Skip to Content
Agencies | Governor
Search Virginia.Gov

Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

In May of 2008, the US House of Representatives announce July as Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month.

The resolution was sponsored by Rep. Albert Wynn [D-MD] and cosponsored by a large bipartisan group to achieve two goals:

• Improve access to mental health treatment and services and promote public awareness of mental illness.
• Name a month as the Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month to enhance public awareness of mental illness and mental illness among minorities.

All month long, the DBHDS OHEA will share information about mental health in minority communities. Keep an eye out for articles, research, toolkits, and more!

Like our Facebook page for much more. 

 "Once my loved one accepted the diagnosis, healing began for the entire family, but it took too long. It took years. Can't we, as a nation, begin to speed up that process? We need a national campaign to destigmatize mental illness, especially one targeted toward African Americans. The message must go on billboards and in radio and TV public service announcements. It must be preached from pulpits and discussed in community forums. It's not shameful to have a mental illness. Get treatment. Recovery is possible." --Bebe Moore Campbell, 2005

Mental health is part of overall health. Mental health conditions cause changes in thoughts, feelings and mood. Mental health conditions can affect many areas of your life including: home, work, school, relationships with others, sleep, appetite, decision making and may worsen other medical problems. Click on the multicultural mental health infographic from NAMI to read more.

Millions of Americans live with mental health and/or substance use disorders. Although there is no racial, ethnic, or cultural association with the prevalence of these disorders, it is a fact that communities of color in the United States face significant mental health inequities and greater barriers in getting the treatment they need.

The general population faces significant barriers to getting treatment for mental health conditions. More than 50 percent of adults with mental illness did not receive care they needed, according to 2014 data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The problem of access is even more profound for communities of color than for non-Hispanic whites: African American, Asian, and Latino adults are all roughly 35 percent less likely to receive treatment for their mental illness because of accessibility issues.(Central East ATTC).

AA accessAsian accessLatino access

How can access be improved? Check out these links.

Organizational Supports

Clinical Supports

It would be negligent to speak of minority mental health and wellness and not address the acts of violence currently plaguing  in our country.  In an effort to explore further the dynamics involved in these current events and share methods to support healing, we have gathered some links that speak to race based trauma and supporting individuals in times of civil strife. 

Chronic condition of stress can have negative side effects on all persons. But the unique psycho-social and contextual factors, specifically the common and pervasive exposure to racism and discrimination, creates an additional daily stressor for people of color. Research shows this to be particularly true for African-Americans (APA, 2016). Read more at the links below.