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In Fall 2020, WUSF began reporting on how distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine exposes inequities in Florida's health care system. Our stories focus on the voices of residents in communities of color and how Florida's handling of the coronavirus pandemic and vaccine distribution affects them.WUSF’s reporting on disparities in health care access is funded in part by the COVID-19 Response Initiative of Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation and Gulf Coast Community Foundation.

We highlight the latest Unequal Shots story on African Americans and mental health

Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Listen in: On Florida Matters, Steve Newborn talks with reporter Stephanie Colombini, who wrote the story, as well as two community advocates.

This week, we look at the latest from WUSF’s ongoing Unequal Shots project.

The pandemic continues to stress the mental health of many people. But it's been especially hard for some Black Americans, who have been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus and already faced barriers to care.

First, host Steve Newborn talks with Stephanie Colombini, who wrote the story, and Dr. Angela Hill of USF’s Taneja College of Pharmacy.
RELATED:The pandemic strained mental health for Black Americans. It’s also amplifying calls for change

Later on, he speaks with LaDonna Butler, founder of the Well for Life in St. Petersburg. Butler, a licensed mental health counselor who has a doctorate in counselor education and supervision, was featured in Colombini’s story.

She organized a weekend-long summit this past summer called "Healing While Black" to raise awareness about mental health for people of color in the Tampa Bay area. Held over four days, the event took place in different spaces including a barber shop and a community block party to create a safe space for tough conversations about mental health.

In these additional excerpts from her interview with Newborn, Butler talks about the impact that The Well for Life and events like “Healing While Black” have on the local African American community.

You can read more about the Unequal Shots serieshere.

And you can listen to Steve’s conversations with Colombini, Hill and Butler by clicking on the “Listen” button. Or you can listen on the WUSF app under “Programs & Podcasts.”

Copyright 2021 WUSF Public Media - WUSF 89.7

Dinorah Prevost is a WUSF Public Media news intern for summer 2018.
Steve Newborn is WUSF's assistant news director as well as a reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.