Tag Archives: SUICIDE

Lesley Dewar speaks about the GetUp candlelit vigil #vigil6100 and Johnathon Cooke live from Mission Australia’s Wintersleepout

Tanyia Maxted, John Cooke, Me & Lesley Dewar @ #wintersleepout 2010

Perth writer, activist and top tweeter Lesley Dewar

( @LesleyDewar on twitter ) joined us on 6PR to talk

about the upcoming Victoria Park Candle-lit vigil to remember

those lost to suicide and support those left behind.

Please click the blue link for the  interview with Lesley Dewar on the  Mental Health Vigil

Join us at Burswood Park this Tue Aug 10 at 5.30 pm and go to http://www.getup.org.au/community/gettogethers/series.php?id=29 for details and how your local community can take part.

John Cooke Interview for 6PR on the excellent Winter Sleepout

Mission Australia‘s Winter Sleepout is about raising funds and awareness of the thousands of children and adults living on the streets. Hear John Cooke from Professional Public Relations (@freocookster on twitter  ) as we cover why the sleepout isn’t about well off people sleeping “rough” for a few hours.

Also on 6PR Alex Kempthorne spoke to us about an upcoming event for the Green Network – a great group that brings resource companies and environmental firms together.

Alex Kempthorne from Liberty resources on the W.A. Green Network

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10 Common Myths About Clinical Depression – guest post

Oil on canvas
Image via Wikipedia

10 Common Myths About Clinical Depression

Almost every mental illness ends up accompanied by a barrage of myths, misunderstandings, and misconceptions that cloud the minds of the populace and ultimately produces muddied opinions of the true threat.

Unfortunately, one of the most marginalized and ridiculed conditions is also one of the most common. An estimated 17 million Americans suffer from some form of clinical depression a year, most of whom end up never seeking psychological assistance due to feeling undermined and discouraged by the perceptions of society at large.

Because those suffering from depression run a much higher risk of committing suicide or acts of self-mutilation than their comparatively healthier peers, it is absolutely integral to understand the complexities and widespread influence of the disease.

Only by making an earnest effort to combat these negative and patently false perceptions can the depressed begin to realize that no shame or weakness lay in their situation, thereby removing many of the stigmas and reservations still undeservedly attached to entering into therapy.

click the link below for the

10 Common Myths About Clinical Depression.

from Angela Petersen  at  http://onlinepsychologydegrees.org

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Hospital suicide: No room in mental health unit – ABC News Article link.

Hospital suicide: No room in mental health unit

Monday, November 2, 2009

An inquest into the suicide of a patient has heard there was no room for him in the mental health unit of a south-west New South Wales hospital.

Former Win TV cameraman Justin Berkhour was found hanging behind the curtain of a cubicle in the Wagga Wagga Base Hospital emergency department in July 2007.

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from @perthtones’ iPhone

Mental Health Minister to address noon rally, can’t say what staff cuts have & will be made – Alison Xamon MLC Media Release

Alison Xamon MLC


PHONE (08) 9275 7474 – FAX (08) 9275 7574

The W.A. Mental Health Minister has told Parliament he doesn’t know what cuts to staff and services have been made in his portfolio as those behind the cuts of at last 13%,Troy Buswell and Colin Barnett, talk shopping hours.
mp3 audio cut 3 lays out the spin and distraction being put out by the Premier & Treasurer and runs 20 secs

Greens MLC Alison Xamon last night asked the Minister what cuts to staff and resources had been made and what cuts are coming. The reply was to the effect that it would take “some time” to provide answers.
mp3 audio Alison on his reaction and runs 25 secs

Ms Xamon also moved an Urgency Motion, supported by the Opposition, calling on the Government to spell out its plans for the sector.
mp3 Audio Ms Xamon explaining that the Mental Health Minister has little Idea what his Premier and Treasurer have done and have planned – runs 23 secs

Organisers of the midday rally to overturn the dedly cuts say they’ve been approached by the Minister, asking if he can speak to them as they deliver a petition to the Lower House.
mp3 Audio Alison on people in the public and private sector being fed up with spin and lack of answers to urgent questions – runs 22 secs

It will be worthwhile sending reporters and cameras to the midday rally to see what happens, and to interview the Auditor General who’s due to issue a report on the prformance of the Mental Health Sector around 1pm.

mp3 audio  Alison lashing the rush to make cuts before the AG’s report is handed down, and the lack of consultation with stakeholders, staff, service providers and those who use mental health services – runs 13 secs

There will be people from public and private groups like, the HSU, WAAMH, MHC, COMIC, RUAH etc, as well as the Minister, Shadow Minister, Alison Xamon, Many of my dear 6PR listeners and Twitter friends will be there too because this is life or death for many west australians and the damage will be almost impossible to undo.


please call talkback radio TODAY ( 6PR 922 11 882 )   You can also email Colin Barnett at wa-government@dpc.wa.gov.au or  Treasurer Troy Buswell at Minister.Buswell@dpc.wa.gov.au or call the Premier’s office today on 9222 9475, Troy Buswell’s office is 9222 9111  ( contact details are from the public WA Government website )

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Media ban on reporting Suicide – a deadly mistake ( see also abc story on 60 minutes being gagged )

suicide is painful
Image by Aaron Edwards via Flickr

The ongoing silence in the media about suicide is being challenged by 60 minutes and supported by website advocacy group Beyond Blue (see abc.net.au story here)

As a long time advocate for mental health and suicide prevention I support a change in the deadly silence.

The only real debate is the nature of change to reportage and education.

A now-unused machine that facilitated euthanas...
Image via Wikipedia

It is particularly galling to hear cries of ” let’s protect potential suicides by not mentioning it” even as the media continues to almost champion the activities of the Euthenasia proponent known as Dr Death with tragic consequences.

And in simple terms we can ask ” well how’s that working for ya?” as yet another school community is wracked by unwell youngsters taking their own lives. Their being “protected” from truthful reporting of the issues didn’t work out so well.

Stigma is deadly, and it thrives in a vacuum of i

Day 64: March 4, 2008- Screaming For Freedom
Image by ashley.adcox via Flickr

nformation such as we have surrounding suicide. It’s time for the so-called ” sane” people in Government, Bureacracy and Services to “get over it” and stop perpetrating a culture of deadly denial.

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Nearly 9 in 10 Aussies stressed out: Lifeline ABC News Article link.

It’s time we spoke up about mental health as  a PRIORITY.

The old idea that depression affects 1 in 5 is CLEARLY under-estimating the epidemic of mental illness.

We in the media are banned from covering  suicides despite the toll being greater than road trauma, and air-time being given to dangerous quacks like “DR Death” Nietschke.

see the ABC item below for a WAKE UP call

Nearly 9 in 10 Aussies stressed out: Lifeline

Monday, July 13, 2009

Almost nine in 10 Australians are stressed and many say work is to blame, according to a national poll commissioned by Lifeline Australia.

The annual survey released today reveals 41 per cent of Australians are experiencing unhealthy levels of stress, and a whopping 87 per cent of the nation is experiencing some degree of stress.

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from @perthtones’ iPhone

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Fighting Depression on 2 wheels – West Australian man & motorbike prepping for BLACK DOG RIDE – to raise awareness, reduce stigma & suicide


Steve Andrews, from Busselton WA, will embark on a solo motorbike trip around Australia on 26th July 2009 to raise community awareness about depression, one of the most common of all mental health problems

Currently, it is estimated that:

  • around one million adults are living with depression each year in Australia.

  • in addition 100,000 young people suffer from depression and the number is growing

  • one in five people people experience depression at some stage of their lives.

The devastating impact of depression has been experienced first hand by Steve, who has lost his mother and two close friends to suicide following long battles with depression.
Many people, including Winston Churchill, have referred to depression as their ‘black dog’ and as such, Steve has named this project the Black Dog Ride http://www.blackdogride.com.au/ .

As he travels around the country on Highway 1, he will combine his passion for motorbikes and a long held dream of riding around Australia with a growing desire to raise awareness about the impact of depression and the resources available to fight it.

Steve will also be raising money for the Suicide Call Back Service run by Crisis Support Services. The Suicide Call Back Service http://www.suicidecallbackservice.com.au/ is a free, nationwide telephone service that offers short to medium term support for people at risk of suicide, their carers, and those bereaved by suicide.

How can you help?

1. Take a moment out of your busy life to visit the website www.blackdogride.com.au , learn a little more about the project and raise your own awareness of depression and what we can do to beat it.
2. Make a donation to support the Suicide Call Back Service. Every dollar is appreciated and your support saves lives.
3. Most importantly, do your bit to raise awareness by forwarding this email to your family, friends and associates. Remember, chances are that 1 in 5 of the people in your contacts file will suffer from depression at some time during their life. You are unlikely to know who it will be so please forward this email to your complete address book.

Steve Andrews firmly believes that by being more aware of depression and by talking about it we can break down the stigma attached to mental illness and really make a difference for people suffering from this debilitating condition and for those at risk of suicide.

The ride starts from the Goose Cafe at the Busselton Jetty , 9.30 Sunday morning 26 July. Come on down and wave Steve off on his epic journey.

Thank you.
Black Dog Ride

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