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Evolution of capstone


... Crockford DN, el-Guebaly N, 1998; Shaffer & Korn 2002 ... Public health model for communicable disease can be applied to gambling (Shaffer & Korn, 2002) ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Evolution of capstone

Evolution of capstone
  • In the beginning. . .

Evolution of Capstone
  • Mental health and health disparities
  • Hmong refugees and mental health issues
  • Tracked issue for one year (media reports,
    educational workshops, forums)
  • Compiled academic, government and agency research
  • Conducted interviews and wrote preliminary
    articles for class assignments

Evolution of Capstone Version 1
  • Mental health screening efforts of new Hmong
  • Screening tool/instrument
  • Observation of actual screening
  • Mental health programs and services for refugees
    (MN and Thailand)
  • Mental health and Hmong culture
  • Profiles of refugee families

Evolution of capstone
  • Council of Asian and Pacific Minnesotans
    legislative update (2/14/2005)
  • Advanced Reporting Methods-spring 2005
  • Class project about gambling
  • Finished overview article mid-March

Evolution of Capstone Version 2
  • Mental Health of new Hmong refugees
  • Casino Gambling Addiction in the Twin Cities
    Asian community
  • Overview policy article about mental health and

May 2005
Casino Gambling Addiction in the Twin Cities
Asian Community
  • Rachana Sikka
  • July 25, 2005

  • Background information
  • Rationale for focus on gambling
  • Background research, interview, writing and
    follow-up processes
  • Components of article series
  • Challenges and ethical issues
  • Strengths and weaknesses
  • Publication Outlets
  • Conclusions

Gambling and Minnesota
Source www.mpr.org
Gambling and Minnesota
Two Indian tribes encouraged by gambling
discussion with Gov. Pawlenty MPR 10/28/2004
Pawlenty and northern tribes say gambling talks
were productive MPR 1/7/2005
Pawlenty, tribal leaders unveil casino
proposal MPR 3/4/2005
Work Life Jobs are casino plans silver
lining StarTribune 3/10/2005
Gambling Bills Pass Committee Test MPR
NATIONAL DESK March 31, 2005  As Gambling
Grows, States Depend On Their Cut to Bolster
Revenues New York Times    
  • Definition placing something of value at risk
    in the hopes of gaining something of greater
  • Wagering in casinos and on lotteries, horse and
    dog racing, card games, and sporting events

Epidemiology of gambling
  • Epidemiology (National Council on Problem
    Gambling, 2003)
  • Over 80 percent of U.S. adults have reported
    gambling at least once in the past year and done
    so responsibly
  • About one percent of adults (2 million people)
    meet the criteria of a pathological gambler
  • Two to three percent have less serious, but
    significant problems with gambling

Gambling as a (public) health issue
  • Pathological gambling
  • Impulse control disorder
  • High rates of comorbidity between substance use
    and gambling disorders
  • Increased rates of mental health disorders have
    been reported in problem and pathological
  • Higher suicide rates have been associated with
  • Sources Cunningham-Williams RM, Cottler LB,
    1998 Compton III WM, Spitznagel EL, 1998
    Cunningham-Williams RM, Cottler LB, 2001
    Crockford DN, el-Guebaly N, 1998 Shaffer Korn

Gambling as a (public) health issue
  • Public health model for communicable disease can
    be applied to gambling (Shaffer Korn, 2002)

Person who chooses to gamble
Money, credit or something else of value
Specific gambling activity
Microenvironment gambling venue, family, local
community Macroenvironment socioeconomic,
cultural, social policy and political context
(Gordis, 2000)
Gambling and Asians
  • Asian groups in the U.S. show higher rates of
    gambling disorders compared with other groups
    (Handbook of Asian American Psychology, 1998)
  • Prevalence surveys of Chinese immigrants to
    Western countries
  • Montreal 5 problem gamblers, 2 pathological
    gamblers (Lesieur HR, Blume SB, 1987)
  • Calgary 8 problem gamblers (Lo J, 1996)
  • Sydney 10 pathological gamblers (Blaszczynski
    A, Huynh S, Dumlao VJ et al, 1998)
  • Lifetime prevalence of pathological gambling in a
    sample of Southeast Asian refugees 59 percent
    (Petry NM, Armentano C, Kuoch T, Norinth T, Smith
    L, 2003)

Gambling and Asians in Minnesota
  • A report on the effects of problem gambling on
    Southeast Asian families and their adjustment to
    life in Minnesota (1996)
  • Exploratory field study by the CAPM

Gambling and Asians in Minnesota
  • Gambling among Southeast Asians living in
    Minnesota has led to considerable financial and
    emotional problems resulting in increased debt,
    family stress, loss of homes, incidents of
    divorce, neglect of children and even deaths.
    (CAPM, 1996)

Focus on gambling and Asians
  • Timely
  • Effective hook
  • Fresh angle
  • Localized
  • Multi-dimensional issue
  • Medical/psychological, political, social,
    economic and cultural aspects

Background Research
  • Literature search
  • PubMed/Medline, PsychInfo, Current Contents
    (keywordsgambling and Asians)
  • Outside publications/reports
  • Governors Report on Compulsive Gambling A
    Report to the Minnesota Legislature (2004)
  • A report on the effects of problem gambling on
    Southeast Asian families and their adjustment to
    life in Minnesota (1996)

Background Research
  • Websites
  • Minnesota Department of Human Services
  • Minnesota Institute of Public Health
  • Minnesota Public Radio
  • Star Tribune
  • Minnesota State Lottery
  • Casino websites

Initial Contacts
  • CAPM Legislative liaison/research analyst
  • Gambling treatment provider lists
  • State-approved gambling treatment providers from
  • State and non-state approved providers from MN
    State Lottery
  • Southeast Asian Gambling Treatment Consortium
    Program manager
  • Lao Assistance Center Executive Director

Initial Contacts
  • Asked members of Council and Consortium, as well
    as gambling counselors about people who were
    dealing with gambling addiction
  • Marketing/Public Relations representatives of
    casinos (Mystic Lake, Grand Casinos, Treasure
  • Mystic Lake Hotel Casino employee

Table of Contacts
Interview Process
  • CAPM (phone interview)
  • Southeast Asian Gambling Consortium/Lao
    Assistance Center (face-to-face interviews)
  • Gambling counselors
  • Tried to interview gambling counselors who
    represented different segments of the Asian
    community (phone interviews)
  • Marketing/PR departments of Mystic Lake and
    Treasure Island casinos did not return phone

Interview Process
  • PR person at Grand Casino-Hinckley referred me to
    Goff Howard
  • Spoke with chairman in mid-March by phone
  • Visit to Mystic Lake Employees not willing to
  • Mystic Lake Hotel Casino employee interview
    through a personal contact
  • Phone interview
  • Was not able to interview someone of Asian
    descent who had a gambling problem
  • Located woman in the personal profile through
    program manager of Southeast Asian Gambling
    Consortium in mid-May
  • Face-to-face interview

  • Overview article
  • Highlight issue, raise awareness of problem
  • Bolster with academic/outside research and
    interviews with program managers and treatment
  • Discuss programmatic and legislative efforts
  • Narrative introduction to grab readers attention
  • Personal encounter at Mystic Lake
  • Personal profile sidebar

Follow-up Fact Checking
  • Overview article
  • Called back all sources at least once with
    follow-up questions, to double check facts and go
    over quotes
  • Especially important with sources representing
    casino perspectives
  • Personal Profile
  • Followed up with source 2-3 times to fact check
    and go over quotes

Overview Article
  • Casino Gambling Addiction in the Asian
  • 3,610 words
  • Personal observation
  • Research studies
  • Local (Lao Assistance Center)
  • Academic (Retry et al 2003)
  • Anecdotal/observational reports
  • Council of Asian and Pacific Minnesotans (CAPM)

Overview Article
  • Interviews
  • CAPM
  • Gambling counselors (Lao, Korean, Vietnamese,
  • Blackjack dealer/floor supervisor (Mystic Lake
    Hotel Casino)
  • Chairman of Howard Goff public
    relations/public affairs firm for Mille Lacs Band
    of Ojibwe
  • Programmatic/Legislative efforts
  • Southeast Asian Gambling Consortium

Overview Article Main findings
  • Higher than average incidence of problem gambling
    among Southeast Asian men and women
  • Also surfacing in Chinese and Korean communities
  • Limited education and language skills, low
    income, immigrant status, boredom and loneliness
    seem to factor into gambling
  • Difficult for counselors to do outreach
  • Sophisticated marketing efforts by casinos
  • Lack of entertainment options for people with
    limited English proficiency

Personal Profile
  • Untitled
  • 1,023 words
  • Local woman of Laotian descent
  • Stepmother, biological mother and husband with
    gambling addiction
  • To protect privacy, real names not used

Narrative Piece
  • Over the Buffet and through the Slot Machines
  • 1,432 words
  • Based on personal observation/encounter at Mystic
    Lake Hotel Casino
  • Conversation with woman of Taiwanese descent

  • Sensitive, emotionally charged issue
  • Cultural lens magnifies pre-existing stigma
  • Language barriers
  • Difficulty finding personal stories
  • Little published research and few experts
  • Achieving balance and objectivity
  • Easy to get swayed by emotions
  • Casino employees unwilling to talk
  • Programs vs. people

Ethical issues
  • Privacy/confidentiality
  • Mystic Lake Hotel Casino employee
  • People with gambling addiction and their families
  • Evoking sensitive/traumatic issues for sources
  • Personal account of Laotian woman
  • Equity
  • Giving equal voice to sources with limited
    English proficiency

  • Lack of connection to broader mental health
    and/or policy issues
  • Version 2 of capstone project
  • Did not profile someone with gambling addiction
  • Family member as proxy
  • Slightly skewed toward an advocacy tone?

  • Focused
  • Timely
  • Novel
  • An emerging issue
  • Respected the privacy of sources while still
    telling their stories
  • Captured issues and voices of minority

Publication Outlets
  • Ummm. . .
  • City Pages
  • Local specialty newspaper and/or magazine
  • Asian Pages?
  • Asian-American Press?
  • Pulse of the Twin Cities?
  • Minnesota Monthly?

  • Sensitive topics minority and/or immigrant
    populations time for trust to develop between
    journalist and source
  • Difficult to achieve under real-world deadline
  • Media can be an effective ally and intervention
    tool for health/human service professionals
  • Can ease the transition to more intense
    intervention and/or policy development

  • Public health knowledge helped to understand and
    interpret research, but sometimes hindered
    interview and writing processes
  • Knowledge of survey construction/research made
    interview preparation a headache
  • Hard-wired to write in an academic fashion
  • Need to publish articles before issue becomes

My final two cents
  • Honing my journalistic skills will be a lifelong
  • Journalism should be renamed Journeyism

Thanks a bunch!!!
  • Brian Southwell, Gary Schwitzer, Paul MacEnroe,
    John Finnegan
  • All named and unnamed sources, especially David
    Zander, Rick Devich, Sunny Chanthanouvong and
    Noriko Ishihara
  • Health journalism classmates
  • Parents and friends

Deal me any questions or comments
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