Defining the minority stress scale of the cultural assessment for risk of suicide, for use with multiple minority groups

by Floyd, Rebecca M., Ph.D., PALO ALTO UNIVERSITY, 2013, 179 pages; 3591822


Minority stress is a significant risk factor for many mental and physical health concerns. Suitable screeners available for use by clinicians working with ethnic and/or sexual minority individuals at risk for minority stress are lacking The two-fold aim of this paper is to demonstrate the need for a minority stress screening tool (in terms of recognizing the suicide behavior risk facing minority populations as well as the relevance of minority stress to assessing for suicide behavior risk) and to provide empirical support for the use of the CARS Minority Stress scale, one component of a larger suicide behavior risk assessment and management tool, as an independent screener for minority stress. Analyses, including internal consistency, ANOVAs, nd hierarchical linear and logistic regressions, were performed on a database consisting of 1,085 people, with a focus on Caucasians, Asian Americans, African Americans, Latino/as, heterosexuals, and sexual minority individuals, gathered from university and community venues. The total Minority stress scale, as well as each of its 3 factor components (sexual minority stress, general minority stress, and acculturative minority stress) demonstrated satisfactory internal consistency. Minority status was linked to concern for suicide risk behavior, minority stress was related to suicide risk, and minority stress provided additional explanatory value as well as operated as an independent risk factor for suicide risk behavior, over and above minority status alone. Increased minority stress was in evidence for ethnic minorities versus Caucasians, and sexual minorities versus heterosexuals. The largest discrepancies were found between sexual minorities and heterosexuals, with the greatest effect sizes occurring on the total Minority Stress scale and the sexual minority stress subscale. To better inform the development and utility of the Minority Stress scale and its items, additional research should focus on testing this measure in clinical rather than community samples.

AdviserPeter B. Goldblum
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsClinical psychology
Publication Number3591822

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