The Effects Of Media On Public Opinions About Mental Health And Illness

1665 Words Jan 18th, 2016 7 Pages
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Problem and Idea like teens throughout the world, Canadian adolescents are at high risk for mental illness. Research has shown that in Ontario alone, about one out of five 4 to 16 year-olds suffers from some type of psychiatric disorder. Even though treatment of mental illness is generally covered by the Canadian government, one thing that people are not protected against is the social stigma and discrimination that comes along with it. All over Canada, youth are struggling with mental illness, and the services offered to them are not enough to truly help them recover. The problem is that the lives of young people with mental health conditions are often overwhelmed by social stigma, the shame attached to mental illness being viewed as socially unacceptable. Many studies have found that media and the entertainment industry play a key role in shaping public opinions about mental health and illness. People with mental health conditions are often portrayed as violent, dangerous, and unpredictable. News stories that exaggerate violent acts by a person with a mental health condition are typically featured as headline news; while there are fewer articles that feature stories of recovery or positive news concerning similar individuals. Entertainment frequently features negative images and stereotypes about mental health conditions, and these portrayals have been strongly linked to the development of fears and misunderstanding.
I propose to establish a non-profit…

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