In our society, many personal challenges, from substance abuse to depression to ADHD, are regarded as mental disorders by health professionals. In what ways does the language of diagnosis empower us and enable access to services and community support? To what extent do these labels limit, stigmatize or pathologize? Does diagnosis help us to better understand ourselves and each other? Across time and space, communities have viewed mental health from vastly different perspectives, suggesting that the diagnostic medical model is only one way to address these issues. How does this model shape our identity and society? What other paradigms might help to shine light on subject? In this public conversation, we will open a space where people can explore their thoughts and feelings on this complicated, and sometimes sensitive topic.
Suzanne Amro is a full time high school teacher who specializes in the instruction of English Language Arts and Ethics and Religious Culture. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from McGill University and a Master’s Degree in Theological Studies from Concordia, where her focus was on Applied Ethics with an emphasis on the practice of dialogue. For the past two years, she has been involved in Compassionate Listening training.
Jamie Robinson is returning to University of the Streets Café as a guest. She is interested in how we frame ourselves and others through language, and in particular, she is interested in how our identity is formed through language and the ways that language can define and confine us.
Susan Edey is the Program and Communications Coordinator for Concordia University’s Office of Community Engagement. She revels in the dual role of organizing public conversation and spreading the word about the exciting community-based initiatives happening around Concordia. Long fascinated by mental health and emotional well-being, Susan is excited to be putting on her moderator hat for this conversation.