We face multiple interconnected crises: the worldwide pandemic of Covid-19, climate concerns and the overarching impact of systemic racism. Covid-19 has taken the greatest toll on communities of color. Climate change is also now recognized as one of the social determinants of health.
Lower income people of color are exposed to environmental risks at a much higher level when compared to more affluent, white communities. These communities of color have a higher rate of exposure to environmental toxins and climate-related diseases and the least access to quality health care. Additionally, they are often living in conditions that leave them most vulnerable to the changing climate. And yet, due to structural racism, these same communities get the least amount of attention and support to redress these environmental injustices.
In this workshop, we will discuss the interconnections among the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent economic downturn, structural racism, and climate change. We will highlight the value of building caring communities and resilience, while recognizing the cultural factors influencing mental health.