The 21st annual Black State Conference theme is “Black Males’ Health is Wealth.” Mental health will be one of the key topics that Indiana medical experts will touch on. The last two years have taken a toll on quite a few people when it comes to the pandemic, job loss, eviction and social unrest.

The Black community has been one of the hardest hit. The annual event aims to not only shine light on the issues, but show that seeking help is a sign of strength. “It’s important for Black males and males of color to understand that without their health, all of the material, all of the other things that they may feel are significant or important don’t matter,” James Garrett Jr., executive director, said.

He said that Black males are most likely to skip doctors visits. And living through a pandemic hasn’t helped much, either. “We’ve turned a corner with this pandemic — we now better understand the importance of our health and maintaining our health,” said Garrett.