Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Smith, Laurie


The purpose of this study was to explore the perception of mental health among the Latinx community to identify factors contributing to the underutilization of mental health services. This exploratory study conducted qualitative interviews with 16 Latinx individuals. Participants were recruited through a non-probability snowball sampling method. Qualitative data analysis revealed themes, subthemes, and reoccurring concepts through three main focus areas: overall knowledge of mental illness and services, perception toward reasons for mental illness, and respondents’ feedback to increasing utilization of mental health services. Major themes that surfaced in this study on the perceptions toward mental illness reflected culture such as views of non-existence, weak-mindedness, stigma, fear of judgment, and religion. At the macro social work practice level, study results help guide organizations in developing culturally competent policies and outreach programs directed at the Latinx community. At the micro social work practice level, these results help clinicians have a better understanding of Latinx perception of mental health to enhance the delivery of direct services.

Included in

Social Work Commons