INDEPENDENT NEWS

Rainbow voices to the Government Inquiry into Mental Health

Published: Mon 7 May 2018 11:44 AM
RainbowYOUTH and #wearebeneficaries collaborate to bring rainbow voices to the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction
#OutLoud is a project inspired by #wearebeneficiaries, in response to the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction. The aim of this project is to share the stories and wishes of the queer, gender diverse, intersex, takatāpui, MVPFAFF or rainbow communities around Aotearoa’s mental health and addiction services.
The project is a collaboration between RainbowYOUTH and #wearebeneficaries, supported by Creative New Zealand and wants to assist the Inquiry Panel in highlighting one of the most vulnerable populations in Aotearoa when it comes to mental health and wellbeing.
“Our communities have limited statistics about our health outcomes as we are often left out of statistical collection,” RainbowYOUTH’s Communications Manager Toni Duder explains. “Of the limited statistics we do have, we can say that our young people are much more likely to experience significant depressive symptoms and attempt suicide ”.
#OutLoud aims to share our voices with the inquiry, with the hope that the future of our mental health system addresses and uplifts the wellbeing of rainbow communities. This will be done combining submissions from Aotearoa’s rainbow community with artwork from local artists to create a visually interesting and engaging picture of the rainbow community and their
The artworks will compiled online in a visual portfolio, and combined into a booklet which will be printed and presented to mainstream mental health organisations and the mental health inquiry panel to assist the ongoing work they are doing that includes the LGBTIQ community.
“We’re now in a place where our government is finally listening, responding, and signalling that welfare reform is on the table,” Sam Orchard, creator of #we are beneficiaries explains. “Valuing people’s real-life experiences creates change, and expressing stories through art is really hard to ignore.”
#OutLoud is seeking submissions from queer and gender diverse people answering one of the following questions:
What changes do you wish to see as a queer, gender diverse, intersex or rainbow person in regards to the mental health and addiction services in Aotearoa?
What is your experience as a queer, gender diverse, intersex or rainbow person in regards to the mental health and addiction services in Aotearoa?
Submissions can be made via the #OutLoud submission form: https://form.jotform.com/81198644083968
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