuesday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced she would seek the death penalty for Dylann Roof. It has not been a year since Roof walked into Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and murdered nine black people as they worshipped. Roof justified this act of terrorism in chillingly familiar language—“You rape our women and you’re taking over our country.” The public display of forgiveness offered to Roof by the families of the victims elicited bipartisan praise from across the...

Getting Shoppers to Make Healthy Choices at Corner Stores Remains Elusive as Ever [CityLab.com]

“If you build it, they will come” isn’t a cure-all for the problem of healthy options in urban food deserts. Study after study has found that even when fruits and vegetables are easier to come by, residents aren’t necessarily more likely to buy them. Take Philadelphia and Detroit , where healthy eating campaigns raised awareness, but didn’t spur behavioral change. In 2014, summarizing the disappointing findings from the study in Philadelphia, the Los Angeles Times’ Melissa Hardy posited that...

The Holyrood baby needs a focus on prevention of adverse childhood experiences [HolyRood.com]

Imagine if in Scotland we could reduce our inequalities in health and wellbeing, what would that Scotland look like? It would be a country where fewer people smoked, fewer people used heroin, there would be less binge drinking, less violence and there would be fewer people in our prisons. All good. This also means that there would be less demand on public services, and the Christie Commission report in 2011 spoke of the need for public service organisations to prioritise preventative...

Oakland ends suspensions for willful defiance, funds restorative justice [EdSource.org]

The Oakland Unified school board voted unanimously Wednesday night to eliminate willful defiance as a reason to suspend any student and to invest at least $2.3 million to expand restorative justice practices in its schools. “If we are to ensure that success for Oakland children is not determined by cultural background or neighborhood, it means that we must build strong relationships with our students at school and invest deeply in restorative practices,” said superintendent Antwan Wilson in...

4 Steps to Setting Healthy Personal Boundaries [PsychCentral.com]

Sometimes it just feels easier to please others than to stand up for what we really want. Why? Maybe we don’t like confrontation. Or maybe we just like making other people happy. That’s not a bad thing. It can feel great to give others what they want, but it’s important to recognize when they overstep the mark. Personal boundaries are how we set our personal limits. They are how we separate ourselves as individuals from the influence and intentions of others. They are an essential tool for...

Bringing brain development 101 to kids who miss preschool [SCPR.org]

In a small room at the Pico Union Library on a recent Friday morning, Marissa Gonzalez and her 3-year-old squished gooey, green blobs of colored shaving cream onto big swaths of paper. Gonzalez is mother of three and she gave up her job as a special education teacher to be at home with her young children. She has been trying to get her youngest child into preschool, but while she waits for a spot, they spend a lot of time together at home. Gonzalez joined this group at the library, called...

How to Build a More Diverse and Inclusive Nursing Workforce [RWJF.org]

I became a nurse by accident at a time in my life when I had no direction. My family had moved from Ecuador to Queens, New York when I was a child. As a teen, there were times when I lived in group homes or even the streets and I felt completely lost. I dropped out of junior high. When an acquaintance suggested in passing that I enroll in the nursing program at Queensborough Community College, I followed her advice without realizing that nursing would become my calling. I had to overcome...

What the UK is getting right about reflective supervision [www.rip.org.uk]

Researchers in the UK have been building an evidence base for reflective su pervision , a model which acknowledges the impact that working with people who have experienced trauma, adversity and toxic stress has on professionals and provides a structured, collaborative, safe space for them to address it. "Recognizing that there is little understanding from research of what reflective supervision is, its impact and how to do it well" Research in Practice embarked on the Reflective Supervision...

Toward a trauma-informed city: Challenges and opportunities in Philadelphia

After many months of interviewing, editing, more interviewing and more editing, “Toward a Trauma Informed City: Challenges and Opportunities in Philadelphia” will be launched next week. A group of leaders who have adopted trauma-informed practices were interviewed about their experiences recognizing trauma as an issue, what they decided to do about it, and the change they have seen from the work of their organization. These 27 leaders come from public health, behavioral health medicine,...

New NIH-EPA research centers to study environmental health disparities [NIH.gov]

The National Institutes of Health has partnered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to fund five new research centers to improve health in communities overburdened by pollution and other environmental factors that contribute to health disparities. Within each center, scientists will partner with community organizations to study these concerns and develop culturally appropriate ways to reduce exposure to harmful environmental conditions. “It is important to understand...

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