Buffalo shooting exposes lack of mental health in Black community, w/Mai Lo Lee

Michael Vinson was surprised to feel his heart pounding while shopping at his local grocery store on Sunday afternoon. Yet, there he stood in the store he knew so well, scanning the walls for exit signs.Vinson wasn’t in any immediate danger, but being Black while grocery shopping ended in bloodshed for 13 people at a Tops Friendly Markets supermarket in Buffalo, New York, on Saturday. Ten people lost their lives.”Unexpectedly, I felt a rush of fear and a need for self-protection. I started to look for the exits,” Vinson, sales director at Schreiber Foods in Green Bay, told USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin Monday. “What’s happening in the broader world impacts the way that I show up in the world where I do live.”All of that is still carried every day and in every situation, including when you show up at work.”

…“Seeing this kind of stuff is impactful to the Black community for sure,” Hill said. “It’s hurtful. It’s traumatizing. It’s all of that for us.”

Mai J. Lo Lee, director of the Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs (MESA) Office at University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, said she’s received many text messages and emails from students and alumni in distress over the recent spate of hate crimes.

Often, Lee said, people don’t have a safe person with whom to have dialogues about diversity, racism and acts of terrorism. That’s a heavy burden for people of color to carry.

“We are in a predominately white region, and those who are more vulnerable are probably going to identify as BIPOC,” Lee said. “A lot of our white allies are unsure of what to do, because it’s not role modeled for them.”

Source: Buffalo shooting expose lack of mental health in Black community

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