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The Social Distribution of Distress and Well-Being in the Canadian Aboriginal Population Living Off Reserve

Author(s): Susan Wingert

Journal: International Indigenous Policy Journal
ISSN 1916-5781

Volume: 2;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 1;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: mental health | distress | well-being | stress process

This article examines how the social structure distributes risk and protective factors and mental health outcomes within the off reserve Aboriginal population in Canada. It uses the stress process model, aprominent model in the sociology of mental health, to explore pathways between social status, stress, coping resources, and mental health outcomes. Path analyses are used to decompose total effects on distress and wellbeing into direct and indirect or mediating pathways. The results suggest that stress, mastery, and social support are important mediators between social status and mental health outcomes. Stress appears to be a stronger contributor to distress while mastery and social support are of higher relative importance to wellbeing.

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