AAPIH in bloom
Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is extensive. Not in length—it lasts just 31 days in representation. It celebrates the cultural and historical contributions of descendants from the entire Asian continent—including South, East and Southeast Asia—as well as the Pacific Islands of Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia (fig. 1). That’s almost 50 distinct, one growing group within the Unites States.
The May celebration commemorates the completion of the first transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. Its tracks were largely laid by Chinese immigrants, who worked more hours for less pay than their co-laborers of European descent.
Supporting AAPI people is especially pertinent today. Communities across the U.S. have seen a 339% increase in anti-Asian hate crimes throughout the duration of the coronavirus pandemic. Additionally, therapy professionals say it’s particularly common for Asian immigrants to not want to draw attention to themselves — and by extension, avoid turning to mental health resources to cope.
Coupled with the lack of Asian-American history in school curricula, the resiliency and depth of the AAPI spirit is more than deserving of praise this May and beyond.
Today’s Mental Health Landscape
Mental Health Awareness Month helps us prioritize the importance of mental health on individual and societal levels. There’s no denying the past two years of COVID-19 pandemic life have taken a toll on mental well-being across communities.
According to recent CDC data, more than a third (37%) of high school students reported they experienced poor mental health during the pandemic. Additionally, resources like therapy are not universally covered under insurance, creating a monetary barrier that proves to be especially deterring for Black and Hispanic Americans — two groups less insured and more likely to be affected by COVID-19.
Looking up from your phone, what do you see?
Researchers from the University of Bath asked participants to take a week-long break from TikTok, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to study their mental health effects.
According to the results, those who took the one-week break saw significant improvements in well-being, depression, and anxiety compared to those who continued to use social media, suggesting a short-term benefit. A growing body of research also suggests that spending time in Nature can produce a host of phycological benefits.
So this Mental Health Awareness Month, we urge you to log off and get out there. Now and always, be mindful of how personal and professional social media usage is affecting your well-being.
Women’s healthcare across the country left exposed
Early May, a leaked Supreme Court opinion draft revealed the Court is poised to overturn the landmark ruling, Roe v. Wade. Beyond the country’s vast and immediate moral reactions, the opinion has opened the door to increased scrutiny and new legislation seeking to regulate women’s healthcare resources.
Like the Missouri House of Representatives, which passed a bill that would defund Planned Parenthood (PP) clinics in the state, even though the majority of their services consist of STI testing, cancer screenings, and contraceptive care.1
Whether or not you personally have sought family planning care from a place like PP, it’s a topic exceptionally relevant to us at broadhead as a predominantly (and proudly) female-operated organization.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the best health care is provided free of political interference in the patient-physician relationship.2
Where national topics meet local Twin Cities restaurants, shops, and events.
Unmissable Monthly Miscellany: