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Advocating for Indigenous Genius, Indigeneity and Wellbeing


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*[REBLOGGED] School authorities not to be quizzed in student’s suicide case

School authorities not to be quizzed in student’s suicide case

The case of a Grade 10 girl student from National Public School, HSR Layout, committing suicide on Monday after being reprimanded by her principal for getting close with a male classmate, has brought to the fore the increasingly sensitive nature of teenagers.

Alarmingly, recent months have seen a number of such cases of suicides or attempted suicides by teenagers and adolescents in the City, which is a huge cause of worry.

Monali Mohala (15) had been getting close with a male classmate, who also lived in the same apartment complex where she lived in Bommanahalli. On Monday, the school authorities suspended Monali for a day and a half for “disciplinary misdemeanor” and asked her mother to pick her daughter up. After coming home, the teen locked herself up in her room in their 10th floor flat and jumped out of the French window soon after.

When asked if any action will be initiated against the school, Alok Kumar, Additional Commissioner of Police (Law and order) said: “The Madiwala police have registered a case of suicide. But the school authorities will not be summoned as there is no case against them.”

Meanwhile, taking suo motu notice of the incident, the Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (KSCPCR) has asked the police and Block Education Officer to conduct a probe and file report about the incident. “We have also asked the child welfare committee to initiate a similar move,” said Fr Edward Thomas, a member of the Commission.

Dr Manjula M, Assistant Professor Psychology Department, Nimhans said that a combination of factors that includes a change in the family system, temperament of a child – whether or not he/ she is impulsive, lack of a confidant might lead to a child taking such a step.

“The teenage and adolescent years are usually full of high emotions and in such situations they need great attention. Depression is certainly on the rise among adolescents and this might be due to a number of reasons. When a teenager decides to take such a step, it is a moment’s decision and there is no long-term thinking,” she said.

Dr Mahesh Gowda, psychiatrist from Spandana, said that adolescents these days are taught more about academics and being competitive than about life skills that greatly puts pressure on them: “There is too much emphasis on academics rather than just being happy. Children are not taught life skills such as decision making, how to handle peer pressure etc. Added to this there is no close dialogue between parents and children,“ he said.

*REBLOGGED due to trigger in original article (PIC)

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Violence against women and its link with sports – HT @JackHockman

SAY NO TO MAYWEATHER
IT IS TIME ALL SPORTING CODES SAID NO MORE
Just when you thought the disrespect from sporting codes for women could get no worse we get the announcement of Floyd Mayweather to tour Australia. He surely is the poster boy for Violence against women a history of violence, that not even incarceration could change his attitude to women. As a boxing fan the shame that he and those grubby promoters behind this tour bring to the sport is beyond belief. At a time when boxing in Australia is on the verge of a new revival led by so many who do the right thing with dedication, hard training and respect for others that we should go down the road of disrespectful charlatans who put themselves before all others is a disgrace. I have e-mailed the Immigration Minister Peter Dutton urging him to not allow this tour to happen and I urge you to do the same. The address is minister@immi.gov.au

It is not only boxing that has this type of Issue it is virtually every sporting code and it is time we all played a part in the changing of that attitude. This is not just about respect for women but also about what we want our next generation of men to be by stopping Mayweather coming to Australia is a message that our youth need to see. As I said it is not just boxing it is all codes that must change and that change must start with us the fans following is a few examples and my thoughts of changes that must happen to help end the cycle of violence against women. Sports people should never be the role models, parents should be, however if children observe their parents and society cheering these people who should be pariahs then we will see the cycle continue.
Where to start when looking at other codes would seem obvious with the actions of the NFL this year. Where there were so many cases and different often bewildering responses to domestic violence and other issues. Most would of seen the Ray Rice incident where he knocked his then fiancé now his wife out in an elevator well Ray Rice is free to play again in the NFL after his appeal was upheld. The fact that initially his suspension was only 2 weeks should be the commissioners reason to resign, however this won’t happen as neither he nor the NFL ownership groups have any respect for women, Other than as a revenue source or as trophies for these billionaires and millionaires to display.
All codes have histories of protecting the perpetrators of violence against women and victim blaming at their core. The fact that the worst offenders are also the major codes in their countries or provinces from NFL in the USA, to Association football in many countries, and shamefully, in Australia, the NRL, and AFL. All of these codes have sham Womens days or rounds where they in an attempt to drag more $$$$ into their pockets claim to show respect for women.
2 / 3
So where does the responsibility lie, with the Judiciary, leagues, broadcasters, sponsors, clubs, players, or in truth the fans. All are culpable in their willingness to defend the star player while trampling on the dignity of all women.
For the Judiciary it should be easy prosecute and sentence when found guilty. Unfortunately it doesn’t happen that way. Fan boy judges have made a mockery of the legal system to such a point that I could not use the term justice system, as for women who have been abused and subjected to violence by players there is no justice.

For the leagues themselves it is time they realized that their continuing to allow those who commit these acts to have the privilege of playing must end. The excuses used to justify these offenders to continue to play would be laughable, but assaulting women is no laughing matter. The parade of players who‘s wives girlfriends withdraw or don’t press charges is endless, and the pressure put on these victims is a disgrace.
The Broadcasters while ever they continue to have a blokes culture and jobs for the boys mentality, the story will remain the same. Watch most shows based around the players and ex-players and if you get ten minutes in without having at least one sexist comment I would be amazed.
The advertisers and sponsors must be made to see that endorsing abuse of women by allowing their corporate brand to be associated with Leagues and teams, who condone this abuse, will eventually leave a stain on their brands too large to ignore.
That clubs in the week that they were endorsing White Ribbon Day were signing or in the throes of wooing offenders to their clubs. This far more than their empty words show the true nature of the clubs opinion of women and where they stand in the game.
The players again so many players made statements on White Ribbon Day of No to Violence against Women. These same players who happily play with offenders, and so quickly anytime that one of their teammates offend leap to his defense, while just as quickly sowing the seeds for victim shaming so that their thug mate walks free.
The fans are perhaps the worst of all, for if the fans stop accepting this behavior from all the preceding groups change will happen. If a Player offends or is happy playing with offenders don’t cheer them. If your club plays offenders don’t buy memberships or merchandise. If advertisers and sponsors are unwilling to make a moral stand don’t buy their products. If broadcasters refuse to change their practices change the channel. If leagues won’t take action simply don’t go to games in particular rep football, where it clearly falls on the league, if they allow offenders to play at that level. The judiciary here to we the fans can make a change, let Governments know that we will not accept sentencing that is of another standard for players. These Judges must be held to account and the only way we can ensure this is through the ballot box if governments don’t act.
3 / 3
It is clear that all of us are to blame, in some way judges, leagues players, fans and the rest but in all this there is one group not to blame nor should they ever be blamed and that is the Victims.
Say no to Violence Against Women say no to Victim Shaming.


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The Call To Action – Indigenous LGBTI Suicide Prevention (video)

The Call To Action – Indigenous Suicide Prevention

The suicidality of the Aborginal and Torrres Strait Islander LGBQTI people is an unknown. International ananlytis shows that at the intersection of being both Indigenous/First Nation/NAtive and of LGBQTI indentity places us as the most at risk group in the world.
Your support can help respond to that. It will help save lives and increase the quality of life for so many.

Our Video 

See more at: http://startsomegood.com/blackrainbow

Suicide in first nations LGBTI community has not been widely spoken of, or included in health promotion – Radio Interview on @LivingBlakSBS 

http://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/aboriginal/highlight/page/id/384379/t/Black-Rainbow-LGBTI-Suicide-Support/in/english

The Black Rainbow Living Well Foundation aims to support Indigenous LGBTI Australians in living well. 

QUITE tragically, as you are reading these first few words there is a high probability somebody will attempt to end their life by suicide. There is even a higher probability that that somebody is part of the LGBTI community, particularly if they are at the point of self-realisation and disclosure. If that person is an Indigenous Australian, the probability amplifies yet again.

How do I know this? Because that’s what the evidence suggests. LGBTI people are said to have the highest rates of self-harm and suicide of any population in Australia. Same-sex attracted Australians are said to exhibit up to 14-times-higher rates of suicide attempts than their heterosexual peers. Yet, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there were 996 suicides reported across Australia between 2001 and 2010 among Indigenous peoples. We are told that 1.6 per cent of all Australians die by suicide but for Indigenous peoples, this rate is more than 4.2 per cent, or one in every 24.

How do I know this? Because that’s what the evidence suggests. LGBTI people are said to have the highest rates of self-harm and suicide of any population in Australia. Same-sex attracted Australians are said to exhibit up to 14-times-higher rates of suicide attempts than their heterosexual peers. Yet, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there were 996 suicides reported across Australia between 2001 and 2010 among Indigenous peoples. We are told that 1.6 per cent of all Australians die by suicide but for Indigenous peoples, this rate is more than 4.2 per cent, or one in every 24.

As mentioned, the evidence only suggests this because we are coalescing the data from two different groups and hypothesising the math. In other words we aren’t really sure.

But we need too be sure. We need to know.

Internationally we know that 47.3% American Indian and Alaskan Native adolescent men in Minnesota who identified as gay had considered suicide, compared with 23.6% of their straight peers, and that 23.2% of gay youth had attempted suicide, compared with 11.1% of their straight peers. These are fearful statistics of lives lost and lives in distress.

Determining the size of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender population is difficult. However, recent studies by Gates and Newport (2012) in the United States estimated the percentage of Americans who identify as LGBTI at approximately 3 to 4 per cent.

According to the ABS, “Within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population there were an estimated 294,000 children and young people, representing 4.2 per cent of the total Australian population aged 0 to 24 years.” Therefore in using the American figure of 3 to 4 per cent, there is potentially  10,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander who are LGTBI and whose needs are yet to be identified and met.

Phase 1

Creation of The Black Rainbow National Leadership Group

*** A national scoping project will be facilitated by myself and relevant stakeholders to engage a reference group of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who identify as either Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Queer, Trans and/or Intersex (LGBQTI); Including Brotherboy and Sistergirl. Membership will also extend to an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person who identifies as Heterosexual.

*** The name of this group will be The Black Rainbow National Leadership Group.

The Black Rainbow National Leadership Group will:

*** Connect and identify key stakeholders to generate discussion with and create relationships.

*** Identify a national support stakeholder network that is able to undertake half-day workshops to determine the health issues, healing needs and the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI persons, and

*** As a group we will travel to Canberra in the second half of 2015 to meet with government and non-government departments and organisations for guidance and financial assistance and to make The Black Rainbow Living Well Foundation a reality.

*** The Monies raised above and beyond $25,000 will go toward a national gathering for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBTI persons. The gatheirng will be to workshop reponses to the health issues, healing needs

Phase 2 

To date my (joint) proposal “Intersecting Indigenous Rainbows – International LGBT First Nations and Two-Spirited People in Suicide Prevention” has been accepted for presentation and workshop by the Scientific Committee of the International Association for Suicide Prevention. This is a collaborative international workshop to be co-facilitated by a Two-Spirit Aboriginal Canadian.

I will attend the 28th World Congress of the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) to be held from June 16th to 20th, 2015 in Montreal.

I intend to visit with other leaders in Indigenous suicide prevention across Canada in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Winnipeg and Ontario including those working specifically with Two-Spirit people. These plans are already underway.

In 2015 a self funded insider research paper I undertook and wrote titled “Voices from the Black Rainbow: The inclusion of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI Sistergirl and Brotherboys people in health, wellbeing and suicide prevention strategies” will also published.

Phase 3 

Co-write a report and produce the first ever, international document on the comparative analysis of social determinants of health facing Indigenous LGBQTI and how to best enhance resilience, at a global and community level. We will draw on the preliminary findings of the workshop in Montreal.

We intend to deliver this report, in person, to the United Nations for consideration.

Phase 4 

The Black Rainbow National Leadership Group will identify a national network of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and stakeholders to support and assist in a 
national gathering of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI persons that will determine, and unpack appropriate and agreed healing activities which can generate empowerment, healing and leadership that will inform national health plans and strategies.

This will also be when we will travel to Canberra.

Phase 5 

If successful in meeting with these stakeholders the national workshops will be rolled out and will inform a localised briefing paper identifying the issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI community.

This paper will be used as an advocacy tool for the national gathering with members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI community.

This gathering will be an opportunity to unpack the issues (highlighted in the briefing paper) and identify best practice responses.

A Call to Action

The suicidality of the Aborginal and Torrres Strait Islander LGBQTI people is an unknown. International ananlytis shows that at the intersection of being both Indigenous/First Nation/NAtive and of LGBQTI indentity places us as the most at risk group in the world.

Your support can help respond to that. It will help save lives and increase the quality of life for so many.

You can follow us at Black Rainbow on Facebook www.facebook.com/BlackRainbowAustralia

We are also on Twitter @BlkRnBow

Coming soon on Instagram blackrainbowaus

See more at: http://startsomegood.com/blackrainbow

Tipping Point Goal: $25,000

Total Funding Goal: $100,000

Tipping Point goal

Phases 1 – 3 will be achieved at tipping point

Phase 1 – Creation of The Black Rainbow National Leadership Group

Phase 2 – Delivering workshop at 28th World Congress of the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) to be held from June 16th to 20th, 2015 in Montreal

Phase 3 – Co-write a report and produce the first ever, international document on the comparative analysis of social determinants of health facing Indigenous LGBQTI and how to best enhance resilience, at a global and community level.

Once $25,000 has been reached all monies beyond will go toward achieving the following

Phase 4 

The Black Rainbow National Leadership Group will identify a national network of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and stakeholders to support and assist in a 
national gathering of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI persons that will determine, and unpack appropriate and agreed healing activities which can generate empowerment, healing and leadership that will inform national health plans and strategies.

Phase 5 

If successful in meeting with these stakeholders the national workshops will be rolled out and will inform a localised briefing paper identifying the issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI community.

This paper will be used as an advocacy tool for the national gathering with members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBQTI community.

This gathering will be an opportunity to unpack the issues (highlighted in the briefing paper) and identify best practice responses.

Ultimate goal

The ultimate is for the Black Rainbow Living Well Foundation to become a national entity.

From this campaign it is hoped to achieve national gathering for members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBTI community to attend to workshop solutions and ways forward to strengthen the social and emotional wellbeing (mental health) our community.

To achieve this we will need to deliver the finalized report to Canberra and have audience with the Australian government and other national stakeholders to rally support; both in kind and financial.

See more at: http://startsomegood.com/blackrainbow

Our Video 


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A welcomed response from WA Minister – Hon. Helen Morton. Thank you. Dameyon

A welcomed response from WA Minister H.Morton, thank you Dameyon
My letter to Minister Morton :
Dear Minister Morton,
I hope this finds you well.
We’ve met a couple of times. I came up to you at the SPA conference earlier this year to thank you for instigating the community action plan (CAP) approach to suicide prevention. We first met in Derby at the Aboriginal Medical Service. I was the Aboriginal CAP Coordinator for the Kimberley Region.
I’ve just seen your media release regarding funding for local Suicide Prevention projects.  As an Aboriginal Gay Man I am absolutely thrilled for this occasion. Currently, I am the only person in Australia working in the Indigenous LGBT suicide prevention space and this will assist so much. The rates of suicide of our particular group we are only able to hypothesise on because there has been no formal research. I work independently so I can focus on this issue.
My goal is to establish an National Foundation in the next  12 – 18 months to provide specifically to our group of people.
Approxamitaley 3 to 4 per cent of any population identifies as LGBTI, and therefore it is likely that 3 to 4 per cent of Aboriginal people identify as LGBTI.  So there are there are approximately 10,000 Aboriginal LGTBI people and our needs are yet to be identified and responded to. Our mental health and social emotional wellbeing is compounded by both our experiences as Aboriginal people and as LGBT people. I hav presented on this topic 7 times this year to highlight this issue. I am happy to say that Pat Dudgeon is a great advocate and too is Tom Calma, of the work I trying to achieve.
I wanted to personally reach out to you and say thank you. I am so glad this day has come and we can get on with saving more peoples lives.
I recently wrote an Op-Ed on Indigenous LGBT suicide prevention, I’ve attached for you to read.
Thanks again,
Dameyon
The Minister’s Response – Minster H.Morton


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Suicide in first nations LGBTI community has not been widely spoken of, or included in health promotion.

Suicide in first nations LGBTI community has not been widely spoken of, or included in health promotion.

Dameyon Bonson talks to Living Black Radio about his findings and why he works with the first nations Gay Lesbion, Bi, Trans and Intersex coomunity to prevent suicide and self harm, particularly for young people.

http://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/aboriginal/highlight/page/id/384379/t/Black-Rainbow-LGBTI-Suicide-Support/in/english


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Here’s Why Steve Jobs Didn’t Let His Kids Use iPads And Why You Shouldn’t Either

Here’s Why Steve Jobs Didn’t Let His Kids Use iPads And Why You Shouldn’t Either

If you fall within the Gen-Y era like us, chances are you’ve given a bunch of thought as to how you would raise your own children in this day and age (assuming you don’t have children already).

Especially with technology, so much has changed since our childhoods in the 90s. Here’s one question: Would you introduce the technological wonder/heroin that is the iPod and iPad to your kids?

Steve Jobs wouldn’t, and for good reason too.

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In a Sunday article, New York Times reporter Nick Bilton said he once assumingly asked Jobs, “So your kids must love the iPad?”

Jobs responded: “They haven’t used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.”

Especially in Silicon Valley, there is actually a trend of tech execs and engineers who shield their kids from technology. They even send their kids to non-tech schools like the Waldorf School in Los Altos, where computers aren’t found anywhere because they only focus on hands-on learning.

There is a quote that was highlighted in The Times by Chris Anderson, CEO of 3D Robotics and a father of five. He explains what drives those who work in tech to keep it from their kids.

“My kids accuse me and my wife of being fascists and overly concerned about tech, and they say that none of their friends have the same rules… That’s because we have seen the dangers of technology firsthand. I’ve seen it in myself, I don’t want to see that happen to my kids.”

If our current addictions to our iPhones and other tech is any indication, we may be setting up our children for incomplete, handicapped lives devoid of imagination, creativity and wonder when we hook them onto technology at an early age. We were the last generation to play outside precisely because we didn’t have smartphones and laptops. We learned from movement, hands-on interaction, and we absorbed information through books and socialization with other humans as opposed to a Google search.

Learning in different ways has helped us become more well-rounded individuals — so, should we be more worried that we are robbing our children of the ability to Snapchat and play “Candy Crush” all day if we don’t hand them a smartphone, or should we more worried that we would be robbing them of a healthier, less dependent development if we do hand them a smartphone? I think Steve Jobs had it right in regard to his kids.

So the next time you think about how you will raise your kids, you may want to (highly) consider not giving them whatever fancy tech we’ll have while they are growing up. Play outside with them and surround them with nature; they might hate you, but they will absolutely thank you for it later, because I’m willing to bet that’s exactly how many of us feel about it now that we are older.

Originally posted on The Mirror Post