Why so many Latina teens in Philly have attempted suicide

A new report sheds light on a startling finding: Latina girls in Philadelphia are more likely than white or African-American girls to attempt suicide. One in seven has attempted suicide and one in five has seriously considered it. Why is this happening and why hasn’t this fact made its way into mainstream discourse about mental health?

Philadelphia Inquirer reporter Aneri Pattani explains on this episode of The Why.

Listening to Black Women and Girls

Listening to Black Women and Girls: Lived Experiences of Adultification Bias

By JAMILIA J. BLAKE, PH.D. and REBECCA EPSTEIN, J.D.

In June 2017, the Georgetown Law Center on Poverty and Inequality released Girlhood Interrupted: The Erasure of Black Girls’ Childhood, a report that presented the findings from our quantitative analysis of a form of gendered racial bias against Black girls: adultification.

This bias is a stereotype in which adults view Black girls as less innocent and more adult-like than their white peers, devoid of any individualized context. In other words, adultification bias is not an evaluation of maturity based on observation of an individual girl’s behavior, but instead is a presumption — a typology applied generally to Black girls.

Help end adultification by sharing your own story here.

Watch a video on the subject here.

Read more at The Georgetown Law Center.

A new report shows how racism and bias deny black girls their childhoods

It’s long been suspected that black girls are perceived as more adult-like and less innocent than white girls in school and other environments, and a new report offers further confirmation that this is the case.

Researchers with the Initiative on Gender Justice and Opportunity at Georgetown Law’s Center on Poverty and Inequality spoke directly to black girls and women across the country about how they are forced to deal with harmful perceptions — like that black girls are more mature and less in need of protection than other students — from a young age.

This phenomenon, which the researchers refer to as “adultification bias,” was examined in a 2017 report from the same team. The latest report builds on those findings by including the lived experiences of black women and girls. It’s also worth noting that many of the women cited in the report recalled dealing with the same sorts of issues in their childhoods, showing that this is far from a new problem.

Read more at Vox. 

One woman’s story shows how systems are failing black girls

For the first time in a long time, C’alra Bradley felt a glint of hope.

It was an unfamiliar feeling for the then-18-year-old whose life had been disrupted and derailed by one roadblock after another. Once an A and B student who loved to read, she was living out of her white 1997 Toyota Avalon, on her own for three years, scrounging to get by.

But on July 18, 2016, as she attended one of her first classes at a GED and job training program in Houston, C’alra finally believed things were about to change.

She beamed as a career coach outlined the course ahead: the stipend for good attendance, the training on construction builds, the high school diploma at the end. C’alra (whose name is pronounced See-er-uh) could almost clasp the glimmer of a better life.

Then, with the coach’s next words, the vision evaporated: The students needed to wear work pants and closed-toe shoes for job sites.

A shadow flicked across C’alra’s face. The dress and flip-flops she wore were the only clothes she had. She had no money. No idea what to do.

Read more at USA Today.

One in 7 Latina girls in Philadelphia has attempted suicide, yet their struggles often remain invisible

Every morning when Noelia Rivera-Calderón got to high school, she’d run to the bathroom to throw up.

The first few times, the school nurse suggested she go home. But after that, the staff acted as if it were normal for her to be sick.

Every morning when Noelia Rivera-Calderón got to high school, she’d run to the bathroom to throw up.

The first few times, the school nurse suggested she go home. But after that, the staff acted as if it were normal for her to be sick.

Today, Rivera-Calderón is fighting for girls like her to be seen. She recently led a report from the National Women’s Law Center about the mental health of Latina students in Philadelphia, titled “We Are Not Invisible.”

Read more at the Philadelphia Inquirer. 

Philly’s Latinx girls need more mental health support

Growing up in North Philadelphia in a Latino household, we never talked about mental health. But I knew something was off when, at age 15, I stopped wanting to go to school and was feeling depressed. Like many kids, I turned to my mom first — telling her I wanted to talk to somebody. But the Latino community faces a lot of stigmas when it comes to our mental health.

As a community, only 20 percent of us who have symptoms of a psychological disorder will talk to a doctor about our concerns and, even worse, only 10 percent of Latinos will contact a mental-health specialist, according to the National Alliance on Mental Health. That’s why it should come as no surprise that my mom’s response was, “you’re just having a bad day. I have bad days, too.” But I wasn’t just having a bad day. Soon enough, I was skipping school on a regular basis and feeling sad all the time.

Read more at the Philadelphia Inquirer 

A Long Walk Home at CREA Reconference

A Long Walk Home was the only group selected from the United States to present in Kathmandu, Nepal at the CREA Reconference: Rethink, Reimagine, Reboot April 10-12. From the support of With and For Girls, an international collective of funders (EMpower, Mama Cash, Nike Foundation, NoVo Foundation, Plan UK, Stars Foundation, The Global Fund for Children and The Malala Fund) Girl/Friends will join other young girl activists from Mexico, Indonesia, Haiti, Turkey, Egypt, Russia, and many more to reimagine change and transformation and reboot a movement.

Learn more about A Long Walk Home here. 

Learn more about CREA Reconference here.

 

The Pedagogy of Pathologization: Dis/abled Girls of Color in the School-Prison Nexus

Subini Ancy Annamma’s The Pedagogy of Pathologization: Dis/abled Girls of Color in the School-Prison Nexus portrays the processes and social factors that place the bodies of multiply-marginalised dis/abled women of colour in the criminal justice system, while also putting the voices and experiences of these individuals at the centre of the book. Annamma adopts Beth Ritchie’s (2012) notion of a ‘prison nation’ and situates schools within this in order to understand how a ‘societal goal’ for public education is to fill prisons.

Throughout, Annamma chooses the term ‘dis/abled’ to signify ability as based on social context, continually shifting over time, rather than as a fixed state. In reference to her subjects, Annamma uses the word ‘girls’, though they are well into their teenage, secondary school years. In her discussions, Annamma demonstrates a commitment to intersectionality and DisCrit, which calls for a critical lens that recognises the ways that race and dis/ability are socially constructed interdependently with material, social and political impacts. Annamma employs this lens in order to understand the process behind the creation of the criminal identity in the juvenile incarceration centre and to create a pedagogy of resistance.

Read more about The Pedagogy of Pathologization on LSE’s US website.

Buy the book here. 

Do Women Of Color Philanthropists Give Differently From Their White Counterparts?

The intersection of race, gender and giving started a few years back, when philanthropists started to focus on channeling more money to women and girls of color. Inside Philanthropy last year reported that women and girls of color receive only 2% of philanthropic pie, even though they make up 19% of the U.S. population. Initiatives such as Grantmakers for Girls of Color begin to address the gap. As women of color philanthropists begin to rise, they hold tremendous power to close the funding gap even further.

In order to support women of color philanthropists effectively, it is important to understand if their giving patterns, journeys and experiences are different from their white counterparts. Research published yesterday by the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI), Women Give 2019: Gender and Giving Across Communities of Color, explored these differences. The quantitative part of the study found that giving patterns are very similar across ethnicities and races, but the qualitative part – in-depth case studies with six women of color philanthropists – articulated the subtle differences between them and their white counterparts.

Read more at Forbes

What We Risk When We Fail to Protect Black Girls

Last month, the Lifetime docuseries Surviving R. Kelly elevated the claims against the R&B singer as a serial abuser of women and girls. Kelly was charged in Illinois on Friday with ten counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

But what also became apparent from the docuseries was the number of adults—from Kelly’s manager to parents of the minors he is believed to have violated—who were complicit in his systematic abuse of underage Black girls. Beyond the pain his alleged victims suffered, the docuseries highlighted that these girls were not afforded the protection they deserve as children, much like Black girls at large.

Such disregard for Black girls and women’s safety has public health consequences. Notably, emerging research implicates this systematic lack of protection in the disproportionately high rates of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among Black girls and women. This was also evident in the docuseries: One woman said she acquired an STI from Kelly.

Read more at Rewire News