A study by Iowa State University researchers shows a link between discrimination and depression among African-American kids. Researcher Ron Simmons says the study involved 5th graders from families in 41 communities in Iowa and Georgia. He says the research showed fifth graders who experienced discrimination — or lived in a community where discrimination was present — had a greater risk for suffering from depression. Simmons says that wasn’t the only link found to depression.He says kids who experienced crime, or had family members that experienced crime, also were more susceptible to depression. Simmons says the findings are surprising as they didn’t expect to find the link to depression in children that young. He says there were some positive things identified in the study, communities with good involvement in black cultural activities tended to buffer the kids from depression. Simmons says the findings go against the popular opinion that there’s little discrimination in Iowa.Simmons is the director of the Institute for Social and Behavorial Research at I-S-U. He says this information is just part of a lengthy study that will continue for the next five years.
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