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The Blind Stigma: Mental Health within the Black Community

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Catalogue Number:  SAB000
Producer:  Stacy-Ann Buchanan
Subject:  Black History, Canadian Social Issues, Current Events, Documentary, Guidance, Health and Medicine, Psychology, Social Issues, Social Sciences, Sociology, Women's Studies
Language:  English
Grade Level:  9 - 12, Post Secondary, Adult
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2015
Running Time:  59:05


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Produced and Directed by Stacy-Ann Buchanan, The Blind Stigma is an award winning documentary that discusses mental health within the Black community. It chronicles and testifies the stories of five individuals (including Buchanan's) on their trials and triumphs with mental health. Each story is told bravely and effectively with additional context provided by mental health professionals, religious leaders, caregivers, and your everyday citizen. Within the Black community, mental health is deemed as a 'Swept Under The Rug' stigma that has been creating false illusions and assumptions for a long time. That stigma is the core component of the African Canadian response to mental illness, and therefore African Canadians who suffer from mental illness are less likely to seek treatment. As a result very few studies have been done on the impact of mental illness in the Black community. The Blind Stigma powerfully removes the veil of shame that clouds the topic of mental illness in the Black community, challenges that misconception, gives a voice to Black Canadians living with mental illness and leaves the audience more informed and empowered.


The Blind Stigma made Canadian History by being the first documentary in Canada that focuses specifically on mental health within the Black Community. Since its release, the film has been featured on several media outlets across North America and the Caribbean, including: CP24, City TV, Huffington Post, Bell Let's Talk, Smile Jamaica, Caribbean Vibrations, G98.7 and CBC. It has screened at film festivals throughout North America, has been featured in high schools, universities, colleges, churches and work places and was used as an initiative for CAMH in changing the stigma surrounding mental health in inner-city communities in Toronto.


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