Societal Stigmatization Towards Native Americans

Document Type


Publication Date



Social Work


This research was conducted under the BSSW Program and will be presented as a poster. When looking at a person, the first thing one notices is a person's sex and racial identity. Across the United States and more commonly in Midwestern states, there are known stigmatizations toward Native Americans. A majority of society is run by a hierarchy and it is clear that White Americans are at the top. Many individuals possess a desire to see the world as fair and legitimate, which can lead to one of many ways people begin to be discriminatory or racist towards racial minorities. Racial minorities that strongly identify with their group experience more prejudice and discriminatory racial acts than White Americans and those who do not strongly identify with their group. Although it is difficult to discern which racial group faces the most discrimination, it is understood that Native American individuals are at the top in terms of being racially stigmatized. The Native American population is 2.9 million people or 0.9% of the United States Population. Their population is lower than other racial minority groups, but that does not mean they do not experience the same or more discrimination directed toward their group. Discrimination is known and well recognized to be associated with poor physical and mental health, as well as creating social divisions and fear that undermine the success of society and economic progress. It is important to continue to conduct research to determine why Native Americans exhibit disparities in education and societal accomplishments, feelings of suicidal ideation, and higher levels of mental health illnesses. This research focuses on exploring how accepting the general public is of Native Americans, and if their stigmatization changes according to how different they are from social norms.

First Advisor

Peter Kindle

Research Area

Social Work

This document is currently not available here.