Log in
Log in

  • Home
  • Spirit Injuries: Indigenous Perspectives of Mental Health

Spirit Injuries: Indigenous Perspectives of Mental Health

  • 12 Jan 2021
  • 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
  • Webinar

Ontario NEIHR January Webinar Series with Dr. Lynn Lavallee

by Waakebiness-Bryce Institute for Indigenous Health

Some Indigenous Nations on Turtle Island understand that ill-health stems from spirit injury. Related to this teaching are ways in which ill-health can be addressed, specifically through ceremony or spiritual practices. Advocates in the area of mental health, from the earlier consumer/survivor movement to more recent notions of madness and sanism have largely excluded Indigenous ways of understanding mental health, particularly as spirit injury. This presentation will discuss the exclusion of Indigenous ways of health and healing in mental health and offer ways in which advocacy and support can be garnered for Indigenous communities to address mental health in ways that are based on their unique cultural teachings.


Lynn Lavallee is Anishinaabe registered with the Metis Nation of Ontario. Lynn uses she/her pronouns. She explicitly positions herself in the academy, identifying her family and ancestry because of the cultural fraud that is emerging given opportunities being afforded to people who self-identify as Indigenous. Lynn's maternal ancestry includes the last names of Godon, McIvor, Swain, Lillie, Larocque, Labelle, Lafond and Courchesne from the Red River and Anishinaabe territories of Swan Lake, Maniwaki, Timmins and Sudbury. Her paternal relations include the last names Lavallee, Gauthier, Pepin, Richard, Taylor, McKaye and Champagne from the Metis and Anishinaabe territories of Temiscaming, Mattawa, Sudbury and Algoma.

Lynn completed a Bachelor of Arts in Kinesiology and Psychology, Master of Science in Community Health and Doctorate in Social Work. She started her career as an assistant professor at Ryerson University in the School of Social Work in 2005. She has taken on governance and administrative leadership roles including chair of the Research Ethics Board, associate director and acting director of the School of Social Work, senator, and many other service activities all with the focus of advancing Indigenous peoples and knowledges in the academy.Lynn served as University of Manitoba's first vice provost of Indigenous engagement in 2017. She resigned from this position after 16 months and returned to Ryerson University. She currently holds the position of strategic lead, Indigenous resurgence in the Faculty of Community Services. Her research expertise lies in the area of Indigenous research ethics, Indigenous research methodology, and Indigenous health and well-being. Lynn achieved full professor status in 2019.

Register Here

Copyright 2017 - Public Health Physicians of Canada  /  Médecins de santé publique du Canada

Site by Merge Creative Inc.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software