More than half of the Hispanic community reported experiencing election-related stress in the survey by the APA last month. For undocumented immigrants, those fears are likely to be even more acute, said Susan Macios, director of the Family Counseling Clinic at the Hispanic Family Center of Southern New Jersey in Camden, N.J. “Our Mexican population has been expressing anxiety about deportation,” she said, adding that a Trump victory could send many of them into hiding.
The “election cycle has unleashed negativity and somehow given license to be mean and hateful. It has left deep scars on our society,” says Farha Abbasi, an assistant professor of psychiatry at Michigan State University and the managing editor for Journal of Muslim Mental Health. Verbal and physical attacks on Muslims, and even on people mistaken for Muslims, have caused mental trauma for an entire segment of American citizenry, she said.
A report from Georgetown University (PDF) found that hate crimes against Muslims have spiked over the course of the presidential election. “We’re not imagining it,” Abbasi said. “It’s happening.”
Anxieties run deep as people of all ages and levels of religious observance find their loyalties being questioned, she said, pointing to the unvarnished bigotry triggered in some quarters by Trump’s candidacy.