Stigma & Behavioral Health in Urban Employers from China and the US
This project involved a collaborative endeavor between scholars from the United States and the People's Republic of China to study the effects of stigma associated with behaviorally-driven health disorders on employment-related discrimination. People with three such disorders were the focus of this study: psychotic disorders, alcohol abuse disorders, and HIV/AIDS. The study examined the attitudes and behaviors of employers using probability examples at three urban sites: Chicago, Beijing, and Hong Kong. Central research questions included why employers endorse stigmatizing beliefs about these disorders, how these attitudes result in withholding work opportunities, and how social and political variable mitigate employer attitudes and actions. First, intensive qualitative interviews were conducted with a diverse sample of employers at the three sites to explore the relative attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors related to hiring people with behavioral health conditions. Results from this qualitative study helped inform a quatitative study which tested social cognitive models of of employer perceptions of people with behaviorally-driven health conditions using a vignette assessment strategy and factorial survey design. This included examination of employer attributions of causal responsibility for the disorder; concerns about incompetence; and concerns about contagion. Finally the effects of socio-cultural factors (e.g. individualist vs. collectivist cultural orientation) on employer attitudes and behaviors vis-a-vis people with health related conditions were examined. Data from this study will be especially important for the development of future stigma-change programs.
Key personnel involved with this study included the following individuals:
The following are citations of articles and book chapters which have been published based on this research.
Jin, S, Tsang, H.W.H., Jiang, Y., Fong, M.W.M, & Corrigan, P.W. (2010). Comparing and contrasting employer concerns on people with substance abuse in Beijing, Hong Kong, and Chicago. Australian Journal of Rehabilitation Counseling, 16, 45-43.
Rao, D., Horton, R., Tsang, H., Shi, K., & Corrigan, P. (2010). Does individualism help explain differences in employers’ stigmatizing attitudes toward disability across Chinese and American Cultures? Rehabilitation Psychology, 55, 351-359.
Lam, C.S., Tsang, H., Corrigan. P., Lee, Y.T., Angell, B., Shi, K., Jin. S.H., Larson, J. (2010). Chinese Lay Theory and Mental Illness Stigma: Implications for Research and Practices, Journal of Rehabilitation, 76(1), 35-40.
Rao, D., Angell, B., Lam, C., Corrigan, P. (2008). Stigma in the workplace: Employer attitudes about people living with HIV/AIDS in Beijing, Hong Kong, and Chicago. Social Science and Medicine, 67 (10), 1541-1549.
Rao, D., Horton, R., Tsang, H., Shi, K., Corrigan, P. Does Individualism Help Explain Differences in Employers’ Stigmatizing Attitudes Toward Disability Across Chinese and American Cultures?
Tsang, H.W.H., Beth. A., Corrigan, P.W., Lee, Shi, K., Lam, C.S., Jin, S. & Fung, K.M.T. (2007). A cross-cultural study on employers’ concerns about hiring people with psychotic disorder: Implications for recovery. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 42, 723-733.
Tsang H.W.H., Corrigan, P.W., Shi, K., Lam, C.S., Jin, S., Chung, R.C.K., & Fung, K.M.T. (under review). Sino-American Employer Perspectives about Behaviorally-Driven Health Conditions: Predictive analyses. International Journal of Social Psychiatry.
Tsang, H.W.H., Chan, Y., Corrigan, P.W., Chung, R.C.K., & Shi, K. (in preparation). Determinants of hiring decisions in employers towards individuals with behavioral conditions: A SEM approach. Psychiatry Research.
Tsang, H.W.H., Fong, M., Fung, K.M.T., & Corrigan, P.W. (2010). Reducing employers’ stigma by supported employment. In Wagnorn, G., & Lloyd, C. (eds)., Vocational Rehabilitation and Mental Health, p.51-64, Australia: Blackwell Publishing.