The Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion collaborates with students, faculty, administrators, staff, and members of our surrounding community to promote and implement the University of Wisconsin-Parkside's mission, strategic diversity, and inclusion initiatives.
The Election and Your Mental Health

With election day being less than a week away, the anticipation and uncertainty, compounded by racial unrest, COVID-19, and virtual learning, stress levels are high for everyone. Our mental, emotional, and physical health are being taxed and stretched beyond measure. Since March 2020, 37% of adults in the U.S. report having mental health issues, up from 11.0% in 2019. The Center for Disease Control reports that communities of color are experiencing stressors at far greater rates, thus amplifying their overall health risks, risk of chronic illness, and susceptibility to death. 

Now, more than ever, we must be intentional about taking care of ourselves, and separating from habits, things, or people who do not help improve our wellbeing. Mental health professionals suggest the following ways to help get through these challenging times. 

  • Vote early:
  • Early voting is open in Wisconsin.
  • Limit news and social media exposure
  • Watch and read enough to stay informed, then switch to something pleasant. Or close all screens and enjoy the silence.
  • Don’t catastrophize
  • Yes, there’s a lot of distressing news. But don’t let your thoughts spiral out of control. Take a deep breath. Relax your hands. Remind yourself, “I’ll get through this.”
  • Avoid political conversations
  • If friends and family insist on talking politics, kindly tell them, “I’d prefer to discuss something else.” Then bring up a different topic or, if necessary, leave the room.
  • Exercise and move your body.
  • Find hobbies that are far away from the political fray. You’ll enjoy yourself while you destress. 
  • Practice mindfulness and focus on the serene. 
  • Listen to a meditation podcast. Participate in an outdoor yoga class. Watch fish swim in an aquarium. Serenity is within reach whenever you seek it.
  • Know that nothing lasts forever. 
  • This era will fade into the past. Keep things in perspective to minimize their impact.
  • Ask for help and utilize mental health services if needed.

November is Native American History Month

On Dec. 14, 1915, Red Fox James, a Blackfeet Indian, presented at the White House endorsements from 24 state governments for a day to honor Indians. But the federal government didn’t act until 1983, when President Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 13 as American Indian Day. In 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed a joint congressional resolution designating November as National American Indian Heritage Month. It is now called National Native American Heritage Month. The Native American narrative has long been controlled by a history told through the eyes of the dominant Western culture. In order to change this narrative, we must understand there is a narrative to be changed and a heritage to celebrate. Native American Heritage Month is one step toward an ever-present recognition and celebration of the Indigenous peoples of North America.

The commemoration of the month provides a platform for Native Americans to share traditions, music, crafts, and dance with others. It also serves as a powerful reminder for non-Natives of the important contributions and significance of Native people in the history and the present-day reality of North America.

However, the importance of honoring Native people runs much deeper than this one month of celebration and commemoration. 
Did you Know?

  • Prior to 1492, 10-12 million Indigenous people called North America home

  • There are 573 federally recognized tribes in the United states, 11 are in the state of Wisconsin. Many of these tribes have lost their language: Why were languages and traditions lost? “Kill the Indian and Save the Man.” The United States forced Native youth to attend federal boarding schools where they were forbidden to speak their languages, required to learn English, and forced to assimilate in numerous ways. No one was allowed to practice spiritual or cultural traditions—it was against the law.  

  • The United States made 500 treaties with the Indian Tribes, 500 treaties were broken.
Implicit Bias: the attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions, and decisions in an unconscious manner. - Kirwan Institute, The Ohio State University

Implicit Biases, do you ever wonder how they are formed? It is not just one act or behavior that create our biases, they are formed over a period of time, reinforced by messages we receive about other races, genders, religions, cultures etc.

Watch the clip below to learn how our views are shaped my messages we receive.

Have a Suggestion?

The University provides a comment box where students, faculty, and staff are able to provide feedback, ask questions, or offer up suggestions anonymously.
Human Resources | 262.595.2204 | Diversity@uwp.edu