The Hidden Marginalization of Persons With Environmental Sensitivities

Gibson Pamela Reed. Ecopsychology. June 2016, 8(2): 131-137. doi:10.1089/eco.2016.0003.

Published in Volume: 8 Issue 2: June 27, 2016


This paper constructs persons with environmental sensitivities as comprising a hidden, marginalized group in technological culture that is paying a large price for our industrialized lifestyle. Due to the polluted nature of most public venues, this population is robbed of a sense of “place” necessary to maintain personal relationships. This population is marginalized by health-care providers and shunted into mental health categories, as our current health paradigms are not adequate to frame and categorize health problems caused by our toxic industrial lifestyle. The problem is discussed within the context of the pressures of capitalism, and examples are given of persons with environmental illness receiving mental health diagnoses (an attempted colonization) when they attempt to access mainstream health-care providers who lack knowledge or expertise regarding toxic-induced illness. 


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