Mental Health and Poverty
Mental health and poverty are two major issues in our society that do not get the prioritization
needed. Many people suffer needlessly because of lack of services, funding, and stigmatization.
As a country, America takes great pride in providing various humanitarian assistance throughout
the world. However, assistance to our own citizens suffering from mental illness and poverty is
lacking. Many Americans are left uncared for; forced to endure the hardships alone.
The debate over whether poverty precedes mental illness or vice versa continues to loom. However
the fact that the combination of the two has devastating consequences is well known. In a” World of
Psychology” article titled, “The Vicious Cycle of Poverty and Mental Health”, Dr John Grohol
describes the challenges faced by those with mental illness and poverty. In his article, he clearly
points out contributing factors, commonalities, and and consequences due to lack of assistance. He
also touches on beneficial results when aid is given.
The link between poverty and mental illness has already been established. The negative impact on
individuals as well as society is evident. Still many people view the victims as being lazy, inferior,
and worthless. Victims are often blamed for their condition, and
looked upon as undeserving of help, and burdensome to society. This ignorance accompanied by
the political climate, prevent the needed funding, services and destigmatizing to be implemented.
Thus preventing the healing, which would benefit both individuals and society.
Mental illness, though prioritized amongst those in many public service occupations, seems not to be
of great concern for the majority. Rather than classifying and treating it as a legitimate illness, such
as diabetes, it is viewed as a character defect. The well being of the individual is ignored. They