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Objective: Students will analyze one concept in Social Psychology, explore supports or critiques for this concept in modern day), and demonstrate how the concept is still applied in the general population (newspaper or online articles), and cross-culturally. 


For many this could be the rationale for conducting further scientific research on the topic. This paper is more of a long essay with just three main parts. 


1. Introduction: With a concise definition of a topic and why you think this topic is worth researching. This must include the general findings, and or relevance of the concept that you will be investigating (Rationale). Very important, there must be a Thesis Statement.

2. Main Body: The concept must be explained using a minimum of 3 primary academic articles, this includes support for the concept, and critiques of the concept. The extension portion of this paper will require a minimum of 3 popular media articles (newspaper or online, excluding satirical websites or blogs) that shows the concept either being used in everyday life, or that shows if the concept of relevant or not to everyday life. How you order this section can be either thematically or chronologically, depending on your thesis for this essay. This section should also include an evaluation of this concept and why you believe this concept is or is not relevant to you personally, or socially (i.e. culturally and in ..modern. times).

3. A short summary responding to the thesis statement this Essay was intended to answer.

4. Articles must be academic or research based (must hove an abstract, introduction, methodology, findings, discussion, and conclusion sections and published in a recognized research journal). No literature reviews, texts, or articles in popular magazines. 

Introduction: General Findings

Racism, prejudice and discrimination are a form of social psychology that is developed around the notion of racial or social superiority that causes antagonistic behavior towards individuals from other communities or races. In Canada, racist, prejudiced and discriminatory behavior is still prevalent and studies show that such behaviors are directed towards individuals belonging to the Canadian Aboriginal (First Nations) Tribes as well as foreign immigrants. Such behavior has also caused an increase in the number of hate crimes across the country with 1,409 criminal incidents being reported in 2016 showing a 3% increase since the previous year. About 666 or 48% of this crime was caused due to hatred towards a race or ethnicity. Reports shows that hate crimes against Muslims in Canada have increased by 253% (159 cases) between 2012 and 2015 (Gaudet, 2018; Minsky, 2017). A poll conducted on behalf of Global News on 1000 Canadians found that 25% of the respondents have experienced racism, while 59% of respondents thought that Muslims and Arabs are most likely victims of such behavior and 28% thought the Indigenous Canadians were also subjected to such behavior (Abedi, 2017). Reports also show that race and ethnicity were the biggest motivators of hate crimes in Canada followed by religion as of 2015 (Minsky, 2017). This shows how racism is still a significant issue in the contemporary Canadian society.

Racism, prejudice and discrimination are still a significant social problem in Canada that adversely impacts a large number of individuals in the country, fostering an increase in hate crimes and violence against people based on the ideas of racial and cultural supremacy. Studies have shown that racism, prejudice and discrimination against certain groups can cause an adverse impact on their physical and mental health, lead to their social isolation and lower their socioeconomic status. Other studies show that such behavior can also increase the risks of crimes as well as mental health problem such as addiction.

The aim of this study is to show that the problem of racism, prejudice and discrimination are still relevant to the modern Canadian society.

Analysis of academic articles and media articles clearly shows that in Canada, several individuals belonging to ethnic minorities, immigrant and indigenous communities face racism, prejudice and discrimination on a regular basis and how it leads to adverse health impacts. Discussed below are some of the key findings from the study:

Siddiqi et al. (2017) studied the association between racism and discrimination with the diagnosis of chronic diseases among the Canadian population to understand how racial differences causes experiences of discrimination and how discrimination can be associated with prevalence of chronic conditions among individuals and communities experiencing racism and discrimination. Data from 2013 Canadian Community Health Survey was used and the respondents were categorized by their racial profiles as Black, Asian, Aboriginal and White and Williams Everyday Discrimination Scale was used to measure discrimination.

Relevance of the Concept Being Investigated

The chronic conditions identified in the study included hypertension, obesity, alcoholism, smoking, sedentary behavior and poor health. The study showed that experiences of racism and discriminatory behaviors were a significant determinant for the onset of chronic health conditions and their risk factors. The authors also concluded from the findings that most of the racial and discriminatory behaviors were experienced by individuals from Black and Aboriginal communities in Canada. This study clearly shows how the problem of racism and discrimination is still relevant to the Canadian society which is affecting the health and wellbeing of the people. Cockerham  et al. (2017) suggested that ‘perceived discrimination’ is a significant Social Determinant of health (SDoH) that influences the health and wellbeing of people. The author pointed out that discrimination can increase stress among the people experiencing it which adversely affects the resistance of the body to diseases causing dysregulations of different biological systems in the body. It was also pointed out that  discrimination within healthcare organizations can reduce the health seeking behavior, reduce the utilization of healthcare services, leads to poor communication between patient and healthcare provider and reduces the quality of care as well as satisfaction levels of the healthcare users. All these factors ultimately results in a higher prevalence of health problems among individuals and communities experiencing racist, prejudiced or discriminatory behavior against them.

Currie et al. (2015) studied the association between racial discrimination and prejudice with health disparities that is seen between the Indigenous and Non Indigenous Canadian communities. The authors used surveys on 372 Aboriginal adults in Canada and their study showed that more than 80% of the Aboriginal adults have faced racial discrimination on the previous year. The authors also found that the discrimination was risk factors for mental health conditions such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and prescription drug problems. The study implied that the Non-Aboriginal (or Non Indigenous) Canadians plays a significant role in the higher incidence of health conditions among the Aboriginal community because of their discriminatory and racist behavior which adversely impacts the health and wellbeing of the Indigenous people. It was therefore concluded by the authors that by reducing the discriminatory behavior against the indigenous Canadians, it is possible to reduce the risks of PTSD and drug problems among them. This has been supported by Dovidio et al. (2017) who also suggested that stigmatization, prejudice and discrimination are social disadvantages that can cause health disparities. Studies on the health of Australian Aboriginals also show supports the same idea due to a higher prevalence of health conditions among the Australian Aboriginal communities. Shepherd et al. (2017) showed that racial discrimination had detrimental impacts on the mental and physical health of indigenous children in Australia and increased the risks of conditions such as behavioral problems, emotional deregulation, sleeping problems, obesity and asthma. However, Reading (2015) also pointed out that unhealthy lifestyle is also another major risk factor for several health conditions prevalent among the Indigenous Canadian communities showing that the health disparities are not only caused by racism and discrimination but also due to the unhealthy lifestyles of the people of the communities.

Thesis Statement

Spence et al. (2016) studied the impact of racial discrimination experienced by the First Nations People (Aboriginal Canadians) on the perceptions of stress among them. The authors collected data from 340 adult members of the Kettle and Stony Point First Nation Community in Ontario, Canada. The results show that discrimination caused an increase in stress while emotional resilience helped to compensate the adverse impact of the stress on the people. The authors suggested that cultural and emotional resilience of the Indigenous people can help them to overcome the adverse effects of racism and discrimination and by developing strategies that can foster emotional and cultural resilience among the indigenous Canadians can help to improve the health and wellbeing of the people. Many other studies have also supported that factors such as racism, discrimination or prejudice can increase stress among people who experience such behaviors (Lucas et al., 2016).

 According to case and Hunter (2014) cultural racism faced by the Black Caribbean immigrants and Black American people in USA was a significant contributor of emotional stress and trauma experienced by them. Similarly, Franklin (2016) also suggested that racism and discrimination is also faced by college and university students that lead to racial micro aggressions, racial battle fatigue, racial trauma and racism-related stress. Such stressors have increased a sense of fear, frustration, anger and resentment and have also been associated with low academic performance and persistence. However, the studies by Spence et al. (2016) had certain limitations such as generalizability of the study (since only one Aboriginal community was used) and the cross sectional study design which could not distinguish the temporariness of the relations. Overall, the study till raises a significant concern regarding the impacts of racism on the wellbeing of people.

Minsky (2017) reported that the incidence of police reported violent hate crimes against Muslim immigrants in Canada have increased by 253% between 2012 and 2015. This shows a drastic increase in the incidence of racist and discriminatory behavior against immigrants in Canada. The author pointed out that even though the overall number of racial hate crimes has reduced, the number of crimes/incidents that were specifically targeted against Muslim immigrants has more than tripled in four years, from 45 incidents in 2012 to 159 incidents in 2015.

The author pointed out that approximately 1,362 hate crimes were committed in 2015 of which 641 was motivated by race or ethnicity with the black communities being the biggest targets (35%) of such crimes while religion motivated about 469 of those crimes. The authors suggested that differences in skin color, culture and religion are the primary factors that influence the racist and discriminatory behavior, causing a fractionalization of the society or community on such basis. However, Doebler (2016) suggested that racism and discrimination is mainly caused due to a lack of proper education, socio-economic deprivation and insecurity and not due to religion. According to the author, religious differences are not the cause of racist behavior since in many countries people from diverse religious backgrounds can peacefully and harmoniously co exist without any incidence of racism and discrimination, which points out that religion might not be the factor causing the problem. The report by Minsky however contradicts such an opinion which shows that the Jewish and Muslim communities are most commonly targeted for religious hate crimes and black communities for racial hate crimes, thereby showing how cultural as well as racial differences being the main causes of prejudice and discrimination. Hence, the increase in the hate crimes against Muslims and black communities in Canada shows hoe racism and discrimination have escalated to a serious level that is impacting the security and safety of the people.

Main Body: Association between Racism and Discrimination with Chronic Health Conditions

Kong (2018) plainly pointed out that the problem of racism in Canada is only getting worse, citing examples of several hate crimes against ethnic minority and immigrant groups in Canada. The author suggested that the number of such crimes is on the rise causing assaults on several individuals from such communities. It has been pointed that some Canadian people, under the context of ‘citizen’s arrest’ have tried to inflict harassment and even injuries on the immigrants, assuming the responsibility of confirming the legality of the immigrants and threatening them to be handed over to the police.

The general population has also started to voice their hatred towards immigrants more openly with several stories showing that the while people calling the police on black people. Moreover the scale of violence against the immigrants has also escalated over the years as previously the incidents mostly involved racist comments, jokes or insults which now have escalated to violent crimes ending up with severe injuries and fatalities. The fact that racism in Canada has become worse over the years has also been supported by other reports that show how racism has permeated into the healthcare as well as education. Gunn and Hall (2018) suggested that structural racism is evident throughout the healthcare system of Canada, as well as in the policies and practices within the public health system which is the cause of health disparities between the indigenous and non indigenous Canadians. According to the authors, the racism and discrimination leads to stress, denial of access to resources, internalization of stigma and tense social interactions. This shows how the problem of racism and discrimination is prevalent in the Canadian society. It has also been pointed out that healthcare providers often have discriminatory or prejudiced opinions especially against the Indigenous Canadians. Their views have largely been justified by studies that show higher prevalence of mental health issues such as addiction as a result of which they are quick to assume that any physical or mental health problem reported by an Indigenous Canadian is because of addiction. Moreover, many individuals from the indigenous Canadian communities have reported of mistreatments and unusual delays in healthcare delivery for them, which they strongly believe was because of their ethnicities.

A recent report by CBC news shows that Edmonton Hotel denied access to a swimming pool to four young people on racial grounds. Even though the individuals were ‘world health’ members, they were denied access to the pool stating that the members were no longer allowed to access the pool. However the hotel did allow few other ‘white’ members of world health to the pool a few hours earlier, showing that the explanation given by the hotel management was a complete faux pas. This report shows how the problem of racism have also permeated even to the hospitality industry whose sole purpose is to be ‘hospitable’ to people. Allowing a white individual from Caucasian background to access the pool, while barring a ‘non white’ individual of Caribbean background clearly showed the discrimination based on skin color that exists in Canada. According to the Federation of Black Canadians, anti black racism is a significant problem in the judicial, healthcare, educational, labor and cultural institutions in Canada as well as in media (fbcfcn.ca, 2018). Reports by Abedi (2017) and Minsky (2017) on Global news also supports such a point that shows a high number of hate crimes committed against Black Canadians. This shows that racial profiling on skin color is a common practice in Canada and it impacts all ‘non-white’ individuals, especially the Black Canadians. According to Murphy (2018), this racist behavior can be associated with a sense of ‘white privilege’ that is exhibited by several individuals from the white Canadian communities.

Main Body: Racial Discrimination of Canadian Aboriginals Causes Health Disparities

Conclusion: 

From the discussion above it can be concluded that the problem of racism, discrimination and prejudice is still a significant social problem in Canada which is impacting the health and wellbeing of individuals belonging to ethnic minority, immigrant and indigenous backgrounds. Such behaviors have seemingly permeated within the various facets of the Canadian society, such as healthcare, education and even hospitality as a result of which people from these communities are often rebuked, discriminated or prejudiced due to the cultural, ethnic or even religious differences. Such behaviors have resulted in significant stress and have increased the incidence of various health concerns, especially for chronic health conditions leading to health discrepancies. Moreover, there has been an increase in the incidence of hate crimes motivated by racial differences that show the problem of racism and discrimination have only gotten worse over the years. Reports of hotels denying access to their facilities to guests of different skin color shows how much the problem has seeped into the Canadian culture. These aspects make it quite clear that the problems of racism, discrimination and prejudice should be taken into account if the health and wellbeing of the people are to be improved.

References:

Abedi, M. (2017). Canada is 150 and still needs to face its racism problem: advocates. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/3556823/racism-in-canada/

Case, A. D., & Hunter, C. D. (2014). Cultural racism–related stress in Black Caribbean immigrants: Examining the predictive roles of length of residence and racial identity. Journal of Black Psychology, 40(5), 410-423.

Cockerham, W. C., Hamby, B. W., & Oates, G. R. (2017). The social determinants of chronic disease.

Currie, C., Wild, T. C., Schopflocher, D., & Laing, L. (2015). Racial discrimination, post-traumatic stress and prescription drug problems among Aboriginal Canadians. Canadian Journal of Public Health/Revue Canadienne de Santé Publique, 106(6), e382-e387.

Doebler, S. (2016). The relationship between religion and racism: the evidence. British Politics and Policy at LSE.

Dovidio, J. F., Penner, L. A., Calabrese, S. K., & Pearl, R. L. (2017). 2 Physical Health Disparities and Stigma: Race, Sexual Orientation, and Body Weight. The Oxford Handbook of Stigma, Discrimination, and Health, 29.

fbcfcn.ca. (2018). Reduce Racism. Retrieved from https://fbcfcn.ca/opportunities/reduce-racism/

Franklin, J. (2016). Racial microaggressions, racial battle fatigue, and racism-related stress in higher education. Journal of Student Affairs at New York University, 12, 44.

Gaudet, M. (2018). Police-reported hate crime in Canada, 2016. Retrieved from https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/85-002-x/2018001/article/54915-eng.htm

Gunn, B., & Hall, R. (2018). Ignored to Death: Systemic Racism in the Canadian Healthcare System. Retrieved from https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/IPeoples/EMRIP/Health/UniversityManitoba.pdf

Kong, S. (2018). "If It Feels Like Racism In Canada Is Getting Worse, That's Because It Is." Retrieved from https://www.flare.com/news/racism-in-canada/

Lucas, T., Lumley, M. A., Flack, J. M., Wegner, R., Pierce, J., & Goetz, S. (2016). A preliminary experimental examination of worldview verification, perceived racism, and stress reactivity in African Americans. Health Psychology, 35(4), 366.

Minsky, A. (2017). Hate crimes against Muslims in Canada increase 253% over four years. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/3523535/hate-crimes-canada-muslim/

Murphy, R. (2018). The contemptible concept of ‘white privilege’ is just ugly, angry racism. Retrieved from https://nationalpost.com/opinion/rex-murphy-the-contemptible-concept-of-white-privilege-is-simply-racism-ugly-and-angry

Reading, J. (2015). Confronting the growing crisis of cardiovascular disease and heart health among aboriginal peoples in Canada. Canadian Journal of Cardiology, 31(9), 1077-1080.

Shepherd, C. C., Li, J., Cooper, M. N., Hopkins, K. D., & Farrant, B. M. (2017). The impact of racial discrimination on the health of Australian Indigenous children aged 5–10 years: analysis of national longitudinal data. International journal for equity in health, 16(1), 116.

Siddiqi, A., Shahidi, F. V., Ramraj, C., & Williams, D. R. (2017). Associations between race, discrimination and risk for chronic disease in a population-based sample from Canada. Social Science & Medicine, 194, 135-141.

Spence, N. D., Wells, S., Graham, K., & George, J. (2016). Racial discrimination, cultural resilience, and stress. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 61(5), 298-307.

St-Onge, J. (2018). Edmonton hotel accused of racial discrimination against 4 young men | CBC News. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/discrimination-hotel-pool-access-1.4917261

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