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Taraji P. Henson gets emotional discussing ‘disproportionate affect’ COVID has on African-Americans

Taraji P. Henson spoke candidly on Friday about mental health amid COVID-19 and the disproportionate affect the virus has had on African-American communities. 

In her CNN interview, the 49-year-old star of Empire admitted that she is ‘blessed’ to be able to afford mental health care ‘without thinking,’ where as those in ‘disadvantaged neighborhoods’ lack the same luxury.  

‘So we created a virtual fund-raising campaign for free sessions for people of color and, you know, disadvantaged neighborhoods,’ said Henson.

Candid: Taraji P. Henson spoke candidly on Friday about mental health amid COVID-19 and the disproportionate affect the virus has had on African-American communities; Taraji (left) pictured on CNN on Friday

Candid: Taraji P. Henson spoke candidly on Friday about mental health amid COVID-19 and the disproportionate affect the virus has had on African-American communities; Taraji (left) pictured on CNN on Friday

Candid: Taraji P. Henson spoke candidly on Friday about mental health amid COVID-19 and the disproportionate affect the virus has had on African-American communities; Taraji (left) pictured on CNN on Friday

The mental health program is in partnership with Taraji’s Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation – whose sole purpose is to aid African-Americans and people of color during COVID-19.   

As Taraji spoke to CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Sanjay Gupta, a statistic remained plastered at the bottom of the screen that read: ‘African Americans make up almost one quarter of all deaths from COVID-19 in the U.S.’

‘When COVID happened, my heart went out and I just knew that people were suffering and they’re suffering alone in isolation,’ said Taraji, who remained visibly emotional throughout the duration of her interview.  

‘I’m blessed. I can call my therapist. I can pay for it without thinking about it, but what about those who can’t?’ 

Recognizing privilege: In her CNN interview, the 49-year-old star of Empire admitted that she is 'blessed' to be able to pay for mental health care 'without thinking,' where as those in 'disadvantaged neighborhoods' lack the same luxury; Taraji pictured in March

Recognizing privilege: In her CNN interview, the 49-year-old star of Empire admitted that she is 'blessed' to be able to pay for mental health care 'without thinking,' where as those in 'disadvantaged neighborhoods' lack the same luxury; Taraji pictured in March

Recognizing privilege: In her CNN interview, the 49-year-old star of Empire admitted that she is ‘blessed’ to be able to pay for mental health care ‘without thinking,’ where as those in ‘disadvantaged neighborhoods’ lack the same luxury; Taraji pictured in March

Creating change: 'So we created a virtual fund-raising campaign for free sessions for people of color and, you know, disadvantaged neighborhoods,' said Henson

Creating change: 'So we created a virtual fund-raising campaign for free sessions for people of color and, you know, disadvantaged neighborhoods,' said Henson

Creating change: ‘So we created a virtual fund-raising campaign for free sessions for people of color and, you know, disadvantaged neighborhoods,’ said Henson 

She hopes the free services offered by the Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation will have an impact on those suffering the most during these unprecedented times. 

Taraji could hardly hold back her tears in one portion of the interview, where she discussed the impact the death of George Floyd has had on communities across the United States.  

‘I’m so nervous. There is so much going on right now. My brain is just…,’ she began, while wiping her tears with a tissue.  

‘It’s just like, it won’t let up, you know? It’s like I’m trying to stop a bleeding wound and it just keeps bleeding, you know? But I’m raising money to help those who can’t.

George Floyd: Taraji could hardly hold back her tears in one portion of the interview, where she discussed the impact the death of George Floyd has had on communities across the United States

George Floyd: Taraji could hardly hold back her tears in one portion of the interview, where she discussed the impact the death of George Floyd has had on communities across the United States

George Floyd: Taraji could hardly hold back her tears in one portion of the interview, where she discussed the impact the death of George Floyd has had on communities across the United States

Trauma: 'It's tragic and it's traumatizing. And I mean, at this point it seems like we have to save ourselves…My hope is that we eradicate the stigma around mental health in the black community,' concluded Henson

Trauma: 'It's tragic and it's traumatizing. And I mean, at this point it seems like we have to save ourselves…My hope is that we eradicate the stigma around mental health in the black community,' concluded Henson

Trauma: ‘It’s tragic and it’s traumatizing. And I mean, at this point it seems like we have to save ourselves…My hope is that we eradicate the stigma around mental health in the black community,’ concluded Henson

‘It’s tragic and it’s traumatizing. And I mean, at this point it seems like we have to save ourselves…My hope is that we eradicate the stigma around mental health in the black community,’ concluded Henson.

Earlier this week, Floyd – an unarmed, African-American civilian – experienced a horrific death at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 

In the video footage of Floyd’s death, he is seen saying that he can not breathe as an officer – identified as Derek Chauvin – kneeled on his neck.

RIP: Earlier this week, Floyd - an unarmed, African-American civilian - experienced a horrific death at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota; George pictured on Rihanna's Instagram on Friday

RIP: Earlier this week, Floyd - an unarmed, African-American civilian - experienced a horrific death at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota; George pictured on Rihanna's Instagram on Friday

RIP: Earlier this week, Floyd – an unarmed, African-American civilian – experienced a horrific death at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota; George pictured on Rihanna’s Instagram on Friday 

Eventually he went silent and limp, and he was later declared dead.

Protests swelled after federal authorities said Thursday that they were making the case a top priority but announced no arrests at that time.  

Chauvin was finally taken into custody Friday and charged with third-degree murder, officials said. 

The death of 46-year-old Floyd has sparked days of sometimes violent demonstrations in Minneapolis and other US cities over police brutality against African-Americans. 

Protests: The death of 46-year-old Floyd has sparked days of sometimes violent demonstrations in Minneapolis and other US cities over police brutality against African-Americans; Protesters pictured on Thursday in Minneapolis

Protests: The death of 46-year-old Floyd has sparked days of sometimes violent demonstrations in Minneapolis and other US cities over police brutality against African-Americans; Protesters pictured on Thursday in Minneapolis

Protests: The death of 46-year-old Floyd has sparked days of sometimes violent demonstrations in Minneapolis and other US cities over police brutality against African-Americans; Protesters pictured on Thursday in Minneapolis

Source: Daily Mail – CNN News

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