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Mental healthcare for the BIPOC community

Seeking mental healthcare can be challenging for those in the BIPOC community, but there are many resources available to help. Sponsored by Premera Blue Cross.

SEATTLE — Mental health conditions are common, but many people are not receiving treatment for their mental illness. In the BIPOC community, this can be due to several challenges.

“You look at the access to healthcare,” said Richard Taylor Jr., author, speaker, and mental health advocate. “You talk about the therapists that are available when it comes to access, whether they can take clients right now or if they are culturally competent.”

Stigma is also one of the biggest barriers to care. Many people have been taught to be quiet about their problems or turn to religion, rather than seeking mental healthcare.

“We’ve got to be able to unlearn a lot of what we’ve taught from folks who just weren’t educated around the truth,” Taylor Jr. said. “We all have a mental health. Therefore, we all need to be able to invest into it.”

Taylor says when choosing a mental healthcare provider, it’s important to take the time to find out if it’s a good fit. Ask questions about their level of understanding when it comes to your struggles, cultural background, and past experiences. Look for green and red flags like you would in a relationship.

“Take the time to treat it like an interview process and be able to see flags,” Taylor Jr. said.

There are many resources available to help you determine your needs and next steps and assist with finding the right provider. These include the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Washington Therapy Fund Foundation, and Mental Health America.

To learn more about mental health and the BIPOC community and find resources, visit the Premera website.

Sponsored by Premera Blue Cross. Segment Producer Joseph Suttner. Watch New Day Northwest 11 a.m. weekdays on KING 5 and streaming live on KING5.com. Contact New Day.

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