Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Dr. S.M. Taylor


This thesis examines the factors contributing to the spatial distribution of community mental health facilities. It is a readily observable phenomenon that these facilities are concentrated within easily identifiable areas of the central city, yet the factors contributing to this pattern are not as easily discerned. This thesis argues that the ghettoisation of facilities is the product of a complex interaction of social and political forces that are intrinsically associated with the many dimensions of locational conflict. The nature of community response and the exercise of political power are key elements of this process. Both of these elements exhibit distinct socio-spatial characteristics. In light of this, the research goals of this thesis sought to identify whether systematic relationships exist between the concentration of facilities and community attitudinal and socio-environmental characteristics.

Metropolitan Toronto was the study area for this thesis. Socio-environmental data were collected measuring the major social and physical characteristics of the neighbourhoods under examination. Attitudinal data were taken from a major survey (1090 people) of attitudes toward the mentally ill and mental health facilities conduced in Toronto. The relationships of these variables to facility concentration were tested individually and in combination.

The results of the analysis indicated that the socio-environmental variables were more strongly related to facility concentration than the attitudinal variables. With respect to both sets of characteristics, areas of low concentration were most similar to one another and most different from areas of high concentration.

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