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Over the course of this semester, I have written, commented, and submitted a collection of posts to Newsactivist. In this project, our final Newsactivism post, I will reflect on my news summaries, my volunteering opportunity, and the overall connection between all the work I have completed during this semester.    

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I care about the topic of drug-free treatment for mental illness because I strongly believe that it should be encouraged around the world. I’ve seen people in my life that are close to me suffer from mental disorders and the horrible side effects they had to go through while taking pharmaceuticals and visiting doctors every week. I care about it even more than I did before because I know a lot more about it now. In order to get my results, I read and analyzed specific chapters from 3 different novels that I found the most relevant to my topic.

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The issue of objectivity in news is one that has been brought up a myriad number of times during the past decades not only here in Canada, but in much of the western world as well. Though there are differing opinions on whether or not journalists should strive to be ‘objective’ in their reporting, there has never been a clear connection established between the logistics that go into producing a news story and how this may affect the purported notion that an ‘objective’ frame of reality is being crafted.

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The Breakfast Club is possibly one of the most well-known movies of the 80s. Although a classic, The Breakfast Club we all know and love has not changed lives like the one Canada has come to appreciate. The Breakfast Club of Canada is a non-profit organization committed to providing a free nutritious breakfast to all of the young growing minds across Canada. The organization was founded in 1994 by Daniel Germain. Germain’s main objective was to “change the world for children.” He believed he could attain this goal by breaking the cycle of poverty that plagues so many children.

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Decades ago, individuals who suffered from mental illnesses were imprisoned in shackles, out of sight and out of mind of “society”. Today, these metal shackles are gone, but the shackles of social stigma and profit-driven treatment remain.

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A mentally ill man from St John’s who was diagnosed with schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder was just released from jail after being charged with assault and threatening his father and step-mother. The man, Taylor Mitchell, 21, ran after them with a chainsaw and hit his father. The police were called and Mitchell was arrested and spent the night in jail and was denied bail. His lawyer, Joan Dawson, says that jail was the very last place he should’ve been because of his mental disorders.

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Dr. Huas, a French doctor specializing in mental health developed a study that would help clinicians better understand the causes and risks of mortality in patients with anorexia nervosa. This study is one of the very few that has aimed to find the specific signs that would lead to mortality in a women with anorexia nervosa; knowing that “anorexia has a one in three mortality rate (Huas, 2011).” The study involved 601 women only, who were admitted in-patient due to meeting the DSM-IV criteria and requirements for anorexia nervosa.

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The issue in the news that I’ve been writing about and plan to do my essay on is the stigma around mental health, how drug-free treatment (such as counseling and group therapy) is more effective than pharmaceutical treatment, and how these two topics have a connection. Some of the news stories that I’ve summarized that really caught my attention and inspired me to dig deeper was the story of Alain Magloire, a mentally ill homeless man who was shot and killed by police as well as the story of the 20 year-old Sasha Menu Courey who was raped by three of her fellow classmates.

2,704 | 7 | 0
This article talks about a man named David Oaks, who once suffered from schizophrenia and was “locked up” five times because of episodes he had while being a student at Harvard. He claims that each time, he was forced into being drugged because he was told it would help, although it never did and in fact did the opposite. After getting his degree at Harvard in 1977, he joined a movement that was against all use of medication to treat mental illness. Around the year 1990, he started his own organization called Mind Freedom.

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This article speaks about a study where there was an investigation on certain characteristics that might enhance discouragement among young adults attending outpatient alcohol and drug group therapy. One goal in the study was to provide information for nurses and other professionals who work with teens who suffer from mental health disorders and substance abuse. An audit reviewed the files of 64 teenagers who attended a weekly alcohol and drug group therapy between the years of 2002 and 2004.

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16 percent of our nation's homelessness population possesses a mental illness as well. Is right to give them permanent housing and keep them off the streets?

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The main purpose of President Obama’s speech was to discuss Immigration Reform. The audience consisted of business leaders, faith leaders, labor leaders, and law enforcement leaders, Democratic and Republican mayors. There were multiple people from each business sector mentioned.

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Alexia Codrington                                                                                  Blog Research 1                                     The Ongoing Search For Her Identity

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Mental Illness seems to be one of those taboo subjects in today’s culture, but people don’t realize that talking about it can help you in the long run! This study shows how changing your perspective on mental health disorders can impact your likelihood to reach out for help if ever you found yourself suffering from a mental illness in the future. Thinking more positively of others now could help you later. Andres Martinez’s studies have shown a positive relationship between humanizing mental health disorders, compassion, and help-seeking behavior.

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This article explores the exciting possibility of using exercise to assist in the treatment of patients with Major Depression Disorder (MDD) as well as other depression disorders. By performing this study treatment for people diagnosed with MDD whom are resistant to pharmacology treatments could finally receive benefits and advancements in their progress through the complex condition of MDD.

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Robert Whitaker began his career working as a scientist and medical reporter at the Albany Times Union newspaper in New York. His journalism articles won many awards, including a George Polk Award for medical writing, and a National Association of Science Writers' Award for Best Magazine Article. He co-wrote a series for The Boston Globe that earned him the position as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 1998. Later, he wrote four books. A majority of his writing revolves around psychiatry, the pharmaceutical industry, and medical histories.

2,558 | 7 | 0
The Lighthouse, Children & Families is a non-profit organization that focuses on the well-being of children who suffer from life-threatening illnesses, and provide support for their families. In order to achieve this mission, they offer three different types of services, which are: End-of-life care at Maison André Gratton, the only pediatric care facility in Quebec.

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The Association of Relatives and friends of people with mental illness in the South Shore’s mission is to join together the family and friends of a person who suffers from mental illness, and offer support services to help them overcome their disorder. The ages range from kids as young as three years old to young adults at the age of 25. 3 to 10 year old kids are offered art therapy, older kids aged 10 to 15 are offered art therapy and individual meetings, and teenagers and young adults aged 15 to 25 are offered both of those as well as support group meetings.

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Since 1989, Kids Help Phone’s mission is to simply be there for kids when they need someone to talk to about something they are too embarrassed or afraid to tell anyone they know. They provide an anonymous phone line that kids can call and talk to someone and receive professional counselling that is completely confidential and non-judgmental. The line is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year where the counsellor’s do not exactly solve problems for the child, but rather open a discussion with them to offer advice and guide them to making better choices in whatever situation they’re in.

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The Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Greater Montreal have more than just one mission. They aim to prevent elementary and high school students from dropping out of school, to improve a young one’s self-esteem, social skills and lifestyle habits, and to offer children from single-parent families a role model whom they talk to about certain issues they have. They tackle these missions with numerous programs: Traditional pairings, group pairing, the Prometheus Project, the Horizons Project, and the Par-Aine Project.

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February 17th 2014 Ending the Death Penalty by Dale. S  Recinella Is the death penalty necessary? After 1976, when the death penalty was reinstated, innocent people were wrongly convicted (Recinella, 2008, p.12). According to many churches, if there is no other way to protect innocent law-abiding citizens the death penalty shall be used (Recinella, 2008, p. 13). I believe that the death penalty is ineffective.  

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The issue I will be discussing revolves around mental health, and how crime and law is dismissed when it comes to this issue.

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Original article from The Gazette:  

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