The facts about violence against historically disadvantaged persons
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome
The disadvantaged racial/ethnic and sexual orientation minorities and women have disproportionately experienced suicide and homicide in the United States. The complex history of each group, its language, attitudes, values, and behaviors, which interact with those of the majority culture, produce unique patterns of violence. Regardless of a victim's background, a psychiatric approach that begins with an assessment of the cultural identity of the victim gives each victim the best chance of becoming a survivor. This approach recognizes the assets available in the victim's community of support and provides a safe haven for learning adaptive and proactive behaviors. Finally, psychiatrists are encouraged to advocate for broader social changes that will prevent future victimization and provide greater opportunities for recovery.