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LISTEN: As a nation focuses on Black people dying, a Tacoma mother navigates pain and worry

Tacoma activist Shalisa Hayes chooses, among other things, to sit out marches and protests for her own mental health. She talked with KNKX about navigating personal pain, mental health and activism.
Parker Miles Blohm
/
KNKX
Tacoma activist Shalisa Hayes chooses, among other things, to sit out marches and protests for her own mental health. She talked with KNKX about navigating personal pain, mental health and activism.

Americans have now lived through more than a week of intense national focus on Black people dying violently.

Tacoma activist Shalisa Hayes says, for some Black Americans, that barrage of news takes a personal toll.

Hayes lost her 17-year-old son to gun violence in 2011. She's known in Tacoma as a vocal advocate who was a driving force behind bringing a new $33 million community center to Tacoma's historically underserved East Side.

But Hayes says, at times like the past two weeks, she needs to be mindful of her own health.  

Among other things, she chooses to sit out marches and protests. Hayes spoke with KNKX's Will James about navigating personal pain, mental health and activism. You can listen to their edited conversation above.

Will James reports and produces special projects, including podcasts and series, for KNKX. He created and hosted the Outsiders podcast, chronicling homelessness in Olympia for more than a year, in partnership with The Seattle Times.
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