Dr. Flora Matheson

Dr. Flora Matheson is a medical sociologist and mental health and addictions specialist. Using a gender lens, she investigates the social determinants of mental health, substance and alcohol use, homelessness, problem gambling, and criminal justice involvement.

Dr. Matheson’s work investigating the links between health and criminalization/the justice system have highlighted important risk factors for imprisonment. For example, her research found that young adults (18-28) with traumatic brain injury are at increased risk of incarceration. She is currently evaluating the health effects of a program to support people after leaving correctional institutions.

Dr. Matheson was one of the first researchers in Canada to investigate and measure the strong relationship between problem gambling and homelessness. She and Good Shepherd Ministries co-developed and launched the first gambling-addiction program for people who are homeless.

She also co-developed the Ontario Marginalization Index, a small-area based measure of marginalization widely used by policy planners and researchers in Ontario.

Dr. Matheson is a MAP scientist, a scientist with the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute and an adjunct scientist with the ICES Mental Health and Addictions Program. She is an associate professor with the University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health as well as Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies. She leads the Justice and Equity Lab, housed at MAP.