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GLB Suicide
                  Problems In Australia and New Zealand?

  To "Attempted Suicide" Results For Homosexually Oriented Males & Females: More Than 140 Studies!
 
At Another Website (Includes Transgender Study Results)

To "Attempted Suicide" Study Results From Australia & New Zealand! (This Webpage)

Webpage Author Comment: It has been my experience that GLB communities have preferred to ignore GLB
Youth Suicide Issues in a way that essentially stated: 'We don't care. They make us look BAD!'
Dr. Rob Cover (
The University of Adelaide
) speaks to this in a 2010 paper. Excerpts.
A Valuable Warning by Warren Blumenfeld for America... that unfortunately omits the above issue.
An American Gay Suicidality Researcher With a "They Make Us Look Bad" Ideology!

A World First! - - Jacobs R, Morris S (2016). National LGBTI Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Strategy:
A New Strategy for Inclusion and Change: An Australian Government initiative.
Related Article. Document PDF Download.
 
A possible suicide related issue: Racism in Predominantly White GLB Communities (Alternate Link).

Rosenstreich G (2010). Excluded from the table: LGBT health and wellbeing. Health Voices:
Journal of the Consumer Health Forum of Australia Issue 6, April.
PDF Download.
"Although rates of depression, suicidal ideation, and self-harm are between 3.5 and 14 times higher for LGBT people than any other population...
neither the National Mental Health Strategy, nor the National Suicide Prevention Strategy, mention this group. In their recent position paper,
Suicide Prevention Australia made a series of strong recommendations, including inclusive and specific LGBT initiatives funded under the National Suicide Prevention Strategy...
National LGBT Health Alliance Australia:
List of Alliance publications available for download that relate specifically to mental health and suicide.

The National LGBTI Mental Health & Suicide Prevention Project

Suicide Prevention Australia's Position Statement (2009, PDF Download):
Suicide and Self-Harm Among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Communities

It looks like there was much "We Have Been Ignoring & Killing GLBT" guilt in Australia in 2009-2010.
No such concerns yet in Canada:
Gay teens 'terrorized' in Canada's schools (2009, Study). Related: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.
Egale Canada. (2009). Youth speak up about homophobia and transphobia. PDF Download. Summary.
Jamie Hubley, Gay 15-Year-Old Ottawa, Canada (2011). Related: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.
"I hate being the only open gay guy in my school… It f***ing sucks, I really want to end it. Like all of it, I not getting better
theres 3 more years of highschool left, Iv been on 4 different anti -depressants, none of them worked. I’v been depressed since january,
How f***ing long is this going to last. People said “It gets better”. Its f***ing bull****. I go to see psychologist,
What the f*** are they suppost to f***ing do? All I do is talk about problems, it doesnt make them dissapear?? I give up."

It Gets Better Project. - Related Thesis. - The “It Gets Better Campaign”: An unfortunate use of queer futurity.
Why should LGBTQ students have to wait for it to get better? We have the power to make it better now.
School should not be about survival. PDF.
Jamey Rodemeyer Suicide (2011): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Anti-gay bullying leads to another tragic teen suicide (2011): Nicholas Kelo Jr... was 13 years old.
It is unknown as to whether or not Nick was gay, but that did not stop his bullies or their attacks... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

Gay teen Lance Lundsten's death ruled a suicide (2011): 1, 2, 3.
New study shows that before things “get better,” there are consequences.
Do GLBT Teens Continue to be "Terrorized" in Most Australian and New Zealand Schools?
Does it ever really get better? (2011)
Negative gay community description, with the white racism missing.

The 2011 University GLB Student Suicidality & Deliberate Self-Injury Alert!

[D]epression, suicide and HIV/AIDS were seen as the most important health issues affecting the LGBTI community...
 The health of LGBTI people is rarely considered by mainstream agencies, despite poorer health outcomes. Sensitive and targeted public health
interventions that resonate with the community and that acknowledge the impact of being part of this marginalised group are required.
Comfort J, McCausland K (2013). Health priorities and perceived health determinants among Western Australians attending the 2011 LGBTI Perth Pride Fairday Festival. Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 24(1): 20-5. Abstract.


On This Webpage:
Australia
- New Zealand.

Archived Webpage Section: 1998-2003 - Homophobia - Aboriginal GLBT Information.

GLBT Information Excerpts from The 2009-2010
Senate Community Affairs References Committee Inquiry into Suicide in Australia


GLBTI suicide prevention programs announced (Victoria, 2011).
Mental Health Minister Mary Wooldridge today announced the LBTI youth suicide prevention initiatives
that will be funded under a $4 million Coalition Government election commitment.


Queer Youth Suicide: On Bullies, Love, And Homophobia: Against ‘Bullying’ or On Loving Queer Kids (2010): "So when faced with something so painful and complicated as gay teen suicide, it’s easier to go down the familiar path, to invoke the wrath of law and order, to create scapegoats out of child bullies who ape the denials and anxieties of adults, to blame it on technology or to pare down homophobia into a social menace called "anti-gay bullying" and then confine it to the borders of the schoolyard. It’s tougher, more uncertain work creating a world that loves queer kids, that wants them to live and thrive. But try-try as if someone’s life depended on it. Imagine saying I really wish my son turns out to be gay. Imagine hoping that your 2-year-old daughter grows up to be transgendered. Imagine not assuming the gender of your child’s future prom date or spouse; imagine keeping that space blank or occupied by boys and girls of all types. Imagine petitioning your local board of education to hire more gay elementary school teachers."
Staunton, Shawn (2011). Shooting ourselves in the foot: discrimination in the LGBT community. HIV Australia, 7(3): 35-37. PDF Download. The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community is one environment that common sense argues would be without prejudice. While huddled together under a rainbow umbrella of safety, security and inclusion, how can one group of persecuted people go on to discriminate against members of the same group in so called ‘safe environments’? How is it that a gay man who is denied the same rights as straight people, who is publicly humiliated and even physically attacked based on his sexuality, then goes on to discriminate against another gay man based on the colour of his skin, or his religion, or discriminates against a lesbian basedon her gender? How can a group that is subject to fear and ignorance experience fear and ignorance of transgender people? This is a question that the Queensland Association for Healthy Communities was seeking to understand when it rolled out its 2007 Pride Festival community campaign and its discrimination in the LGBT community survey... In surveying the community, people identified experiencing negative outcomes such as suicidal thoughts and depression, low self-esteem and anxiety as a result of discrimination from other LGBT people. Along with self-harm, suicide attempts and drug and alcohol dependence are all effects which have been linked with the experience of prejudice and discrimination...



Sent(a)Mental Project - A Memorial to GLBTIQA Suicides / Final Version (2009)
Panel Presentation by Phong Nguyen (2004, PDF, Must Scroll: 'Living and Loving in Diversity' Conference Proceedings) First of all I would like to pay tribute the first people of the land and I also would like to pay tribute as a social worker in the Vietnamese community for many years and I think I’m also aware of other communities as well in multicultural communities. Today I would like to, before I say my words, I would like to pay tribute to all the young people who have died, committed suicide because of who they were. Unfortunately in some cases the only time they can say who they were was through a note after they have died and to say that they are who they were - Gay or Lesbian - and so I’d like to pay tribute to them and I think we should at conferences like this going forward to have a minute of silence to pay tribute to those young who have died because the only way they can show their truth, who they are, their identity is through death so I would like to pay tribute to that. 

Katherine's Purple Heart (2010): While the world has been shocked by the story of US student Tyler Clementi...“I saw the recent spate of suicides in America and there were four last week, and my friend sent me a link to an Ellen DeGeneres video about it and I confess I cried across my keyboard, I was so shocked,” she told Sydney Star Observer. “It prompted me to think if this is happening in America, what’s happening in Australia? ... The picture for Australian teens is no less bleak, with studies showing young GLBT people up to six times more likely to attempt suicide than heterosexuals. Further research also shows around 80 percent of GLBT Australians have experienced public insult, 70 percent verbal abuse, 20 percent explicit threats and 13 percent physical assault. A 2005 nationwide study of same-sex attracted (SSA) youth found that nearly 38 percent of SSA young people had experienced discrimination, with almost 50 percent reporting verbal abuse because of their sexuality, 74 percent of that abuse at school. Self-harm rates are higher for GLBT young people, particularly young females, and GLBT Indigenous Australians and those living in remote areas face increased pressures. Katherine said these statistics have prompted her to call on Australians to wear a purple armband on October 15. - Depression is rife in the lesbian community, particularly among younger women, but a range of solutions are available, Katrina Fox reports (2006). Rainbow Dreaming (2009): This year a contingent of Indigenous men will march down Sydney's Oxford Street with a very clear message: that homosexuality has always been an intrinsic part of Aboriginal culture... The sad reality is many Indigenous men who identify as gay or transgender struggle to connect with their communities and families. They're at a higher risk of suffering from depression or abusing substances and many often commit suicide.

Leonard W, Marshall D, Hillier L, Mitchell A, Ward R (2010). Beyond homophobia: Meeting the needs of same sex attracted and gender questioning (SSAGQ) young people in Victoria. A policy blueprint. Monograph Series Number 75. Melbourne, Australia: Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health & Society, La Trobe University. PDF. Information such as "Given data showing higher rates of drug and alcohol abuse among SSAGQ young people it is significant that they are not identified as a target population in key Victorian drug and alcohol policies (and programs) such as the Victorian Drug Strategy 2006-2009 (2006) and Drug Policy and Services: An overview (2004)" is given, but an evaluation of of the SSAGQ situation in mainstream Australian suicidology is not given except for mentioning that SSAGQ people are mentioned as a target group in "Victorian Government’s Suicide Prevention Action Plan (2006)." In that document [State of Victoria, Department of Human Services (2006). Next steps: Victoria’s suicide prevention forward action plan 2006. A public statement. Melbourne, Australia: Victorian Government Department of Human Services. PDF ], the following is written:
"4.  Current suicide prevention activity: While suicide prevention activity in Victoria covers the breadth of the intervention continuum there is currently an emphasis on the primary prevention and intervention stages. The Victorian Government has invested in a range of programs targeting high risk groups, including: • primary prevention and intervention for young people through generic programs in schools and specialist services • primary and early intervention for Indigenous, gay and lesbian, and rural and regional Victorians • early intervention for those affected by mental illness."
But what is "actually" being done? An indication of "the lack of concern" for the higher suicidality of SSAGQ people is made evident in the more recently released document: State of Victoria, Department of Health (2010). Victorian Aboriginal Suicide Prevention and Response Action Plan 2010-2015. Melbourne, Australia: Mental Health, Drugs and Regions Division, Victorian Government, Department of Health. PDF. Not a word related to SSAGQ people or Sistergirl is written in the document. (Related: Sistergirl - keep yourself covered (2004). - Costello M, Nannup R (2000). Report of the First National Indigenous Sistergirl Forum (1999): A Forum for all Idigenous People who Identify as Sistergirl or Who Have Transgender Qualities. "We, the girls who have survived suicide and sexual abuse are here today. We will never let this happen again. We are your children." - Sista-Girl Documentary Film (PDF): "Elements of judgement and shame begin to filter through the girls individual stories, as a lingering grief is unearthed for several Sistergirls who committed suicide years before."]  However not a word about Australian Aboriginal SSAGQ young people and Sistergirls is mentioned in the Leonard W, Marshall D, Hillier L, Mitchell A, Ward R (2010) document, thus likely making it a advocacy document only for "white" SSAGQ young people? [For Information about racism in Australia's predominantly white SSA population see: Racism in Predominantly White GLB Communities (Alternate Link)]. It should be noted, however, that the study - Hillier L, Turner A, Mitchell A (2005). Writing themselves in again: Six years on. The 2nd national report on the sexuality heath and wellbeing of same sex attracted young people in Australia. Monograph Series no. 50, The Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society: La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria. [PDF], information about the "whole" likely "At Risk" suicide problems of SSA youth - as would be best be determined by requesting information from study participants about "Having Attempted Suicide" -was not solicited. The only questions asked was about non-suicidal and suicidal "self-harm, " and only the "self-harm" that would only be associated with the effect of "other people's homophobia - this being only one part of the total self-harm or suicidality experienced by SSAGQ young people." The related question was (Appendix A): "3K. Have there been occasions when you have thought about (or succeeded in) harming yourself as the result of other people's homophobia?  Yes/No. - If yes tell us more about 3K _______". Hence, the study reveals no concern about the total suicidality of SSAGQ young people. At least not enough concern to request related information. Furthermore, even though 34 study participants were said to be aboriginal (2% of the study sample), nothing specific was mentioned about them. Furthermore, information about 'race' / "ethnic minority" status of study participants was not solicited. In a majority "white" study sample, reported results then become essentially "white."

Coming out: gay friendly schools form rainbow alliance (2010): As an openly gay teenager, Samuel Rodda has endured his share of bullying over the years. Sometimes it's been verbal abuse, other times social exclusion - like the school camp where his classmates refused to share a room with him at night, simply because of his sexuality. The 16-year-old nonetheless considers himself one of the lucky ones. He has never been bashed for being gay but knows of several teenagers who have or, worse still, attempted suicide when the homophobic attacks became too much. But, having been to four different schools in four years, he knows that ''coming out'' can be brutally tough for young people without a supportive environment. ''There's definitely a lot of ignorance in schools when it comes to gay students. Some of the schools I've been to haven't even recognised that there are gay students there,'' he says. Samuel is now in year 10 at Princes Hill Secondary College, which he says is open and accepting of its students, regardless of sexual orientation. Today, in a pre-election bid to tackle homophobia in Victoria's education system, Princes Hill will be one of 11 schools to form a ''Safe Schools Coalition''. Under the program, schools will be encouraged to set up ''gay/straight student alliances'', share resources and provide teacher training that identifies - and stamps out - homophobia in the classroom. Students and teachers will get access to support networks and be encouraged to create posters, newsletters or forums that promote sexual diversity in schools. - Gay youths face serious challenges (2007).

The Australian National Epidemiological Study of Self-Injury (ANESSI). Centre for Suicide Prevention Studies: Brisbane, Australia (2010, by Martin G, Swannell S, Harrison J, Hazell P, Taylor A). Question Asked: "Which of the following best describes you? •Heterosexual (straight)  • Homosexual (gay/lesbian) • Bisexual (bi) • Other • Don’t know/unsure" but, so it seems, no questions about transgender identities or gender nonconformity. Many questions were also asked about self-injury and having attempted suicide (Present & in the Past). Preliminary results should be published as soon as possible, but this may not happen. Note: "Data was collected from 12,006 Australians aged 10-100 years in short telephone interviews. Parental consent was required for those under 18 years. Before respondents were interviewed, they received information in the mail about the study and their rights as a participant. Interviews were conducted in six different languages." To Mention: There is some American evidence indicating that GLB (especially bisexual) University Student are at greater risk for non-suicidal self-injury, will all being at risk for having attempted suicide (See: Whitlock J, Knox KL (2007). The Relationship Between Self-injurious Behavior and Suicide in a Young Adult Population. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 161(7): 634-640. PubMed Abstract. Full Text. Full Text.). However, in the Australian document "Seeking Solution to Self-Injury: A Guide for Young People" (2010), nothing is mentioned about non-heterosexual people. "3. WHO IS LIKELY TO SELF-INJURE? There is no particular type of person who is likely to self-injure. While people who self-injure tend to be young, some adults and older people also self-injure. Boys and girls, rich and poor people, and people from all different backgrounds self-injure."

Breaking the Silence (2010, PDF): A Seminal Report from Lifeline Australia, The Inspire Foundation, OzHeIp Foundation, Centre for Mental Health Research, ANU. Suicide Prevention Australia, the Salvation Army, and the Brain and Mind Research Institute... The Report has a 2-page section on "Sexuality, Sex, Gender Diversity and Suicide" and related Recommendations: 4.13 That gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities be recognised as a higher risk group in suicide prevention strategies, policies and programs, and that funding for targeted approaches to prevent suicide in LGBT communities be made available. Rationale: LBGT people attempt suicide at rates between 3.5 and 14 times those of their heterosexual peers. Although it is difficult to gather statistics on completed suicides by LGBT people, LGBT people are clearly a higher risk group when considering other evidence. - 4.14 Training programs that improve the cultural competency of mainstream service providers to provide non-discriminatory and culturally appropriate services to the LGBT community need to be developed and implemented as a matter of urgency. Rationale: Discrimination and stigma are barriers to service access by LGBT people. To ensure that the LGBT community can access essential services, mainstream services require support to build their capacity to understand and deliver services to the LGBT community in a non-discriminatory and culturally appropriate manner. - 4.15 Develop and fund anti-homophobia and anti-transphobia campaigns across educational settings in Australia, and online environments. Rationale: Schools are a very common location for homophobic abuse and violence for same-sex attracted youth in Australia. Reducing homophobic abuse and violence in schools would address key risk factors for suicide, including discrimination, abuse and violence and peer rejection. Similarly, LGBT young people are high users of the internet and associated technologies and increasingly this environment is also an environment for abuse and violence. This environment needs to be utilised to better effect, as a setting for suicide prevention work for LGBT young people.

Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (2010). Improving the Lives of LGBT Queenslanders: a call to action. PDF Download. "According to research from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, ‘homosexual/bisexual’ Australians are: ... more likely to have had suicidal thoughts (34.7% v. 12.9%), more likely to have had suicidal plans (17.1% v. 3.7%), more likely to have attempted suicide (12.6% v. 3.1%) ..." Reference: Australian Bureau of Statistics (2007) Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing. (additional analysis).

Rosenstreich, Gabi (2011). LGBTI People: Mental Health & Suicide. Briefing Paper. Sydney: National LGBTI Health Alliance. PDF Download. PDF Download. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex and other sexuality, sex and gender diverse (LGBTI) people make up a significant part of Australian society. - LGBTI people have significantly poorer mental health and higher rates of suicide than other Australians. - Discrimination and exclusion are the key causal factors of LGBTI mental ill-health and suicidality. - There is a robust evidence base but still significant knowledge gaps LGBTI people have specific issues. Existing initiatives are not effective for this high-risk group. - It is necessary to prioritize inclusion, targeted initiatives, prevention and partnership. - Role of the National LGBTI Health Alliance.

Minister for gay for Australia? (2010):  Should there be a minister for gay and lesbian affairs? The National LGBT Health Alliance has raised the question, as newly released figures show the rates of poor health in the community could be higher than thought.Previously unpublished statistics from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, released at the recent Health In Difference conference, have prompted calls for greater inclusion of LGBTI people in national health strategies. Gay and lesbian people are four times more likely to have attempted suicide, twice as likely to have psychological problems and are more likely to suffer from a chronic illness. Compounding those problems are statistics showing that they are twice as likely to have no contact with family members, and are four times more likely to have been homeless. “Most equity groups have significant government infrastructure,” National LGBT Health Alliance chair Paul Martin said, “including a named minister or parliamentary secretary, a national advisory group, a resourced departmental unit, a national strategy and one or more funded NGO peak bodies. The LGBTI community has none of this.” Operating as a peak body representing 76 different LGBTI organisations, the Alliance remains unfunded by Government.

Position Statement: Suicide and self-harm among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender communities (2009, SPA: Suicide Prevention Australia): Research findings demonstrate that suicide attempt and self-harm rates among gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) communities are significantly higher than among non-GLBT populations. However, estimating reliable suicide mortality statistics for these populations remains highly problematic as sexual orientation and gender identity, unlike other demographical characteristics, are not necessarily publicly known, or readily identifiable, through existing data collection methods (such as coronial records). It is important to acknowledge the diversity within and between GLBT communities. Factors such as gender, age, cultural background, location and disability may significantly impact on life experience and the determination of appropriate responses to individual situations. Sexual orientation and gender identity should also be distinguished as independent from one another, while also recognising that individuals may or may not identify with the commonly used terms ‘gay’, ‘lesbian’, ‘bisexual’, and/or ‘transgender’. The risk of suicide and self-harm among GLBT communities is complex and is compounded by experiences of stigma, discrimination, and ‘minority stress’. Sexual orientation and gender identity alone do not necessarily elevate risk; rather, experiences of heterosexism, homophobia and transphobia are known to contribute to social isolation, poorer mental health outcomes, substance misuse, and other sociocultural and economic problems and conditions, which in turn place GLBT individuals at greater risk of suicide and self-harm. SPA recognises that strategies aimed at reducing suicide and self-harm among GLBT communities must:...

Ministerial Advisory Committee on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Health and Wellbeing (2009, PDF). Well proud: A guide to gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex inclusive practice for health and human services.  Melbourne: Department of Health Victorian Government: Ministerial Advisory Committee on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Health and Wellbeing:  3.5 Services in rural areas: GLBTI people in rural areas can face additional challenges, as certain sub-groups of people in rural areas may be less tolerant of diversity in general and more homophobic. GLBTI people living in rural areas are more likely to hide their sexual orientation or gender identity, which stresses the need for the practices outlined in Section 2 (with confidentiality being particularly important). GLBTI people in rural areas can also be more isolated, with fewer social and support networks, and may have fewer opportunities to find compatible partners. There are higher rates of suicide among young people in rural areas. The risk of suicide is particularly high for same–sex-attracted or gender-questioning young people at the time of acknowledging their sexual orientation or gender identity. Suggested strategies include: • identify and work with GLBTI support groups, information networks, directories and GLBTI-sensitive health care providers and agencies so that clients can be referred to appropriate services if needed • actively address GLBTI issues in service planning and delivery, and seek input from any local or regional GLBTI community groups • respond positively when any same-sex attracted or gender-questioning client acknowledges their sexual orientation or gender identity – your service may be one of the few places where they feel they can share this. .. 6.2 Rural: Research indicates that same-sex attracted and transgender young people (SSATYP) living in rural and regional Victoria may face added pressures due to increased levels of homophobia and reduced access to SSATYP-related information, resources and organisations (Leonard, 2003). Australian research suggests that SSATYP in rural areas are at particular risk of depression and attempted suicide (Hillier et al., 1998). One report suggests that rural SSATYP are six times more likely to attempt suicide than the population as a whole (Quinn, 2003).

Uneven Ground: Mapping the terrain for LGBT young people: A Brisbane mapping report on LGBT young people and the service providers who work with them (2007. PDF Download): Twenty seven percent of gay men, 60 percent of lesbian women and 50-60 percent of transgender people experience depression and anxiety issues. Thirty to 60 percent of gay men and lesbian women have contemplated or attempted suicide, and 30 percent of transgender people have attempted suicide. The suicide rates in the LGBT community of all ages are estimated to be 2-7 times higher than the heterosexual rates... The Office for Youth, Department of Communities are currently exploring issues of suicide and self harm prevention for LGBT youth, and as such they have distributed a consultation survey to distribute to LGBT and mainstream services to collect information regarding the prevalence of these behaviours. The findings will be analysed to identify ways of ensuring the specific needs and issues of LGBT young people are considered as a part of the Office for Youth’s suicide prevention work... Compounding this lack of knowledge is the issue of paperwork changes in relation to changing gender identity, and the difficulties and hurdles inherent in this. This, and other forms of vilification and discrimination were identified by service providers as leading to increased rates of mental health issues and suicide for the transgender community. Finally, the most consistently cited gap in LGBT work was work taking place with students in schools, specifically being sexual health issues incorporating LGBT issues, and work around homophobia/sexuality. - Invisibility, safety and psycho-social distress among same-sex attracted women in rural South Australia (2004).

Coming Out Alone: An Assessment of the Needs of Same Sex Attracted Youth, Their Families, and Service providers in Western Australia (2009, PDF): Australian research found that 27% of responding gay men and 60% of responding lesbians experienced depression. Research also suggests that bisexual identifying people who are in heterosexual relationships experience significantly poorer mental health than all other sexualities but similar rates of suicide (Brown et al, 2004). Young men and women who are undecided about their sexuality have shown higher rates of deliberate self-harm than heterosexual youth or SSAY (Nicolas & Howard, 2001). Research comparisons between same sex attracted people and heterosexual people has concluded no significant differences in overall adjustment or psychiatric status (Patterson cited in Brown, Perlesz & Proctor, 2004). However, exposure to discrimination is a major risk factor associated with psychological stress and mental disorders suggesting that it is the marginalisation and discrimination of SSAY, which leads to reduced self-esteem social withdrawal and isolation. All of which are considered risk factors that contribute to mental ill health.

Submission to the Vulnerable Youth Framework discussion paper on behalf of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Health and Wellbeing (2008, PDF, Download Page): Homophobic abuse had a profound effect on young people’s health and wellbeing. Young people who had been abused fared worse on almost every health and wellbeing indicator in comparison to those who had not. The research suggests that the homophobic abuse and social exclusion experienced by SSAY leads to poorer health outcomes for these young people compared to their heterosexual peers. They 1. felt less safe at school, at home; on social occasions and at sporting events, 2. more likely to self-harm, report an STI, and use range of legal and illegal drugs, 3. 35% reported two main methods of self harm: self mutilation and attempted suicide, 4. more likely to have talked to someone or accessed a support organisation.

Gay slurs led to suicide (2010): Homophobic taunts played a significant role in the suicide of a 14-year-old boy, a coronial inquest has found. On July 25 2008 Kadina High School student Alex Wildman was found dead in the garage of his Lismore home. Two days earlier, months of harassment by other students culminated in Wildman being struck in the head while two other boys held his hair and a group of students looked on. Just months earlier students had left homophobic messages on MySpace, calling him gay and a faggot. - Bullying played part in suicide of Alex, 14: coroner (2010). - How bullies can wreck our lives (2010). - Gender on the agenda: Being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender in our community (2010): How does it affect your physical and mental health if you're cast as an outsider because of your sexuality? If you're gay, bisexual or transgender in Queensland you're more likely to have depression, experience violence, be homeless, take drugs, be discriminated against or have suicidal thoughts. It can be a tough journey. On Monday, July 12 until Friday, July 16, ABC Far North will put gender on the agenda. We're telling powerful, human stories about sexuality in our community and offering you the opportunity to share your own. We'll talk and about the hurdles and triumphs.
  
Open Doors: LGBT Youth Suicide Prevention Project: The Open Doors LGBT Youth Suicide Prevention Project was funded from 2008 to 2009 by the Queensland Department of Communities. This project is no longer funded, however information produced by this project is available: - Open Doors Suicide Prevention Project Final Report (PDF 1.52MB) - Suicide Prevention Workshops - Suicide prevention manual – Department of Communities (PDF 620KB) - Living is for Everyone (PDF 3.3MB)Research and evidence in suicide prevention. - Bullying 'pushing homosexual students to suicide' (2008): The report by LGB support organisation Open Doors has prompted calls to make Queensland schools more LGB-friendly, with the report - to be published on Friday - finding around two-thirds of respondents felt unsafe at school. Open Doors surveyed 164 LGB students across the state, and 37 per cent of respondents said they had attempted suicide in the last 12 months, with 82 per cent considering taking their own life. The report also revealed a general attitude of fear among LGB students, with 81 per cent saying they had experienced bullying based on their sexuality... Sixteen-year-old Jimmi came out as a lesbian in 2006, and she said after that point she was harassed by teachers and the principal at her school... "They singled me out because they said I wouldn't fit into the mainstream school. A teacher told me that I should consider other options." She said the one teacher who supported her did so quietly, without mentioning anything to other teachers in the school...  One of the solutions he proposed was the promotion of homosexual role models in schools, but he conceded there were a lot of prejudices that needed to be overcome first. "To come out in a school as a teacher is to take a huge risk really, it's not just young people who can be discriminated against, teachers and other workers in schools can be discriminated against and not receive support from principals and whoever else," he said. - Thorpy et al. (2008). Open Doors Action Research Report 2008: There’s No Place Like Home: An Investigation into the Health and Housing of Queensland’s Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Young People. Full Text .- Queensland fails gay teens (2008).

Private Lives: A report on the health and wellbeing of GLBTI Australians (2006, PDF, Download Page): Out of the 20,000 participants in the Sex In Australia study, those who are same sex attracted reported higher levels of psychosocial distress (Smith et al, 2003). The authors attribute this phenomena to levels of homophobia in Australian society. This conclusion is born out by the work of Warner (2004) and Hillier et al (2005), both of whom are able to demonstrate the connection between mental health problems and experiences of verbal and physical abuse which is presumptively homophobic. In this study we also found a quite distressing picture of depression and suicidal ideation (thoughts). - Discrimination Damaging Gay Health: Study: Respondents to the Private Lives survey, to be released today, reported higher levels of depression compared with heterosexuals. And sixteen percent of participants said they had thought about suicide in the two weeks prior to completing the survey. Gay men and lesbians are also regular victims of verbal abuse. Sixty percent of male and 56 percent of female respondents said they had experienced personal insults because of their sexuality. Nearly 70 percent of participants said they changed their behaviour to avoid such discrimination, and about 90 percent said they refrained from showing public affection to a same-sex partner. This simple everyday pleasure, which is commonplace among heterosexuals, is clearly seldom safely experienced by same-sex couples, the study said.

Kicking and screaming (2004, PDF, Must Scroll: 'Living and Loving in Diversity' Conference Proceedings) by Maria Pallotta-Chiarolli (): What about those who send me hate mail? I’ve had letters from Christians saying I should have been drowned at birth. No, I don’t mind being thought of as a witch, I love it. Or they tell me they’re praying for [my] death. One mother wrote to tell me my book Boy’s Stuff caused her son’s suicide. Letters like that do hurt and they hurt on behalf of the young people I work with. This young man had come out in this rural area of Victoria after he’d read Boy’s Stuff. I’ve also had my old brown car scratched because I had a rainbow sticker on it. Instead of a nice little note that said, "Sorry for scratching your car, here’s my number, come and see me", it basically said, "Faggot lover". And those who harassed my daughter in primary school saying your mum works with freaks, that kind of stuff. So being straight and doing queer work means other straights decide you’re worthless. But strategically those of us who are straighties in this queer community... 

Health and sexual diversity: A health and wellbeing action plan for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex (GLBTI) Victorians (2002, PDF, Download Page): An Australian study of 403 gay men reported that 27 per cent of respondents were suffering major depression.45 In a study of 200 lesbians, 60 per cent of respondents reported feelings of depression related to their sexual orientation while 63 per cent had contemplated suicide and 30 per cent had attempted suicide.46 Studies suggest that the suicide rate among homosexuals is 2–7 times higher than that among heterosexuals.47 Estimates of the percentage of same sex attracted people who have contemplated or attempted suicide range from 31 per cent to 63 per cent.48 There is some evidence that bisexual Australians have higher levels of anxiety, depression and suicide than gay men and lesbians.49 This study also indicated that both young and middle aged GLB people had higher levels of mental illness than heterosexual people, with more adverse life events and less positive support from family. 

Sexuality and Youth Suicide Project (West Australia). (Not available (Archive Link), and some information related to Sexuality & Youth Suicide N/A (Archive Link) or The 'Here For Life' Youth Sexuality Project was still available, but it is now gone (Nov. 2001, Archive Link). - See the 1999 report: 'Here for Life' Youth Sexuality Project. An overview of some early results by Graham Brown (Manager, Peer Education WA AIDS Council) accessed (PDF Format N/A,  Archive Link) from Youth Suicide Prevention Bulletin No.3 June 1999 N/A, Archive Link. - School's Out: Homosexuality, Bullying and Suicide. - A Report from the Skool’s Out Forum on Homophobic Bullying and Harassment in and around Schools 2002 (PDF Download). - School's Out: Homosexuality, Bullying and Suicide (2002). - A Report from the Skool’s Out Forum on Homophobic Bullying and Harassment in and around Schools 2002 (PDF Download N/A, Archive Link, New Link). - Greek culture tough for gays [in Australia] (2008): Peter said the Hellenic culture is loyal in many ways, especially families and their level of commitment to each other but when it comes to homosexuality he believes parents still entertain an outdated mentality that views sexuality as a choice or an illness rather than a state of being. "It's looked at as a mental issue or something that can be changed instead of something you just are. I think they really believe that you're able to change via a doctor or over time if you associate yourself away from the gay community and away from those thoughts," he said. Peter said this stance has hurt many gay and lesbian Greeks and Greek Australian, one man committing suicide after a lengthy struggle to gain acceptance from his family.

Bisexuals at high risk for mental health problems and suicide: Homosexuals have poorer mental health than heterosexuals. Study: "Sexual orientation and mental health: results from a community survey of young and middle-aged adults." Full Text. - PubMed Abstract. Study results used as part of a presentation of 'higher risk" status for individuals not belonging to socially constructed categories... People in 'No Man's Land': Link to PowerPoint Presentation. - Towards a sociocultural analysis of youth suicide: Researching the everyday narratives of urban and regional communities (PDF Download, Must Scroll, Archive Link): For example, the study will explore the nature of beliefs produced through living with youth unemployment, a difficult home life or being gay in an urban/rural community... Research suggests that young gay/lesbian/bisexual people experience homophobia and marginalisation, both of which are associated with increased risk of suicide attempts(Nicholas and Howard 1998).

Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Hidden in the Crowd: The Need for Documenting Links between Sexuality and Suicidal Behaviours among Young People, 2003 (PDF Download, Alternate Link, Alternate Link) - Gay and Lesbian Suicide (including youth suicide). - Rural suicide and same-sex attracted youth: issues, interventions and implications for rural counsellors (2003, PDF Download, Alternate Link) (HTML Copy) Rural and Remote Health  (online), 2003: no. 222. Abstract: "Recent research into same-sex attracted youth (SSAY) suicide and rural youth suicide suggests there may be an association between the two. A literature review explores this proposal. While contributing issues to rural SSAY suicide, such as homophobia, isolation, availability of information, and acknowledgement of issues are discussed, little hard evidence is found to support the the rural and SSAY suicide connection. Further and on-going research is recommended into this under-represented topic."

Australian Government rejects anti-suicide poster: it presents being young & gay/lesbian too positively N/A (Must scroll to locate information). - 'Out of line' Judy sets back suicide prevention 50 years [for GLB youth] (Not Available: A 1997 News item from Australian Democrats). Youth and Sexuality Final Report available as Word or Text Zip file at Freedom Centre site: 'Here for Life' Youth Sexuality Project Executive Summary (Zip Word File N/A) and Final Report (Zip Word File N/A) Download Page (Gone Forever? Why?). - Health and Support for Australian Gay Males. - Spirituality, Sexuality & Suicide - bringing God & Spirituality out of the closet: "Suicide? Well there's plenty of surveys and statistics about this and the work of dozens of  organisations trying to research, understand and prevent it, like SPA and this conference. Remarkably though, few organisations have included the gay population in their research, even though this sector is one in which suicide ideation is often part of the gauntlet  which the young gay person may often face in their rocky process of coming out as someone whose sexuality flies in the face of the heterosexist model of the rest of the world around them."

Youth suicide strategy evaluated (Sydney Star Observer, Issue 533) by By Sarah Bacon (2002):"... the only project funded by the Strategy which dealt specifically with gay and lesbian youth suicide issues was the Here For Life Youth Sexuality Project (WA AIDS Council in conjunction with the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service) which  received $250,000. Graham Brown, the health promotion officer on the Here For Life Project, says the project "went really well" considering the number of challenges - such as political battles and homophobic backlash - they had to overcome. - Australia's Valuing Young Lives: Evaluation of the National Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy (2000, As One PDF File). - Issues Paper: Mental health issues for GLBTI Victorians (PDF Download N/A: Brown, R., Perlesz, A., & Proctor, K., ‘Mental Health Issues for GLBTI Victorians,’ in What’s the Difference? Health Issues of Major Concern to Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (GLBTI) Victorians. Melbourne, Victoria (PDF Download, Download Page).  Research Report prepared by the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Gay and Lesbian Health. Published by Rural and Regional Health and Aged Care Services Division Victorian Government Department of Human Services)... Reaction to MACGLH discussion papers by Transgender Victoria (2002).

Suicide Prevention Australia 8th Annual Conference 2001 - A Human Odyssey (6 - 9 April 2001) - Session (1) "Suicide in the Gay & Lesbian Community" - Jonathan Nicholas: The Reach Out Program, Sydney - (90 minute workshop):  The incidences of suicide in the gay and lesbian community are dramatically high. Many do not have expertise in counselling in this area. The first in-depth  Australian research into completed suicide within this community sampling more than 400 people to the age of 30 has just been completed with some dramatic findings. This workshop is a must for anyone working with young people. - Self Harm and Suicide Risk for Same-Sex Attracted Young People: A Family Perspective (Australian e-Journal for the Advancement of Mental Health (AeJAMH), Vol. 1, Issue 1, 2002: PDF Download, Alternate Link).

Self Harm and Suicide Risk for Same-Sex Attracted Young People: A Family Perspective (Australian e-Journal for the Advancement of Mental Health (AeJAMH), Vol. 1, Issue 1, 2002: PDF Download). - Suicide Prevention Australia 8th Annual Conference 2001 - A Human Odyssey (6 - 9 April 2001): Session (1) "Suicide in the Gay & Lesbian Community" - Jonathan Nicholas: The Reach Out Program, Sydney - (90 minute workshop):  The incidences of suicide in the gay and lesbian community are dramatically high. Many do not have expertise in counselling in this area. The first in-depth  Australian research into completed suicide within this community sampling more than 400 people to the age of 30 has just been completed with some dramatic findings. This workshop is a must for anyone working with young people. - Nicholas J, Howard J (2001). Same-Sex Attracted Youth Suicide: Why are we still talking about it? Presented at the Suicide Prevention Australia National Conference, Sydney, April. The PowerPoint presentation was made available to the authors by John Howard. Study results also presented a 2006 Suicide Prevention Day Forum. PDF.

Fergusson DM, Horwood LJ, Ridder EM, Beautrais AL (2005). Sexual orientation and mental health in a birth cohort of young adults. Psychological Medicine, 35: 971-981 (PDF Download, Download Page): "Cohort members with a predominantly homosexual orientation had rates of mental disorder and suicidal behaviours that were between 1.5 to 12 times higher than for those with an exclusively heterosexual orientation. These associations persisted after adjustment for confounding. The associations between sexual orientation and mental health were more marked for males than females."

Suicide and Self-harm (2002): "Suicide is a tragedy which occurs all too often and which can prevented. This book examines Australia's suicide rate and focuses on the groups most at risk - young people; middle-aged men; Aboriginal people; gays and lesbians; people from rural and remote communities; and the elderly. This book also explores the risk factors and warning signs for people who self-harm, and for those who attempt suicide; the myths of suicide; treatments for depression; understanding suicide and developing prevention strategies; and how to deal with the grief of losing someone who has taken their own life." - Jorm AF, Korten AE, Rodgers B, Jacomb PA, Christensen H (2002). Sexual orientation and mental health: results from a community survey of young and middle-aged adults. British Journal of Psychiatry. 180: 423-7. PubMed Abstract. Australian study: "A community survey of 4824 adults was carried out in Canberra, Australia... Results: The bisexual group was highest on measures of anxiety,  depression and negative affect, with the homosexual group falling between the other two groups. Both the bisexual and homosexual groups were high on suicidality. Bisexuals also had more current adverse life events, greater childhood adversity, less positive support from family, more negative support from friends and a higher frequency of financial problems. Homosexuals reported greater childhood adversity and less positive support from  family. Full Text.

Tasmania: - Release on Tas gay suicide study - 2.5 times more likely to be suicide attempters (1998). - Gay Youth Study: Government response Essential (Tasmania) N/A. - Under 21: Youth Suicide. - I remember wanting to die and wanting others to feel the depth of my suffering and hopelessness: Sticks and Stones May Break Bones, But Names Hurt Even More (1999).

Outlinks - Rural GLB Youth Network:  - Summary: Sexuality & Suicide: An Investigation of Health Compromising and Suicidal Behaviours among Gay and Bisexual Male Youth in Tasmania. - An Investigation of Health compromising and Suicidal Behaviours among Gay and Bisexual Male Youth in Tasmania, Kent Fordham, 1998: "Following an earlier study which found that 10% a sample of rural 14-18 year olds report same sex attractions, a study in 1998 of a sample of rural, regional and some urban 14-18 year old same sex attracted youth by Lynne Hillier and Jenny Walsh from the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society at La Trobe University found that 46% reported verbal and physical abuse 70% of which occurred at school. 11% reported IV drug use compared to 1% of all young people. They also report higher rates of drinking and marijuana and heroin use. Only 5% of same sex attracted youth sought help from counsellors and 14% from teachers." -  Outlink National Gay and Lesbian Rural Youth Project. - "Rural youth suicide: the issue of male homosexuality" by Edward Green (Social Change in Rural Australia, 1996).

Sexuality & Suicide (K.Fordham, Sexuality and Suicide: An Investigation of Health Compromising and Suicidal Behaviours among Gay and Bisexual Male Youth in Tasmania, Division of Community and Rural Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Tasmania, September 1998, pp. 1-78. ) Study Summary: The gay and bisexual men had seriously considered suicide at twice the rate of the heterosexual men, and were more likely to have run away from home, been arrested, been involved in prostitution, to have driven while under the influence of alcohol and to have had a greater number of sexual partners in the six months preceding the survey. The gay and bisexual men generally reported lower levels of substance use than the heterosexual sample, although the rates were higher than expected in both groups. Twice as many gay and bisexual men were in a relationship compared with the heterosexual men. They were twice as likely to live alone and half as likely to be living with their parents. Consistently higher rates of health risk behaviours and psychosocial stressors were measured among those gay and bisexual men who had seriously considered suicide (suicide ideators), compared to their gay and bisexual counterparts who had not considered attempting suicide (non- suicide ideators). They were more likely to have run away from home, engaged in high levels of teenage sexual activity, had unsafe sex and been involved in prostitution. They were also more likely to have regularly been in fights, been arrested, argued with parents and teachers, lost friends as a result of coming out, been sexually abused and been the victim of homophobic violence. The suicide ideators consumed cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana and other illegal drugs more than the non- suicide ideators. Compared to gay and bisexual non- suicide ideators, suicide ideators had a later age of first awareness of same-sex attractions, and a younger age of both self-labelling as gay or bisexual and first same-sex sexual experience. Overall, the gay and bisexual men demonstrated a higher prevalence of suicide risk factors than the heterosexual men. Furthermore, the gay and bisexual men who considered suicide showed higher rates of suicide risk factors than those who had not.

Rural gays in misery: Report. "Their misery often led them to alcohol and drugs and even suicide." (Information was once available at the Reach Out web site. Must register and use site's search engine). - Working it Out - "Working It Out" Committee: Addressing Sexuality Issues. - Rural youth suicide: convention, context and cure: Speech by Chris Sidoti, Human Rights Commissioner to the Australian College of Health Service Executives (SA) Seminar, Adelaide, 14 October 1999. - Rural suicide and same-sex attracted youth: issues, interventions and implications for rural counsellors (2003, PDF).

Tasmania: ...a 16 year old man, Captain of his Launceston high school, killed himself last week after being constantly harassed for being gay (Sept. 1999). He died because this society did everything it could to encouraged his death and nothing to stop it. It instilled in him a deep and abiding sense of shame and worthlessness. It filled his peers with a profound ill-will, armed them with the words to inflict their malice, and permitted them to attack. Then, having systematically made his young life hell, society just as systematically denied him all hope. - Rodney Croome Says Society is Encouraging Deaths: Youth Suicides Due to Narrow Social-Sexual Pressures (1999): "Tasmanian gay activist, Rodney Croome condemned what he described as the' tyranny of heterosexuality' at the launching of the Victorian Law Foundation's new book, A Just Society?

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Health and Wellbeing Needs Assessment. Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services’ Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Reference Group (Blanch Consulting Pty Ltd., 2003, PDF): Contemporary research indicates that health and wellbeing issues faced by GLBT people include higher rates of suicide and drug and alcohol use and are they are at increased risk of homelessness than the general population. The research also finds that these health and wellbeing issues are an outcome of homophobic/transphobic harassment and discrimination... 4.7.1 Suicide: Studies indicate that a range of factors is associated with increased suicide risk, though there is much debate over the level of risk of suicidal behaviour and resultant protective measures necessary. Whilst mental illness is considered one of the highest risk factors, it is erroneous to assume that all suicidal behaviour is connected to mental illness or mental health problems... • A study of 403 gay men in Australia in 2000 indicated that 27% experienced major depression; • A study of 200 lesbians in Sydney (1992) found that 60% reported feeling depressed, 63% had contemplated suicide and 30% attempted suicide30; • A study of the transgender/transsexual group that found that 32% attempted suicide; and • Department of Human Services Youth Suicide Task Force Report in 1998 found same-sex attracted young people (SSAY) in Victoria to be six times more likely to attempt suicide than the population as a whole... The results of the first Australian population-based study that involved a comparison of the health status of young lesbians and bisexual women with heterosexual women were released at the Health in Difference 4 Conference in Sydney, November 2002. More than 9,000 young women participated in the Women's Health Australia study and among its findings were that young non-heterosexual women reported higher levels of depression and anxiety than young heterosexual women and twice as many non-heterosexual women reported that life was not worth living. The Tasmanian Sexuality and Suicide paper32 found that more than twice the proportion of the gay and bisexual male participants considered suicide compared to heterosexual participants. This was found to correlate with other studies about suicide ideation among gay and bisexual male youths. The interviews conducted with sexual minority young people in the North West (Working it Out) also found that extremely low self-esteem and reactions or fears about coming out directly contributed to suicidal thoughts and self-harm... [Tasmania citations: 32 Fordham, K, (1998) Sexuality & Suicide, An Investigation of Health Compromising And Suicidal Behaviours Among Gay and Bisexual Male Youth In Tasmania, University of Tasmania, Thesis Study.33 Hogge, R. (1998) Working it Out, A Needs Analysis of Sexual Minority Youth in North West Tasmania]

Special Report: Queer Street Youth: In an OUTinPerth special report, journalist Scott-Patrick Mitchell examines how the rise in homelessness has affected queer street youth in Western Australia: ‘When I first came out on the streets, I was meeting say maybe one new kid a week, or even one a fortnight,’ says Dwayne, a 24-year-old homeless gay man. ‘But now it seems to be getting to the stage where it’s half a dozen to a dozen new people every week.’ ... For those who are not only homeless but also queer – be that gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual or transgender – the struggle to survive on the street is often even harder... Esben Kass, from mobile youth service Step One, agrees in part with Dwayne about the difficulties GLBT street youth face. ‘We have quite an issue with a lot of same-sex attracted young people entering into crisis accommodation because of the harassment they get from the other kids. It contributes to them returning to the streets. It [GLBT youth] is a difficult group to place into accommodation services, especially if you are dealing with transgender or any sort of those issues. Accommodation services just seem to give up with that.’

Corboz J, Dowsett G, Mitchell A, Couch M, Agius P, Pitts M (2008, PDF). Feeling Queer and Blue: A Review of the Literature on Depression and Related Issues among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Other Homosexually Active People. A Report from the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society, La Trobe University. Prepared for beyondblue: The National Depression Initiative.

There is a pervasive tendency in the literature to exclude bisexual people or to obscure them by collapsing bisexual samples into gay, lesbian or same-sex-attracted categories. The studies that did explore bisexual people separately from homosexual people consistently showed that bisexuals have higher rates of depression or depressive symptoms than heterosexual people and, further, in some cases are at the same or even higher risk of depression than homosexuals. In an important study that analysed data from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health, McNair et al. (2005) found that in a cohort of women aged 22 to 27 years, bisexual women showed consistently poorer mental health outcomes than exclusively heterosexual, bisexual and exclusively/mainly homosexual women on almost all measures. Further, in a cohort of women aged 50 to 55, mainly heterosexual women had the poorest mental health outcomes on all measures when compared with women in any other group. In another Australian study conducted in Canberra, Jorm et al. (2002) sampled both men and women and found that the bisexual group had significantly higher depressive symptom scores than the homosexual group which, in turn, had significantly higher depressive symptoms scores than the heterosexual group (respectively: 3.93 vs. 2.93 vs. 2.62, p < .001). These results are strongly confirmed by the ARCSHS studies. For instance, in the Writing Themselves in Again study (Hillier et al. 2005), young bisexual people were significantly more likely than homosexual respondents to report dissatisfaction with both themselves (23.3 percent vs. 14.5 percent, z = 4.02, p < .001) and their lives (17.2 percent vs. 6.7 percent, z = 6.26, p < .001). Overall, the literature suggests that higher rates of depression in non-heterosexual people may be slightly inflated due to even higher rates of depressive symptoms in bisexuals.   

Ignored to death: Representations of young gay men, lesbians and bisexuals in Australian youth suicide policy and programs - 1996 (Alternate Link). - "A [1998] mental health conference in Sydney addressing gay and lesbian youth suicide has heard the problem is still largely ignored by governments and rural communities." - Suicide prevention projects Ignore Sexuality (1998). - Call for action to combat youth-gay suicide rate (1998). - Gay youth suicide prevention may be missing the mark (1999). - Youth suicide in Australia: What are the causes and risk factors for suicide among young people? Multiplicity of factors linked to youth suicide (Homosexuality is not mentioned in the document "Youth suicide in Australia - A Background Monograph". Is this an example of "being ignored to death"?). - The Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society has published a report "Don't ask, don't tell - Hidden in the crowd: the need for documenting links between sexuality and suicidal behavious among young people" in May 2003... Gay Issues continue to be ignored?: "The series on male suicides and the letters following their publication (The Age, August 2003) all seem to have ignored one of the main at-risk groups - gay males, particularly in the 15-24 year- old age group. Is this because our society continues to be so homophobic or is it because the mainstream media continue to ignore the issue? The recently issued report: "Don't Ask Don't Tell - Hidden in the Crowd: Documenting the links between sexuality and suicidal behaviours among young people" (Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society, La Trobe University, 2003) states that suicide is one of the leading causes of death among 15-24 year olds in Australia. The report further states that research in Australia has identified that same-sex attracted young people may be up to six times more likely to attempt suicide than the population in general, with those in rural areas being particularly at risk. Nowhere in your reports or letters were these matters raised. Maybe you should now spend some time on asking questions about these at-risk young people in our communities - or are we now a society that no longer worries about our younger people, particularly if they are gay or lesbian?"

Ian's goal to educate kids (1998): - Roberts, Australia's first leading sportsman to declare his homosexuality, has received hundreds of letters from youths frightened and bewildered about their sexuality. He proposed the development of an education kit to be made available in all schools. "If people read the letters I've had about kids being suicidal, and knowing people who have committed suicide, you know it wouldn't be a problem to be introduced," he said. - A challenge to the stereotypes (1997. Ian Roberts: Finding Out, by Paul Freeman): "The social problem of homophobia, as Freeman shows, still remains, of course. Gay youth are made homeless by being thrown out by intolerant parents; gays are victims of hate crimes, verbal harassment and the assault of images of heterosexuality as “normal”. All this drives some gay youth to suicide attempts." -  Ian Roberts slams Jason Akermanis over gay comments (2010): And retired Olympic swimmer Daniel Kowalski has also attacked comments from Akermanis, who controversially encouraged gay players to stay in the closet... "One of the things that really upsets me is the kids in the suburbs who aren't dealing with their sexuality. The gay suicide rate is high. There are kids out there wanting advice and a knucklehead says things like these.

Finding the Message in the Story (2008): When I started thinking of writing articles about being young and gay, I immediately became acutely aware of not lapsing into the instances of cliché that dominate young and gay writing. I didn’t want to be mentioning the “what about kids” question, or the “coming out” saga, or the loneliness. With my intelligence and sophistication (yeah, right), I believed I could rise above that shit. I was beyond that – those thoughts and issues would offer me nothing. Many groups of people, but none more so than arrogant teenagers, detest clichéd emotional expression. They hate its contrived sentimentality, the meaninglessness of the language teenagers use to describe their feelings. They perceive the poems of the two girls who suicided in Melbourne two months ago as pathetic, unintellectual, naïve and immature... It is those who wage unconditional war on the cliché that we should be worried about. Those who believe emotional expression can only be validated by a standard of what they deem “artistry” are denying themselves a body of artistic possibilities from which they could really benefit. I think this is especially valid for gay boys and girls in high schools, who are often lonely and isolated from any prospect of a relationship but who might not seek the stories of those who have experienced the same pains. Opening our minds can yield valuable reassurance, and those kids need all the reassurance they can get. 

I’m From Sydney, Australia (2009): I’ve always known that I was gay. Well before I had even heard the word, or knew its full implications. I never believed it to be wrong, how could love be so? But growing up in a small country town with a combination of conservative Catholic parents and religious schooling,... It was probably more a cry of help than any real serious attempt, but at twenty one I attempted suicide. An overdose of pills, washed down with scotch. I can remember being completely surprised at how many family and friends visited me in the hospital. I remember thinking they don’t understand me. I didn’t even feel that I understood myself. Unfortunately, it was beyond me at the time to give any real explanation for my actions, and so any chance to do so was lost... So what’s a closeted, gay, alcoholic madman to do? Marry her, of course. We married the following year. It seemed to an outsider looking in that I was getting my life back together. Could that be so wrong?  A few years later our only child, a daughter, was born... I am writing this now sitting in my inner-city studio apartment. Forty three years young. I love my gay friendly neighbourhood, and I love this city. My Indonesian born boyfriend and I live with a gay feline diva we call Oscar. My uni-attending daughter, now jokingly referred to as the fag hag, comes over every second weekend. Ten years of Buddhist practice has grounded me, nearly seventeen years of being sober and clean has healed me of many demons. I reflect on all those years living the lie, and trying to drown the truth away in a sea of booze and alcohol. Being gay is simply a part of me, as it has always been.   

  From XY Magazine (1995): "Young male suicide - reversing the trend." (Alternate Link) Reporting on a suicide prevention conference: "One other excellent paper, by Kenton Penley of the Second Storey Youth Health Centre in Adelaide, reported the dearth of research into the effects of heterosexism and homophobia on youth suicide rates." "But two out of 50 [papers presented] is a damming illustration of how the community of "anti-suicide workers" regards the need to ask how gender construction effects suicide rates." - Homophobia and masculinities among young men (Lessons in becoming a straight man) (1997): Many lesbian and gay young people have negative experiences and memories of schools and education [Nickson, 1996: 163]. They experience verbal and physical harassment and violence,[4] marginalisation, and other injustices in what is a systematic pattern of bigotry, exclusion and oppression. The consequences of this for gay and lesbian students are increasingly well documented, and include isolation, confusion, marginalisation, higher rates of personal stress and alienation, lowered self-esteem and self-hate, poor school performance, dropping out of school, homelessness, drug and alcohol abuse, and suicide.

Silence is where the hate grows (1997, Alternate Link): - in reference to mainstream suicidologists avoiding "homosexuality" issues in adolescent suicide research and prevention work:  "Although Casey reckons he "always knew" he was gay, he became one of the kids who was "forced into doing it". After moving to Sydney, Casey was drawn into a string of abusive "relationships"...Because of his low self-esteem borne of the silence, Casey says he was easy pickings for deeply-closeted homosexual "sick tickets" who found more pleasure in hearing screams for mercy as they held knives to the throats of other parents' sons than in real and open love... Starved of real love and left with little hope, Casey, like many young gays, turned to chemical "friends" to fill the void. His only human friends became the other youngsters traded by the "sick tickets"... "Of the thirteen of us, I'm one of only three that's still alive today," Casey says. "Most of my friends blew their heads off, some of them OD'd and some of them have died from AIDS. They were all bright kids with talents and promising futures."

Christmas can be Gay, but not Very Merry (1997): "Youth worker Ralph Graham says that while Christmas is a hard time for many people who cannot be with their loved ones, it is particularly hard for homosexuals. Coming to terms with their sexuality and fear of rejection can be too much. The pressure is reflected in homosexual suicide statistics around the festive season... Last year Ralph received three calls from people attempting suicide in the lead-up to Christmas. All three were young men trying to come to terms with their sexuality. One had the support of his parents, another had not yet told them and the third was not comfortable with being gay, fearing rejection from his parents, family and friends." - A gay man who survived a mutual suicide pact with his lover (1995, Alternate Link).

Shane Hughes is a 23 year old bisexual who lives in Adelaide, South Australia. "Between the ages of 14 and 21, Shane attempted suicide several times because he could not deal with his sexuality and the feelings he was having." More on Shane Hughes: How a Gay Son Finally came out to his Parents (1998, Must Scroll): "Mrs Hughes, who lives at Victor Harbour with husband Graham, said that after the initial shock, there was a sense of relief. He’d had suicide attempts and we didn’t understand why. We questioned ourselves." Mrs Hughes said. "...Mrs Hughes, who lives at Victor Harbour with husband Graham, said that after the initial shock, there was a sense of relief. He’d had suicide attempts and we didn’t understand why. We questioned ourselves." Mrs Hughes said... Shane Hughes is 25 and happy – but it wasn’t always the case. He recalls his primary school days, when he noticed he was attracted to boys as well as girls. "I didn’t really do anything about it until my early high school days, when I started feeling my way around, if I can put it that way," he said. "I got mixed up from there. I had a hard time of it. Maybe because it was all happening for me and I didn’t have any positive gay role models..."

The Wakeup Call (1998, Alternate Link): I just received the news that my friend Robert killed himself early this morning. I was not surprised. Indeed at the time I felt absolutely nothing; a kind of emotional numbness I guess. He was a difficult man to like, let alone love, but I could see the hurt child in him and I loved that child. Robert called me last night. I guess his call was a type of suicide letter. The pain he was in was obvious, the deep sense of isolation he felt was palpable. His 27 years of life had been a long series of rejections, one after another... Summary: Robert was sexually abused as a boy, expelled from his adopted Christian family when his homosexual orientation was discovered at age 14, survived via street prostitution in Brisbane, contracted HIV, developed AIDS, and killed himself in a way that may be deemed "an accident" by the investigating authorities. Sometimes a friend, such as Martin Worterding, may know that it was not an accident and he remains emotionally troubled because he is part of a society not deemed "innocent" with respect to such ultimately fatal outcomes.

Homosexuality and Suicide (1995, Part 2, Part 1) by Ed Green with Margaret Appleby (From: The Suicide-Prevention Information Centre): Difficulties experienced in the 'coming out' stage..., Difficulties in the school environment..., Lack of friends and role models..., Discrimination in the workplace..., Violence towards gays and lesbians..., Problems when sexuality is hidden..., Attitudes of some religious denominations..., Isolation in rural communities..., Higher risk for AIDS..., Providing support for homosexuals..., Bibliography. (Extract from the "Suicide Awareness for Aboriginal Communities" by Margaret Appleby & Dr. Raymond King Colleen, Brown Publishers - Rose Education). - Crucial statistics about same sex attracted youth: The following statistics are based on a range of social research conducted at Australian universities [1995-1998]. It paints a picture of difficulty and marginalisation for same sex attracted youth - all the more reason to adopt and promote tolerant attitude in schools, homes and workplaces.

Homo! Poofter! Faggot! Youth Focus Article (1998, Must Scroll) : A 17-year-old gay male describes his adolescent environment, a life a many suicide attempts, the uselessness of psychiatrists (at least for his problems), and a bleak outlook for the future "I've been rejected enough by family in my life, so losing friends would have just thrown me," he explained. But school was not easy for him. "Along with friendship break-ups at school, being gay just topped it off." He attempted suicide over a dozen times. "I lose count! I swallowed half a dozen different pills, drank nearly every household chemical we had, and slit my wrists."" - Youth at Risk: "Homelessness, Sexual Abuse, Family Rejection HIV: All are contributing to Gay Youth suicides." - An Australian expert reports that  New Zealand has done very little to stop young gays and lesbians from committing suicide. - Gay Catholics Challenge Archbishop Pell on Youth Suicide.

Prejudice can Affect Health: Australian Medical Association: "he cited a 1996 Australian study that showed that over half of gay male youths had attempted suicide. "Because of homophobia, people are suffering. Young people are dying. There can be no excuses for delays in achieving justice and human rights for all people. Lives depend on it," said Phelps. "There was very wide consultation in reaching this position statement," Phelps told Reuters Health. "I believe that it's a very important document, and it's one which the AMA will be disseminating widely to community groups and medical colleges and universities." - AMA Federal President, Dr Kerryn Phelps, To The Amnesty International Global Human Rights Conference (2002): "Why Homophobia is a Health Issue." - Sexual Diversity and Gender Identity Position Statement of AMA (Alternate Link).

"Combating Lesbian and Gay Youth Suicide and HIV/AIDS Transmission Rates: An Examination of Possible Education Strategies in Western Australian High Schools in Light of Prevailing State Statutes" by Christopher N Kendal & Sonia Walker (E Law - Murdoch University Electronic Journal of Law, Vol 5, No 4, 1998): All of the above create an environment where suicide is considered a tangible option by far too many young lesbians and gay men...  - Aspects of youth suicide: summary report of a seminar (1997): 21. Sexuality is also a suicide risk factor for young people. Although there is little statistical data on whether young people who are confused or harassed over their sexuality are at greater risk of suicide, anecdotal evidence suggests that sexuality can be a strong influencing factor. Professor Kosky told the seminar that although statistics do not show an over-representation of homosexuals in completed suicides, clinical psychiatrists feel that in truth, they are over-represented. This is because many suicides linked to feelings of, or abuse because of, homosexuality may not be reported as such. 22. One invited representative pointed out that for all teenagers, including young gays and lesbians, there are four main support groups - their family, their peers, the church and school. For young homosexuals, these support groups may become alienating and/or hostile when homosexuality is revealed. Many young homosexual people fear alienation and rejection, placing them in a situation of depression, loneliness and despair, factors recognised as triggers for suicidal behaviour.

Talking Sexual Health: A teaching & learning resource for secondary schools (2001, Implementing the National framework for Education About STIs, HIV/AIDS and Blood-Borne Viruses in Secondary Schools) PDF. Note: the section on sexual minority (gay, lesbian, bisexual) students and teachers leaves much to be desired. For example: "Teachers who are not gay and lesbian can challenge stereotypes and affirm diversity by not revealing their sexuality to students. They can also use inclusive terms when referring to relationships e.g. partner instead of husband and wife. It is easy and safe for a teacher to place gay and lesbian people as ‘other’, by ensuring that students know they are heterosexual. It is more powerful for this to be unknown to assist in breaking down myths and discrimination." Comment: The first part is good but the proposition that heterosexual teachers are NOT to mention the existence of their wives and children - all meaning that they are heterosexual - or will be presumed to be - is to live in dreamland, as if heterosexual teachers would ever accept to be closeted heterosexual, as it is inherently suggested that GLB teachers should remain closeted.

Smith A, Agius P, Mitchell A, Barrett C, Pitts M (2009). Secondary Students and Sexual Health 2008, Monograph Series No. 70, Melbourne: Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health & Society, La Trobe University (PDF - Note: Report does not contain survey results related to homosexuality, but related information was solicited).  - Secondary students and sexual health 2008 (2009): "Same sex attraction: The proportion of students reporting a sexual attraction exclusively to those of the opposite sex declined between 2002 and 2008 surveys. This decline was most marked for young men in Year 12, with the proportion of students reporting heterosexual sexual attraction dropping from 96% to 90%. There was also a marked increase in the number of students from this group who were unsure of their sexual attraction. This may well be indicative of schools dealing better with the issues and students feeling more comfortable to sit with their uncertainty rather than feeling rushed to a decision. Almost one in 10 students surveyed reported their most recent sexual encounter was with someone of the same sex. For young men, the likelihood of having a same sex encounter at the most recent sexual experience had increased from 2% in 2002 to 8% in 2008."

The primary report of the Australian Study of Health and Relationships is published as the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, Volume 27, Number 2, April 2003. Sex in Australia: Summary findings of the Australian study of health and relationships (PDF): Sexual identity, attraction and experience: In presenting the results of the survey the terms ‘lesbian’, ‘gay’ and ‘bisexual’ are used to describe only those people who identify by these terms and not those who are attracted to others of the same sex or who have had sexual experience with others of the same sex but do not themselves identify with these terms. In this study 97.4% of men identified as heterosexual, 1.6% as gay and 0.9% as bisexual. For women 97.7% identified as heterosexual, 0.8% as gay and 1.4% as bisexual. Nevertheless, 8.6% of men and 15.1% of women reported either feelings of attraction to the same sex or some sexual experience with the same sex. Half the men and two thirds of the women who had same sex sexual experience regarded themselves as heterosexual rather than homosexual. This illustrates that same sex attraction and experience are more common in Australia that is indicated by the relatively few people reporting a homosexual or bisexual identity.

Our son committed suicide because his Church regarded him as a sinner and his state regarded him as a criminal (1999). - Cranebrook is the fourth school he has had to leave. He has attempted suicide three times and receives regular psychological counselling (1997). - Help for parents dealing with youth suicide and homosexuality. A program run by Jesuit Social Services N/A.- In Queensland, schools left to decide whether GBL-positive materials will be incorporated in their suicide prevention programs N/A

Between 40,000 and 60,000 young Australians attempt suicide each year. Thirty per cent of those attempts are related to homophobia and sexuality. Despite this, only 300 out of 853 youth suicide prevention projects mention the “gay issue”, and only 12 address it in their programs. - Study examining lives of gay, lesbian teachers, students and ex-students in schools found (1994). - College hate campaign sparks reform call (2000, Note: White Print on White Background. Use: "ctrl + a"): ."The offending students in this case clearly intended to use homophobia as a weapon to inspire others to hatred and violence towards an innocent person. People who engage in hate speech must be held accountable for the results of that speech." Walker's comments were supported by Union Secretary Lisa Chesters, who urged LGBTs to join the Silver Wheat Society's campaign for anti-vilification coverage. Chesters told Queensland Pride the union had received information from individual students for several years that homophobic and sexist harassment were rife in a number of residential colleges on the campus. "The difficulty the union has faced has been that, until recently, none of these students had been willing to lodge a formal complaint or to come forward openly to make allegations. These students have been understandably fearful that retaliation would follow any such publicity." Chesters said.

Boys learn to be homophobic in the primary school playground, an academic says. (Melbourne Herald Sun, 27/12/'99) "...homophobia peaks in the mid to late teens, with boys in Years 8 and 9 reporting they use the word "poofter" 25 to 50 times a day... "At that age it is extremely powerful - in fact 'poofter' was ranked as the worst thing that a boy could be called." - Anti-homophobia plan may curb suicide rate: (Alternate Link, must scroll) "It started after surveys found bullying of same-sex attracted students was rife. A study of 1200 rural high school students found 11 per cent of teens aged 14-16 were attracted to the same sex. Another study of same-sex attracted teens found 13 per cent had suffered physical abuse and 46 per cent had suffered verbal abuse. Nearly 70 per cent of the abuse happened at school: 60 per cent by other students, 10 per cent by friends and 3 per cent by teachers. "It is total bullying," said Mr Rojas-Morales. "It begins at primary school."

Students admit same sex attraction. (Sydney Morning Herald - 29/12/'99 - Smith A, Lindsay J, Rosenthal D (1999). Same-sex attraction, drug injection and binge drinking among Australian adolescents. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 23-6, 643-6 - Abstract):  6% of grade 10-12 students report having same-sex attractions and are at higher risk for a number of problems. - Silencing (Homo)Sexualities in School ... A Very Bad Idea (2005): A good deal of research has positioned SSA young people as ‘at-risk’, using data which places heterosexual-identifying adolescents as a ‘control group’ and citing elevated drug and alcohol use, suicide attempts/ideation, and risky sexual practices among the population of SSA young people. This type of research problematises the SSA young people themselves, rather than the environments which they are subject to and the harassment they may be experiencing therein. - 11 Year Old Youngest In Australia To Undergo TG Therapy (2003): "The suicide rate amongst transgenders is so high (43 per cent of transgenders in Australia have committed suicide or have made an attempt) and I don't want a dead child." (Alternate Link)  

The abuse of a gay male adolescent in a Melbourne school is implicated in suicide. A newspaper, The Age, printed a related article (Nov, 1998 - not available online) resulting in two letters to the editor that outline the highly negative situation existing in schools for gay and lesbian youth. - From a May, 1998 "The Age" article: "Parents need to ask themselves if they would prefer our schools to deal sensitively with homophobia, or read about a child's anguish in a suicide note." From the Hunter Institute of Mental Health: An innovative mental health education program, servicing the Hunter Region and Northern New South Wales - Module 10: Gay and Lesbian Youth Suicide. - Module 10 available as PDF Download: Despite the current controversy surrounding the actual prevalence of suicide among gay and lesbian young people, it is likely that a young gay or lesbian person will experience some form of prejudice due to their sexual orientation. It has been argued that, as a consequence of such prejudice and discrimination, gay and lesbian young people are more likely to experience risk factors for suicide such as depression, substance abuse and homelessness. The issues relevant to gay and lesbian young people include both external and internal pressures. 

 

Some of the Submissions Containing GLBT Suicidality Related Information.  Submissions to The 2009-2010 Senate Community Affairs References Committee Inquiry into Suicide in Australia (Download Page) (The Report, June 2010: The Hidden Toll: Suicide in Australia - PDF, Download Page and HTML Version):

ACON's Submission to The Senate Community Affairs References Committee Inquiry into Suicide in Australia (PDF): International and national research estimates that the rate of suicide attempts for GLBT people is 3.5 to 14 times higher than for their heterosexual peers. Further, it is well recognised that suicide and self harm rates for same-sex attracted youth and GLBT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are even higher. Given this unacceptable and alarming situation ACON welcomes the opportunity to comment on this very important issue... Part B. Accuracy of Suicide Reporting in Australia: Suicide statistics reported by government authorities such as the Australian Bureau of Statistics currently do not contain figures on suicide of GLBT individuals. The data is not and cannot be disaggregated by sexual orientation or gender identity because the data collected do not contain sexual orientation or gender identity indicators. Current demographic indicators include Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status, age, sex and location. By expanding the number of indicators to include sexual orientation and gender identity, our understanding of which priority groups commit suicide at disproportionate levels would be improved, which would enhance the accuracy of suicide reporting in Australia and a create stronger of evidence base for policy and program development. Creating an opportunity to report on the sexual orientation and gender identity of an individual in coronial reports and collecting this data is however not sufficient to ensure accuracy... - 2008 ACOSS Conference Speech: Mark Orr, ACON President: Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) perspectives on social inclusion/exclusion: A snapshot of the GLBT community 

The Causes of the Causes: Oppression and Suicide - Beyond an Individualistic Mental Illness Perspective (by Catherine Keating, Hanna Rosenthal, Jacinta Wainwright & Kate Bennett, 2009, PDF): Oppression, Power & Suicide: Women; & Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) People: • Research evidence demonstrates that the discrimination, rejection and abuse experienced by LGBT people has a negative impact on their health and wellbeing and significantly increases the risk of suicide. • Addressing the higher risk of suicide for LGBT communities requires changing the social and institutional norms that support discrimination and prejudice due to sexual orientation. Interventions should also target family, school and workplace settings given the high prevalence of rejection, abuse and prejudice in these contexts... Social norms and institutions that significantly advantage some people or groups and disadvantage others are evident across society. Increasingly, research has highlighted that the discrimination and prejudice experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in their everyday life is linked with depression; alcohol and drug use; and suicide (Diaz et al., 2001; Harper & Schneider, 2003; Hillier et al., 2005; Johnson et al., 2007; McNair et al., 2001; Pitts et al., 2006; Rogers, 2007). Of interest to this submission, one British study (Johnson et al., 2007) identified that an incident of discrimination often preceded suicide attempts, suggesting that suicidal distress is not simply the result of individualised problems but the response by some LGBT people to institutionalised discriminatory practices perpetrated through education, health services, religion, media and the family. As a result of heterosexism and homophobia in the broader social and political context, LGBT people experience feelings of guilt, shame, and fear of their sexual orientation being identified, and often modify their daily activities and behaviour due to fear of prejudice, discrimination and abuse (Diaz et al., 2001; McNair et al., 2001; Pitts et al., 2006). The capacity to develop a positive self identity and self worth is hindered under such conditions, (Johnson et al., 2007) and negative beliefs and feelings related to gender stereotypes and homophobia experienced in the broader social context is often internalised (Harper & Schneider, 2003;  Ortiz-Hernandez, 2005). Those who experience discrimination and prejudice across a number of areas are even further disadvantaged... Unlike the experience of other marginalised groups, LGBT people often experience rejection and abuse from family and friends due to their sexual orientation (Brown, 2002; Harper & Schneider, 2003). The threat and everyday experience of harassment, violence and abuse particularly for young LGBT people in their home, school and their workplaces is alarming Many same sex attracted young people hide their sexual orientation or lead a double life to protect themselves from abuse and rejection adding a significant burden of personal stress (Harper & Schneider, 2003). It is evident that if we are to address the increased psychological distress experienced by LGBT people, we must remove discrimination, positively recognise same sex relationships and increase the legitimacy and acceptance of diverse sexual orientation within the social and political context (Pitts et al., 2006)...

Jake Lucas (PDF): Early 2001 a young man named Mark had accepted his sexual orientation, until he was repeatedly told by his church that God did not support him being homosexual. He tried in vine to explain to them he didn't choose this, it was who he was. Mark couldn't take the pressure anymore, he ended his life leaving this note to God "I just don't know how else to fix this." ... Mary Wallner, a very devoted Christian was led by the Church to condemn her Lesbian daughter, after Anna her daughter hanged herself. Her grieving mother Mary now says "If I can sheer just one person away from the pain and anguish I've been living, then maybe Anna's death will have meaning."

The Gender Centre Inc., Sydney, Australia (A, PDF): LGBT Organisations: Issues of Sex and Gender Diversity are often seen as an “add-on” for organisations focused around sexuality and/or sexual health. This ‘inclusion’ is not a comfortable one – either for Sex and Gender Diverse people, or for many of the organisations affected. Issues of Sex and Gender Diversity are fundamentally different from issues of sexuality, and organizations whose primary goal is focused around sexuality generally have little motivation to direct resources to Sex and Gender Diverse issues. Roughly 40% of Sex and Gender Diverse people identify as heterosexual and are not comfortable accessing services that have been designed to meet the specific needs of gays and lesbians. Levels of discrimination against Sex and Gender Diverse people from within the gay and lesbian community are at least as high as they are within in the broader community... In Conclusion: As already said the issue of suicide is pertinent for all Australia and for the transgender population the issues of extremely significant because of the risks and experiences transgender people are exposed to that make them more vulnerable to succumbing suicidal behaviors and actions. The Gender Centre as the leading Centre for advocacy of this marginalized community urge the senate to take note of the issues and ideas discussed in this paper and recognize that there is a great need for action to resolve the threat to the health and well being of the transgender population in Australia in an appropriate and open understanding framework.

The Gender Centre Inc., Sydney, Australia (B, PDF): The Gender Centre as the peak organization for transgender people in NSW has a plethora of anecdotal evidence on the subject of suicide. It is by combining this anecdotal evidence with the statistical data available that a picture of transgender suicide in Australia can be formulated. The SPA position Statement (2009) does argue that the current research that is available indicates that the prevalence and rates of self harm and attempted suicide are significantly higher amongst transgender people than among non transgender populations.

Tasmanian Council for Sexual & Gender (PDF): Diverse People Within six months of entering work Laurence had suicided. The investigation brought no understanding to his parents beyond the comment of the police that ‘there was some evidence of bullying at work from comments on the toilet wall’. The coronial inquiry and investigation gave no reason or motivation about the suicide. In Laurence’s parents opinion the right questions were not asked and everyone seemed to be in denial. Laurence’s parents were desperate in their grief to understand and find some meaning to Laurence’s terrible final act. Stories were rife in town. People actually crossed the road to avoid the family. Michael finally broke his silence to tell of Laurence’s awful burden and secret – he was also at breaking point and has never recovered from his depression. Laurence’s mother blamed herself - in having signed the pledge to bring her son’s up Catholic she felt she had signed Laurence’s death warrant...

Stephen Kilkeary: Social Stressors and Male Suicide (2009, PDF): 4. Male suicide afflicts certain men in particular contexts: Male suicide does not affect all men equally but instead, affects certain men in specific contexts in particular. For example, Page, et al. (2006) found that while there has been a downward trend in the overall suicide rate for young men in Australia, for young men from low socio-economic backgrounds, the suicide rate is actually increasing. Moreover, young gay men are much more likely to attempt suicide than their straight counterparts, a tragedy that is directly linked to the high incidence of homophobia in Australia (Dyson, et al., 2003; Hillier, et al., 2005). It is stunning policy hypocrisy that the same Christian organisations that governments fund to provide suicide prevention services aggressively perpetrate hatred toward gay men. I know of gay men who have been suicidal and who have contacted such organisations for support, only to be abused because of their 'depraved' lifestyles.

National LGBT Health Alliance Submission (2009, PDF): Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands people Health outcomes for Australian Indigenous people are the poorest of any demographic group in Australia across all areas, resulting in average mortality 17 years earlier than the general population. LGBT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands people face the same challenges as other Indigenous Australians, with some issues being compounded by their sexual or gender identity... Almost no research has been conducted on the specific experiences of LGBT Indigenous Australians so that there is an extremely limited evidence base in relation to their suicidality and self-harm. The Indigenous samples in the research that has been conducted in Australian LGBT populations have tended to be too small to allow comparative analysis. A small number of community-based support services and peer-support groups exist in urban centres, who provide knowledge. The diversity of cultures within Indigenous Australia is reflected in the diversity of experiences of Indigenous LGBT people, although some experiences do appear to be shared. Indigenous National LGBT Health Alliance stakeholders note that this population is even more likely to be socially isolated than other LGBT people - especially those from rural and remote areas who have often felt pressure to move away from family and cultural support networks in order to openly live as who they are. This often leads to weakening of the social resources represented by family, community and culture, and increased risk behaviour. Mental health, and in particular suicide are consistently raised by our Indigenous members as the most significant issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands LGBT people. “When making the decision to come out we often feel a sense of isolation and disconnection of country we identify with and the land location we identify our kinship, often resulting in drug and alcohol dependency to suppress feelings connected to the whole ‘Coming Out’ process. In our home communities we practise our roles as expected in a female or male capacity then fly back to the city where our sexuality is openly accepted and community and support allow us to express and be ourselves in regards to sexuality although discrimination presents many challenges. There is a mental challenge to balance culture ,connection to land and sexuality acceptance within our kinships.” Available evidence confirms that factors known to contribute to suicide risk, such as discrimination, loss of cultural identity and family belonging are particularly high among Indigenous LGBT people. A respondent to the Tranznation study noted: “I feel that as Aboriginal and a sistergirl, we face more discrimination and stigma than non-Aboriginal trannies. We have to deal with our own communities attitudes and values, not alone deal with the broader community. I have noticed that living in a large city, I face some form of discrimination at least 3 to 4 times a week.” This means that the risk of suicide for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands people who are LGBT is compounded and further increases the already high suicide rates among these communities.

National LGBT Health Alliance Submission (2010, PDF):  At that hearing Senator Moore inquired whether the National LGBT Health Alliance has been involved or consulted by Wesley Mission in regard to their funded LifeForce program, which includes community suicide prevention networks. During the Committee hearing Wesley Mission explained that this national suicide prevention program develops and delivers educational programs in communities to help people look at wellbeing and related issues and to deal with the issues of potential and actual suicide. .. I was able to inform the Committee that the National LGBT Health Alliance has not been approached by Wesley Mission, however I also undertook to ask our members whether any of them had been approached or had any involvement in the LifeForce program This was put on notice... I can now inform the Committee that my inquires indicate that none of the current members of the National LGBT Health Alliance has been approached or involved in any way by Wesley Mission in regard to its LifeForce program. We note that Wesley Mission is not an exception in this regard. Few generic programs or organisations seek to engage with the LGBT sector or respond to documented needs of these populations in a proactive way, thereby reproducing the exclusion of LGBT people from efforts that aim to assist all Australians. 

Leonore Hanssens' Submission (2009, PDF): This submission will address the impact of suicide and need for postvention model of response for Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory... In 2004 November a Tiwi Island Indigenous man from Wurankuwu, Bathurst Island, twenty one years of age completed suicide by hanging in the context of being acutely intoxicated with alcohol. He had been drinking with his sister at the Ranku Club where he was drinking VB full strength beer but was not regarded as a heavy drinker. He left the club with his father and then went to talk with his uncle about being teased because he was gay and also disclosed that he intended to end his life because of the teasing. His uncle talked to the deceased and telling him told him strongly not to do it and walked home with him. Once at home he became violent and throwing things at his sister but also pleading with his sister to “help me” but she said she could not help him while he was drunk but would talk to him when he was sober. He left the house very angry and didn’t return but was found the following morning hanging at a landmark site (Telstra radio compound) in the community. The Ranku clinic staff attended but he was deceased. It appears the he had become “overwhelmingly upset by feelings that he was being discriminated against by others in the community because of his sexuality” as he identified as a “Sister Girl” a term used by the Tiwi to describe homosexuality. While heavily intoxicated with alcohol he was overwhelmed with these feelings of rejection and he took his own life.

Inspire Foundation: Suicide prevention through online technologies (2009, PDF): The risk of suicide and self-harm among sexuality, sex and gender diverse communities is complex and is compounded by experiences of stigma, discrimination, and ‘minority stress’. Sexual orientation, sex and gender identity alone do not necessarily elevate risk; rather, experiences of heterosexism, homophobia and transphobia are known to contribute to social isolation, poorer mental health outcomes, substance misuse, and other socio-cultural and economic problems and conditions, which in turn place these young people at greater risk of suicide and self-harm.
I have a few concerns when it comes to youth and mental health: 1) Targeted programs/mental health services for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender,questioning (GLBT) young people. Rates of poor mental health, illness and suicide disproportionately affect young people who are gay. I can't think of anyone within my circle of glbt friends and acquaintances that HASN'T had depression, anxiety or another mental health issue. I know of too many young people who have taken their own lives due to issues around their sexuality and there are many for whom we will never know that it was a factor. A new friend told me during the week that his 16yo bf of two years recently committed suicide. Neither the person who died or my friend had/has support around them because it is not safe for them to be out. The issues/concerns that affect that are specifically glbt related. Female - age 23
SPA - Suicide Prevention Australia (2009, PDF):  v. Suicide and self-harm among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender communities: SPA recognises that strategies aimed at reducing suicide and self-harm among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) communities must: • Promote socially inclusive and supportive environments that affirm sexual and gender diversity. This, in itself, is a complex task that will require efforts to address the often hostile social environments in which many GLBT individuals live, work and study. Challenging homophobia and transphobia at the interpersonal, sociocultural, and institutional levels is critical.  • Be collaborative, multidisciplinary and incorporate both mental health promotion and crisis intervention strategies that are accessible and, where appropriate, are culturally specific to GLBT individuals... It is important to acknowledge also the diversity within and between GLBT communities. Factors such as gender, age, cultural background, location and disability may significantly impact on life experience and the determination of appropriate responses to individual situations. Sexual orientation and gender identity should also be distinguished as independent from one another, while also recognising that individuals may or may not identify with the commonly used terms ‘gay’, ‘lesbian’, ‘bisexual’, and/or ‘transgender’. It should also be recognised that conflicts between spiritual or religious beliefs and sexuality can result in significant psychological dissonance as well as division and exclusion from family, friends and community, and that there remains conflicting evidence regarding whether any association exists between HIV/AIDS and depression, suicide and/or self-harm. Studies do support, however, the proposition that GLBT people utilise the internet as a primary means of learning more about sexuality and gender identity, as well as a way to connect with peers through participation in online communities and social networks (Hegland & Nelson, 2002; Hillier et al., 2001). Both Hillier et al (2001) and Hegland and Nelson (2002) report that the positive self-worth gained from online experiences further enables young people (in particular) to feel confident in coming out to their friends and families and seeking offline help to support them in coming to terms with gender identity and sexuality issues. More recently, research has also identified the significance of online communication to older people, indicating that older GLBT people could benefit from online intervention and support (Aguilar, Boerema, & Harrison, 2009).

Mannie De Saxe, Lesbian and Gay Solidarity, Melbourne (PDF):  We have a web site which was started when we became involved with groups trying to overcome the homophobia generated by the religious institutions in this country who have a direct link to government through various ministers and lobby groups. The web site is: http://home.zipworld.com.au/~josken/suicide.htm - We started the web page in 2001 and now, in 2009, not only has nothing changed, the situation has deteriorated during those 8 years. We are making this submission in the hope that the apathy and homophobia surrounding the issue of the suicide of young and older gay people will actually be drawn to the attention of policy-makers and politicians who will do something to ensure that the problems in indigenous and gay communities causing so many to be driven to suicide will finally be addressed.

Dr Jo Harrison, School of Health Sciences. University of South Australia (2009, PDF): Doctoral research which I conducted investigated the lack of recognition of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex (GLBTI) issues in all areas of gerontology and aged care, including government policy and quality assurance, in Australia and the USA. The research revealed a serious lack of attention to concerns related to sexuality and gender identity in the Australian context. In the US context, a history of recognition of GLBTI concerns at all levels of aged care was apparent. The thesis is available online at http://arrow.unisa.edu.au:8081/1959.8/24955. The deficit in Australian gerontology is reflected in a complete lack of mention of GLBTI elderly people in aged care policy, education and training, research priorities, program guidelines and consumer related initiatives. This absence of mention of or attention to the special needs of GLBTI elders and their carers and advocates reinforces invisibility, which in turn reinforces discrimination by neglect and exacerbates anxiety, depression and thoughts of self-harm as well as attempted suicide (Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, 2007(a)(b))... Consequently, many older GLBT Australians may not identify with the GLBT community, resulting in severe social isolation and stigma that significantly increases risk of suicide and self-harm. Older GLBT people have themselves referred to the impact of ageing amidst a youth-oriented gay cultural milieu, which harms self-esteem through the promotion of negative ageist stereotypes (Harrison, 2005). There is an urgent need to resource further research and service development to better understand and respond to issues connected to suicide and older GLBT people... A recent survey of a group of older gay men in Sydney with the highest attendance rate of any community group in that city revealed that one third of the members of the group had considered suicide. Such data requires urgent further analysis and the immediate generation of additional research investigating the causative factors behind this statistic. Such research could also investigate from the perspective of older gay men themselves what interventions and strategies could assist them amidst such serious thoughts of self-harm (Ostrow, 2009). As a researcher with experience in service provision I am approached frequently by others in gerontology and the GLBTI community about issues connected to depression and self-harm. Often this approach relates to a specific incident which has occurred and the source of the information is seeking advice. Such experiential incidents have included: • A manager of a residential aged care facility who was himself gay but not out to his staff reported that a resident had committed suicide and the manager was certain that depression related to sexual identity and isolation were causative factors. The manager decided to come out to his staff and initiate awareness training so that such an incident never recurred.  • An elderly gay man caring for a partner with cancer was advised to attend a carers’ support group to seek some support at a time of great distress. He was subjected to ostracism and abuse by members of the group, run by a mainstream church in his local area, once he revealed that he was caring for a same sex partner. He subsequently became seriously suicidal and attempted to contact Beyond Blue but only found a recorded message. He relied on personal contacts overnight for support and eventually rang Lifeline (Pollard, 2009) http://www.starobserver.com.au/soapbox/ 2009/10/20/a-cancer-of-the-soul/17406 - • A lesbian in her 60s reported that she had clarified with her family that she intended to commit suicide rather than become a consumer of any aged care services, because, she reported, they were homophobic and could not be trusted. She had completed documentation and discussed her decision with her partner and son (Harrison, 2004).  • A social worker reported that a gay man in his 70s was being deliberately moved from a residential to a psychiatric facility because he was ‘entertaining male visitors’. He became depressed and at risk of self-harm.  • A gay man in his 60s was a client of a day centre and became open about his sexual identity. The Director of the centre announced to the Occupational Therapist that he would have to wear latex gloves at all times or leave the centre, due to ‘risk of HIV infection’. He became depressed and suicidal while the issue was negotiated and a resolution reached (Harrison, 2001). Beyond Blue has produced a booklet Older People and Depression which addresses the matter of depression in people over 80 years of age. No mention of GLBTI people is made in this booklet, despite particular reference to culturally diverse groups with special needs.

Professor Graham Martin, The University of Queensland, Mental Health Centre (2009, PDF): Nothing mentioned about sexual minority groups and suicidality or self-harm, except for - at the end - the questionnaire of a major study - ANESSI - having solicited sexual orientation but NOT transgender information nor gender nonconformity information. Information related to the study: The Australian National Epidemiological Study of Self-Injury (ANESSI). Centre for Suicide Prevention Studies: Brisbane, Australia (2010, by Martin G, Swannell S, Harrison J, Hazell P, Taylor A). Question Asked: "Which of the following best describes you? •Heterosexual (straight)  • Homosexual (gay/lesbian) • Bisexual (bi) • Other • Don’t know/unsure" Many questions were also asked about self-injury and having attempted suicide (Present & in the Past). Preliminary results should be published as soon as possible, but this may not happen. Note: "Data was collected from 12,006 Australians aged 10-100 years in short telephone interviews. Parental consent was required for those under 18 years. Before respondents were interviewed, they received information in the mail about the study and their rights as a participant. Interviews were conducted in six different languages." To Mention: There is some American evidence indicating that GLB (especially bisexual) University Student are at greater risk for non-suicidal self-injury, will all being at risk for having attempted suicide (See: Whitlock J, Knox KL (2007). The Relationship Between Self-injurious Behavior and Suicide in a Young Adult Population. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 161(7): 634-640. PubMed Abstract. Full Text. Full Text.). However, in the Australian document "Seeking Solution to Self-Injury: A Guide for Young People" (2010), nothing is mentioned about non-heterosexual people. "3. WHO IS LIKELY TO SELF-INJURE? There is no particular type of person who is likely to self-injure. While people who self-injure tend to be young, some adults and older people also self-injure. Boys and girls, rich and poor people, and people from all different backgrounds self-injure."

Don Baxter, Executive Director, Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations, Inc. (2009, PDF): We have long sought for better funding for research into the social determinants of health so as to develop strategies targeting Australians most in need. The Alliance’s submission to the Inquiry into Suicide clearly sets out the overwhelming evidence of disproportionately high rates of mental illness, self-harm, suicidal ideation and suicide among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and inter-sex (LGBTI) Australians, and the evidence that the fundamental causes of these high rates are stigmatisation, discrimination and violence. While mainstream health promotion campaigns are appropriate at times, the success of Australia’s partnership response to the HIV epidemic has shown that the impact of well researched, targeted health promotion cannot be overestimated. Given the alarmingly high rates of self-harm and suicide among Australia’s LGBTI communities, there is a pressing need for suicide prevention strategies that specifically target LGBTI people. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Government for its decision to undertake this important Inquiry.


Sexual orientation, sense of belonging and depression in Australian men (2007, Full Text): Abstract: This research examined whether a sense of belonging in the community and sexual orientation were associated with depression among men. Australian heterosexual (n = 136) and gay (n = 137) men were recruited through a variety of media, including newspapers, radio, and email, and directly at public events and in the street. Responses on the Sense of Belonging Instrument and the Depression, Anxiety, Stress Scales indicated that gay men reported lower levels of sense of belonging to the community and higher levels of depression compared with heterosexual men. Results revealed that sense of belonging to the community mediated the relation between sexual orientation and depression. The findings did not support the additive or moderation models. The results imply that, for the mental health of gay men to improve, their sense of belonging needs to increase but that a reduction in the level of homophobia in the general community would seem necessary for this to occur.


New Zealand (See All Suicidality Study Results)

New Zealand: - Youth’07: Youth'07 The Health and Wellbeing of Secondary School Students in New Zealand: Results for Young People Attracted to the Same Sex or Both Sexes (2009, Download Page): "These aside, it is of concern that same/both-sex-attracted students did not experience the same improvements as their opposite-sex-attracted peers between 2001 and 2007. For example, same/both-sex-attracted students did not show the increase in those who felt happy or satisfied with life seen among opposite-sex-attracted students, and of even greater concern, nor did they share the same decreases in suicide attempts observed among opposite-sex-attracted students between 2001 and 2007." Attempted Suicide results - same-sex attracted vs. heterosexual: 2001 (22% vs. 7% = 3-times the risk), 2007 (20% vs. 4% = 5-times the risk). See Other Results From This Study on This Webpage. Related New Story:  The challenges New Zealand's gay/bi teenagers face (2009): "Youth '07 launched tomorrow, it's not all gloom and doom ya know. Queer young peeps rock," Rainbow Youth chairperson Toni Reid 'Twittered' the night before New Zealand's biggest-ever insight into the lives of gay/bi young people was presented to the public. She's right of course. The Rainbow Youth crew see hundreds of healthy and happy LGBT young people visit their centre, join their groups, and even tell their 'coming out' stories to other students in the classrooms they're invited to. But this week's headlines tell a different story: Half of gay/bi students have self-harmed. Gay students are three times more likely to be bullied at school. And, heartbreakingly, gay teens are five times more likely to attempt suicide than their straight peers. "There were some challenging findings," agrees researcher Mathijs Lucassen. "But they can inspire us to make changes in our schools and communities." Many same-sex specific "at risk" results are given in the article.

Ministry of Health (2008). New Zealand Suicide Prevention Action Plan 2008-2012: The Evidence for Action. Wellington, NZ: Ministry of Health (PDF). Note: GLB youth issues are noted but their suicidality is mentioned in such a way that the problem is somewhat "minimized." The following was written: "Recent research strongly suggests that people of non-heterosexual orientation are at increased risk of developing mental disorders and have higher rates of suicidal behaviour (Fergusson, Horwood and Ridder et al 2005; Herrell et al 1999; Russell and Joyner 2001; Skegg et al 2003). Among New Zealand young adults, the rate of mental health problems was higher for those with a predominantly same sex orientation than for their exclusively heterosexual peers – five times higher for males and twice as high for females (Fergusson, Horwood and Ridder et al 2005). A United States study of high school students found that those with a same-sex orientation were twice as likely to attempt suicide as their heterosexual peers (Russell and Joyner 2001). Initial indications are that transgender and intersexpopulations are also at increased risk (Fitzpatrick et al 2005; Johannsen, Ripa et al 2006)." The Risk Ratios for the Russell and Joyner 2001 study was about 2.5 for both same-sex attracted males and females, this being the near-lowest RR produced in American studies. Not mentioned was the RR of 3 for males and females combined in the 2001 NZ school survey given above, that would become and RR of 5 in the 2007 school survey. Also not mentioned is why New Zealand is NOT producing studies of child/youth suicide as it was done in British Columbia, Canada... with likely results that would then permit the mainstream New Zealand "suicide" authorities to state that non-heterosexual children/youth are at risk for suicide.

Child Death Review Unit, BC Coroners Service (2008). "Looking for Something to Look Forward to" (a B.C. youth who died by suicide) ... A Five-Year Retrospective Review of Child and Youth Suicide in B.C. : In the five-year period between January 1, 2003, and December 31, 2007, 81 children and youth died by suicide in British Columbia. When this project was initiated, 66 of these cases were closed and 15 remained open and under investigation. The Child Death Review Unit’s review of the 66 closed cases resulted in the following findings: • Older youth (age 17–18 years), males, Aboriginal children and youth, and gay, lesbian and bisexual children and youth, as well as those who were questioning their sexuality, were at increased risk of suicide... Sexual orientation: Four children and youth identified as gay, lesbian or bisexual. Three other children and youth had been questioning their sexual orientation in the months prior to death.

 From The National Centre of Mental Health Research, Information and Workplace Development: Funded Research in Progress or Published (September, 2010):

In Progress: Review and update of suicide prevention guidelines for schools. Research team: Dr Sunny Collings (University of Otago), Barry Taylor.
These researchers will review and update the existing suicide prevention guidelines for schools. New evidence and services have emerged since the original guidelines were developed over 10 years ago. The guidelines update will be informed by stakeholder consultation, literature review and pre-testing of the updated guidelines. The researchers will produce a full guideline, literature review and summary guideline aimed at school stakeholder audiences. These documents will include evidence-based recommendations for safe and effective suicide prevention in schools. Note: May contain "at risk" GLBT adolescent related guidelines.

In Progress: Report to inform the provision of mental health promotion and prevention services to gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex populations in New Zealand.  Research team: (SHORE and Whariki Research Centre) Jeffery Adams, Dr Pauline Dickinson, Dr Launuola Asiasiga, Dr Tim McCreanor, Associate Professor Helen Moewaka Barnes.
This project will produce a needs assessment report on mental health promotion and prevention service requirements for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex (GLBTI) populations in New Zealand. The report will include a review of the evidence, a description of existing services and programmes and identification of gaps in service provision.  It will also provide recommendations for service provision and funding which would improve mental health promotion and prevention service provision and inter-agency collaboration for resourcing services.

Published: Youth '07: Fact Sheet  - The Health and Wellbeing of Secondary School Students in New Zealand (2010): Notes that... Another group that is particularly vulnerable are students who are attracted to the same sex or both sexes (4% of students). Of these students, 20% reported making a suicide attempt in the previous 12 months which is five times the rate reported by students attracted exclusively to the opposite sex. PDF. Download Page. Download Page.

Published: Fortune S, Watson P, Robinson E, Fleming T, Merry S, Denny S (2010). Youth’07: The health and wellbeing of secondary school students in New Zealand: Suicide behaviours and mental health in 2001 and 2007. Auckland: The University of Auckland. PDF. Download Page. Download Page. Notes that... "Another group that is particularly vulnerable are students who are attracted to the same sex or to both sexes. These students show much higher levels of significant depressive symptoms, self-harm and suicide behaviours than those who are attracted to the opposite sex (Rossen, Lucassen, Denny & Robinson, 2009 [See Study Results on This Webpage]). Analysis of the 2007 survey results showed that students who were attracted to the same sex or to both sexes were much more likely to report a suicide attempt (20.0%) in the past 12 months than students who were attracted to the opposite sex (4.0%). Comment: Results should at least be given separately for sexual minority males and females. Also separately for bisexual students." The report also supplies Useful Links for Youth Mental Health: Young People Attracted to the Same Sex or Both Sexes: - Rainbow Youth. - OUTlineNZ: OUTLine is a free, confidential telephone counselling service for the rainbow community New Zealand wide. - Out There! Project: OUT THERE! was a Joint National Youth Development Project between the New Zealand AIDS Foundation (NZAF) and Rainbow Youth. Out There aimed to enhance the wellbeing of queer youth within Aotearoa New Zealand by providing resources, running workshops, commissioning research and organising hui (conferences). Due to multiple reasons Out There was unable to continue. - The "Making Schools Safe for People of Every Sexuality – PPTA Guidelines" link is not available,


SAFETY IN OUR SCHOOLS - KO TE HAUMARU I O TATOU KURA: An action kit for Aotearoa New Zealand schools to address sexual orientation prejudice (2005): During the past year 30.4% of non-heterosexual students report that they have thought of killing themselves - During the past year15.3% of non-heterosexual have attempted suicide [ Le Brun C, Robinson E, Warren H, Watson PD (2004). Non-heterosexual Youth - A Profile of their Health and Wellbeing. Findings of Youth2000. A National Secondary School Youth Health Survey. Auckland: The University of Auckland. Download Page. Study Results.]. Note: Results are from the 2001 survey. "Youth2000 survey" Reports (2001 & 2007 Surveys): Download Page.

Fleming TM, Merry SN, Robinson EM, Denny SJ, Watson PD (2007). Self-reported suicide attempts and associated risk and protective factors among secondary school students in New Zealand. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 41(3): 213-21. Abstract. Study Results.

The Significance of Diversity for Suicide Prevention Initiatives (2007, Download Page): ‘GLBTI’people: Rates of suicidal thoughts and behaviours, and mental health problems associated with suicide are between 1.5 and 12 times higher for GLB people than for heterosexuals in NZ (eg Fergusson et al. 2005, Skegget al. 2003, Fleming et al. 2007 ) - Transgender and intersex people also have higher risk of psychological distress, suicidal thoughts and behaviours (egFitzpatrick et al. 2005, Johannsenet al. 2006) - Many people are aware of same-sex attraction by age 13, but few disclose this to anybody before leaving school (eg Le Brunet al. 2004) - Most GLB youth who attempt suicide have not ‘come out’ - Many GLBTI people are reluctant to access health services or ‘come out’ to professionals for fear of a negative response (eg Semp2006, Fish 2006, Myers et al 2005, Meckler et al. 2006, Neville & Henrickson 2006)

Queer Subjects of Suicide: Cultural Studies, Sexuality and Youth Suicide Concepts in New Zealand (2001, by Rob Cover, Must scroll): Abstract: This paper undertakes a brief examination of current trends in New Zealand youth suicide research and policy, arguing that the extent to which youth sexuality is addressed is comparatively limited. Although lesbian/gay/bisexual sexualities, concerns and identities are relatively absent, it is important not merely to add minority sexualities to suicide concepts in New Zealand research and policy development; rather these are well-placed to take on-board highly-nuanced understandings of sexuality that (a) draw on culturalist, queer theory and postmodern/poststructuralist approaches, and (b) are more in line with a culture of sexual fluidity among contemporary youth. Personal and identity-related anxieties around such a sexual culture, it is argued, may be among risk factors for youth suicide. By showing how youth sexuality is either marginalised or mis-read by policy-makers and researchers, some early indicators of directions suicide research might take with regard to sexuality are asserted here.

New Zealand: First New Zealand study to explore GLB suicidality issues: Longitudinal Youth Study (By age 21: Suicide attempt incidence for GLB identified youth is 32.1%, and 7.0% for the others (Fergusson DM, Horwood LJ, Beautrais AL (1999). Is sexual orientation related to mental health problems and suicidality in young people? Archives of General Psychiatry, 56(10): 876-80. PubMed Abstract. Full Text.). The risk also continues after the teenage years: Fergusson DM, Horwood LJ, Ridder EM, Beautrais AL (2005). Sexual orientation and mental health in a birth cohort of young adults. Psychological Medicine, 35(7): 971-981. PubMed Abstract. PDF Download. - A 2000/2003 study of suicidality and gay youth by John Fenaughty: "Life on the seesaw: an assessment of suicide risk and resiliency for bisexual and gay male youth in Aotearoa / New Zealand.

New Zealand: New study to eventually be ready for peer review and likely publication - "A New Zealand study being conducted by researchers at the Dunedin School of Medicine will determine the association between sexual orientation (based on a measure of sexual attraction) and a range of behaviours indicative of deliberate self-harm (suicidal, non-suicidal intent). The study is based on the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study (DMHDS). The findings are expected to complement those reported by Fergusson and colleagues (1999) in the Archives of General Psychiatry." (Cited from a March 21, 2000 email from Shyamala Nada-Raja written in response to a request made by Pierre Tremblay for related information.). - The study was then published in the American Journal of Psychiatry: Lifetime suicide attempt incidences for young adult males: Heterosexual (6%), Minor Homosexuality (16%), Significant Homosexuality (25%). For females: Heterosexual (9%), Minor Homosexuality (11%), Significant Homosexuality (33%). Skegg K, Nada-Raja S, Dickson N, Paul C, Williams S (2003). Sexual orientation and self-harm in men and women. American Journal of Psychiatry, 160(3): 541-6. PubMed Abstract. Full Text.

New Zealand: - In Ya Face - Like, for example, the mis-conception that sexuality has nothing to do with some people killing themselves. I disagree. Large numbers of gays and lesbians have grappled with the thought of putting a gun to their head, or jumping off the bridge. Why? Because being gay, lesbian or transgendered in Aotearoa, despite the changes in the past decade, is still a bloody hard thing to be. It's incredibly hard, and the pressures are such that it pushes too many youths, literally, off the edge... Let's get very real, very quickly, and start to recognize that a large proportion of youth suicides may be attributed to the pressures of being gay or lesbian. - Andrew, a married man with 3 children, attempted suicide 3 times before coming to terms with a secret few would have known - except for the males he had sex with - had he died from his suicide attempts (1998).

Factors influencing the risk of suicide for gay and lesbian people include (NZ Site): (Home Page): Awareness of being gay or lesbian and first sexual experience - Total rejection by family over coming out - Rejection by society - Promiscuity and unsafe sex - Homophobic assaults and cruel taunts. - Risk Factors for Youth Suicide (2002): "Sexual Orientation: There is growing international evidence to confirm that young gay, lesbian and bisexual people have higher rates of suicidal behaviour, arising from lack of support for their sexual orientation and the discrimination they face."

Suicide in New Zealand II: a review of risk factors and prevention (Annette Beautrais, New Zealnad Medical Journal, 2003): "Psychosocial stresses... Sexual orientation Clear linkages have been established between sexual orientation and suicide attempt behaviour. These findings have been reported for New Zealand, with results indicating that young people of gay, lesbian and bisexual orientation had rates of suicidal ideation and attempt that were over five times those of heterosexual youth."

Samoa: - The Closet in the Locker Room: "Many young gay people commit suicide and this is about saving lives.” Tuaolo was shocked when a woman on a Samoan Web site, responding to his announcement, said her son had committed suicide because he was gay. Others on line responded that suicide is exactly what any gay person should do."

New Caledonia / Nouvelle-Calédonie: Lert F, l’Unité 687 de l’INSERM (2008). Situation sociale et comportements de santé des jeunes en Nouvelle-Calédonie: Premiers résultats. PDF. Orientation homosexuelle: L’attirance sexuelle pour le même sexe et l’existence des rapports sexuels avec une personne de même sexe sont deux des trois indicateurs classiques pour rendre compte de l’homosexualité dans les enquêtes en population générale. Le troisième - l’identité sexuelle - correspond à une autodéfinition de soi qui ne s’affermit souvent que plus tard dans la vie et la question de l’identité n’a pas été posée à cette population de jeunes. Les jeunes qui ont déjà été attirés dans leur vie par quelqu’un du même sexe qu’eux (6% au total) sont plus nombreux parmi les filles (8%) que les garçons (4%). Ils sont plus urbains que ruraux (8% dans le Grand Nouméa versus 3% dans les autres régions)***. Ce sont les Européens métropolitains qui déclarent le plus une attirance homosexuelle (17%) et les Kanaks le moins (2%)***. En France, chez les 18-24 ans en 2006, 7,4% des filles et 4,8% des garçons déclarent avoir été sexuellement attirés par une personne du même sexe (38). Parmi les jeunes qui déclarent cette attirance, moins de la moitié (46%) ont déjà eu un rapport sexuel avec un partenaire du même sexe. Les déclarations d'expériences homosexuelles doivent cependant être considérées comme des estimations minimales dans la population jeune... Une association forte est observée avec les violences physiques dans la famille (36 % versus 26%), les violences sexuelles subies dans l’année (55% versus 27 %) et les insultes (31 % versus 22%). Le risque associé à l’orientation homosexuelle est très élevé que l’on considère l’attirance homosexuelle (71% versus 26%) ou les relations homosexuelles (80% versus 26%). L’analyse multivariée montre que tous ces facteurs, à l’exception des violences intrafamiliales dans l’année, augmentent de façon indépendante la suicidalité. Il faut remarquer que l’association avec l’orientation sexuelle est particulièrement élevée : le risque est multiplié par 7 chez les garçons et par 2 chez les filles... Enfin, l’orientation homosexuelle apparaît très difficile à vivre en Nouvelle-Calédonie aujourd’hui pour les adolescents et de façon exceptionnellement forte chez les garçons... Si le niveau des idées suicidaires est proche de celui observé en France métropolitaine, les tentatives de suicides sont deux fois plus fréquentes. Tentatives de suicide et idées suicidaires sont à des niveaux comparables entre les différentes communautés de Nouvelle-Calédonie, sans distinction entre les régions. Elles sont nettement associées aux difficultés et aux traumatismes dans l’enfance, à la précocité des addictions, et pour les garçons plus encore que pour les filles à une orientation homosexuelle. S’y ajoute pour les garçons l’isolement social... Les facteurs de la vie quotidienne liés aux idées suicidaires chez les garçons sont l’absence d’un groupe de copains avec qui on est souvent et le fait d’avoir perdu au moins un parent.. La problématique suicidaire chez les garçons et les filles ayant une orientation sexuelle pour le même sexe est un phénomène connu59, ce qui est inattendu c’est le niveau très élevé de ce lien avec un OR proche de 7 chez les garçons après prise en compte des autres facteurs. Les jeunes ayant déjà été insultés dans les lieux publics ont plus d’idées suicidaires que les autres jeunes...  

Anti-Gay School / Society Situation in Australia and the Related Homophobia

Beyond ‘That’s So Gay’: Challenging Homophobia in Australian Schools (2010). - Beyond: 'That's So Gay'. - Catholic schools reject homophobic bullying (2009). - High School Referendum: No to Homophobia! Yes to same sex marriage & equal love rights! (2009): Resistance, a socialist youth organisation, and Highschools Against Homophobia are initiating a high school referendum against homophobia and for same sex marriage rights from Aug 2 – Aug 6. The tragic case of Alex Wildman, a high school student who suffered intense homophobic bullying, in Lismore, who killed himself on July 25, 2008, indicates a great need for anti-homophobia campaigning on high schools... There are high levels of homophobia and prejudice on high schools. In Australia, 68% of gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans and inter-sex people (LGBTI) experience homophobia in school. These statistics clearly show that action against homophobia is urgently needed on high schools. - Bullying homofóbico nas Escolas [Homophobic Bullying in Schools] (2008) by James T Sears - in English PDF. - Homophobia: An Australian History (2008). - "That's so gay" is so homophobic

Gay slurs led to suicide (2010): Homophobic taunts played a significant role in the suicide of a 14-year-old boy, a coronial inquest has found. On July 25 2008 Kadina High School student Alex Wildman was found dead in the garage of his Lismore home. Two days earlier, months of harassment by other students culminated in Wildman being struck in the head while two other boys held his hair and a group of students looked on. Just months earlier students had left homophobic messages on MySpace, calling him gay and a faggot. - Bullying played part in suicide of Alex, 14: coroner (2010). - How bullies can wreck our lives (2010). - Religious homophobia divides families (2008). - Green Party Promises To Challenge Homophobia In Australia In New Election Pledge (2010).

ILGA Releases Report on State-sponsored Homophobia: A form of homophobia - fear of the possibility that a child may one day turn out to be attracted to members of their assumed or assigned sex – is often cited as a prime motivation for the non-consensual surgery on newborn intersex children, cosmetic surgery on their genitals so they more closely resemble those of non-intersex children. Such surgery is done without the consent of the child, and is often accompanied by HRT. The results can be devastating. Homophobia is thus practised against many intersex people - some of who may also be lesbian, gay or bisexual – as well as a kind of fear and loathing that is applied exclusively to intersex people – intersexphobia  -  Australian Churches Given OK to Ban Gays From Their Hospitals + Schools (2009). - Addressing Homophobia in Sport: A Call to Action for the Australian Sport Community (2010). -  Study finds homophobia is rife in sport (2010).

Daniel Witthaus: Challenging Homophobia In A Town Near You (2010):  Gay rights advocate and education activist Daniel Witthaus is an extraordinary man with an extraordinary mission to eliminate homophobia in Australia. This passionate Victorian from Geelong is about to embark on an incredible 38 week journey all around rural Australia, taking his anti-homophobia training, called Beyond That’s So Gay’, to schools, organizations and individuals. Daniel will be documenting his journey for Same Same giving us all a genuine snapshot of what life is really like if you’re a queer and living in the country. We catch up with him just days before his amazing journey begins... What inspired you to write Beyond ‘That Is So Gay’? What is the book exactly? (Related Google Search) For many years I had noticed people getting very engaged and excited when I told stories of the work I did with young people and teachers. That was when I decided to make storytelling the basis for a lot of my training. It’s something I call edu-tainment. When I realized that teachers needed more than the Pride & Prejudice education package to actually support sexual diversity and challenge homophobia in their classrooms, I started putting together ideas on what I could write about that teachers did not already have. The book is everything a teacher or health professional would need to know to challenge homophobia in their own school. It takes teachers on a journey, assuming they know nothing about the topic, from pre-awareness through to action. Rather than being dry and formal, I’ve attempted to make it practical and full of stories and examples that people can relate to. In that sense non-teachers have found it useful reading for their own lives. - Homophobia: that's so gay (2010)   

Lesbian Gay Bisexual Takatapui Transgender Community Centre Needs Assessment (2008, Auckland, NZ, PDF, Download Page): Young people coming out at school are surrounded by an intensely hostile and dangerous environment. These environments need to change, and young LGBTT people need more support groups and alcohol-free social venues than are currently available... Nine informants expressed major concern at the homophobic and bullying environment that young LGBTT people face daily at school. "Bullying about sexuality is still one of the biggest areas of bullying in schools," said one. Another said their children had been bullied at school because of their parent’s sexual identity. Several informants said schools should have policies to ensure that they provide for LGBTT students and that teachers can be safely out, as well as support groups for LGBTT students. "School was the one place where it wasn’t even conceivable that I could be out," said one. "The whole culture was so homophobic, I wouldn’t know where to start to improve it. There was no mention of being gay or lesbian in health education, although history and English teachers would mention it. Anti-bullying programmes look great on paper, but some of my teachers wouldn’t take homophobic bullying seriously." This informant said most of the homophobia came from fellow students. Support was more likely for a "Friends of" group than an LGBTT group. Another said: "Gay was a cool word for only a short time. With teenagers, anything gay was derogatory: ‘That’s so gay’. "Kids get gay bashed in and outside schools," said another informant. "Fourteen year-old boys are extremely homophobic. A couple of Gay-Straight Alliance groups in each region would be great, so if a student had difficulties they could move."

20 Years On - Homosexual Law Reform Conference: The 2nd Conference on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Takatapui and Fa’afafine History in Aotearoa/New Zealand (2006, PDF)... 2006 has seen celebration of the 20th anniversary of homosexual law reform. Since 1986, the project for equality under the law has been all but completed. Yet today homophobia is as much in the news as ever, and many of the key institutions in our society are struggling or failing to cope with the reality of queer people living open and satisfying lives. So what will the challenges be for the next 20 years? How well equipped are we and the wider society to deal with them?

Speaking Out: Stopping Homophobic and Transphobic Abuse in Queensland - 2010 - by Alan Berman & Shirleene Robinson.
Based on the largest survey of gay, lesbian, bisexual, intersex, transgender and queer reactions to violence and harassment ever undertaken in Australia, this book gives voice to the many victims who have suffered in the state once recognised as Australia's most homophobic. It tells of the barriers people face in dealing with the legal system, the reasons why some do not report their experiences , and the complex historical, religious and educational factors affecting the perpetuation of homophobia across the country. Most importantly it provides a roadmap forward for all Australian legislative, policing, and judicial jurisdictions via a wide ranging set of recommendations, from the individual's understanding of their rights and responsibilities, to the responses of police, legal professionals and judicial officers.
 Sainsbury J (2009). Talking Straight: Finding new ways to challenge homophobia in Australian schools. PDF.
Comparable countries are dealing with homophobia in schools much more effectively than we are. While we have good work happening across disparate sectors, we need to anchor these initiatives and focus this work with strong campaigns in the education sector. Working with the education sector, the health sector, as well as human rights and equal opportunity initiatives and the justice system is imperative. We need to generate multiple leverage points for positive social change in this area. The development of a Safe Schools Coalition is an appropriate and effective implementation of this approach. It will allow a range of organizations and interest groups to work towards a clear and irrefutable goal - a young person’s right to a safe and inclusive education. This will include inviting young people to actively shape school culture, strategies and policies around sexual diversity and challenging homophobia... The basic tenet of the Australian education system is that all young people have the right to be educated in an  environment in which they feel safe and valued. Research shows that the reality is quite different. School is an unsupportive and unsafe place for many young people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), or who are either perceived to be LGBT or challenge heterosexist norms .
Dalley-Trim L, Cook J (2009). The Call To Critique ‘Common Sense’ Understandings About Boys And Masculinity(Ies). Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 34(1): 54-68. PDF. PDF.
The homophobia expressed towards boys who do not ‘measure up’ to dominant forms of masculinity is frequently related to their similarity to girls, and commonly in terms derogatory to females (Epstein, 1997: Kenway & Willis, 1998: Lees. 1997). Drawing upon what Lees (1993) identifies as a “vocabulary of abuse,” these boys are, for example, commonly labelled and referred to as: “sissies,” “girls,” “poofs,” “poofters,” “faggots,” “fags,” “bumboys,” and “Nancyboys.” Essentially. engagement with these homophobic practices -  along with other normalising techniques of surveillance - are clearly used by boys to enhance their heterosexual masculine reputation, and to police the boundaries of acceptable male behaviour and identity as well as homosexual behaviour (see Jordan, 1995: Kessler et al., 1985: Mac An Ghaill, 1994: Mahony, 1989: Martino, 1995a, 1995b, 1995c, 1995d, 2000a, 2000b, 2000c, 2000d: Martino & Frank, 2006: Nayak & Kehily, 1996, 1997: Redman & Mac An Ghaill, 1996: Skeggs, 1991: Stanley, 1986: Stanworth, 1983). Clearly, to resist dominant codes of masculinity within the school site, and more specifically within the classroom, is a precarious business - it is to risk being labelled “gay.” Given this, boys are, as Nayak & Kehily (1996) suggest, encouraged to “perform their gendered identities in particular ways to survive the prospect of homophobic abuse” (p. 216) and to cultivate a “hyper-hetero sexual identity” (p. 212). As is later demonstrated in this paper, the use of heterosexist language practices serves as a tool in the achievement of this masculinist identity.   
Still an issue? Teacher educators, teacher education and heteronormativity. By Vicki M Carpenter and Debora Lee, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand. Paper, Annual Conference of The British Educational Research Association (BERA), 2010, PDF N/A.
This paper discusses and reflects on the findings of two research projects, both related to sexual orientation and teacher education. Project One was conducted in 2003 (Fisher, Carpenter and Tetley, 2003), and the most recent, Project Two, was conducted in 2009 (Visibility and Inclusion Project). Both projects were conducted on the same New Zealand teacher education site, with some participants possibly responding to both studies. Between 2003 and 2009, the former Auckland College of Education amalgamated with the University of Auckland. Arguably one would expect such an amalgamation to result in a more critical and accepting stance regarding social justice, and sexual orientation in particular. This is what we were attempting to ascertain with our comparison and analysis...

This paper contributes to a body of knowledge surrounding issues of sexual orientation in teacher education (Sears, 2005, Ferfolja & Robinson, 2004). The findings have implications for teacher education in the international context and our goal is to publish the findings for that wider audience. New Zealand has, arguably, some of the world's most liberal and inclusive national policies surrounding sexual orientation and inclusiveness (see the Human Rights Act, 1993). The paper suggests that, despite the policy rhetoric, there was and is minimal recognition of sexual orientation diversity in the University of Auckland's teacher education programmes. While such silence impacts on teacher education students and lecturers themselves, the ramifications multiply when one considers the wider educational environment in which teacher education students will work. Teacher education is a place where misconceptions and prejudices are able to be challenged. The comparison of both projects indicates that little has changed; heteronormativity appears entrenched in teacher education. Projects One and Two provide evidence of discrimination against LGB staff. Many staff who identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual continue to feel a sense of loneliness and danger and are uncomfortable about being open about their sexuality. In teacher education courses the curriculum topic of diversity did not and does not usually include diverse sexualities. In 2009, although some staff considered that there was adequate course content in regard to sexualities, many did not. While some were inclusive of sexualities in their teaching, others saw no relevance of the topic to their curriculum work and most ignored any reference. Rather than confronting homophobia, teacher educators - in New Zealand and internationally - have a responsibility to challenge the pervasive power of heteronormativity. Through consistently questioning and ‘queering' the construct of heterosexuality as ‘normal', teacher educators can enable possibilities for discussion that are often ignored when the focus is on homophobia. We argue that the evidence of little change in staff attitudes and practices is a serious matter for teacher education in the Faculty of Education; it is an issue of social justice.
Henrickson M (2007). "You have to be strong to be gay": Bullying and educational attainment in LGB New Zealanders. Journal of Gay and Lesbian Social Services 19(3/4), 67-85. PDF. Download Page.
Lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) persons in New Zealand are highly vulnerable to bullying, although bullying appears to have evolved from physical to primarily verbal abuse. Data from the Lavender Islands national study of 2,269 LGBs in New Zealand suggest that coming out early as LGB appears associated with lower levels of educational attainment, which in tum is associated with bullying and verbal assault. LGBs with higher educational attainment are more satisfied with an LGB identity than those with lower educational attainment. The data suggest that the consequences of bullying and assault may be longer term and more far-reaching than even the psychological challenges found in the literature... A large number of respondents reported having been victims of physical or verbal abuse or violence: 2,229 respondents (64.4 percent of females and 76.6 percent of males) said they had been verbally assaulted because of their sexuality, and 18.2 percent of males and 9.2 percent of females reported having been physically assaulted because of their sexuality (total n = 318). Of all respondents, 1,297 (58.7 percent) said they had been "outed" by someone without their permission. Although respondents rated New Zealand a generally more tolerant place than other countries (M = 4.7 out of a possible high score of 7, s.d. = 1.47), they rated the social climate in the town where they were raised as intolerant (M = 2.8 out of a possible most tolerant 7, s.d. = 1.53). Respondents also reported that bullying was a problem: 1,035 (46.5 percent) reported that they had been the victims of bullying. Men (55.9 percent) were significantly more likely to have been bullied than women (35.1 percent, p < .001)
Nevill S (2008): Men and Health. The New Zealand Medical Journal, 121(1287): 7-10. PDF.
Despite an apparent acceptance of homosexuality in recent times, there remains a continuing and underlying stigma associated with living a non-heterosexual lifestyle. Consequently, a pervasive and often covert level of homophobia and heterosexism continues to be promulgated within society and throughout all healthcare contexts, which directly and negatively impacts on health and well-being. For example, not accessing primary healthcare services when feeling unwell and/or engaging in risktaking behaviours (like not using a condom when engaging in anal intercourse) that have negative consequences on an individual’s future health status. Consequently, Adams et al’s article published in this issue of the NZMJ titled Doctoring New Zealand’s gay men10 is timely and important as currently New Zealand is experiencing an increase in the number of HIV infections.
Irwin L (2007). Homophobia and Heterosexism: Implications for Nursing and Nursing Practice. The Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing, 25(1): 70-76. PDF. Download Page.
Discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people (LGBT) continues to exist in contemporary society and in institutions such as health care systems despite increasing social tolerance over the past three decades. This article explores the existence of discrimination against LGBT people among nurses and the implications this has for nursing and the quality of care delivered. The evidence suggests that LGBT patients and clients experience discrimination because of the homophobic and heterosexist attitudes of some nurses and other health professionals. Furthermore, some gay and lesbian health care workers also experience prejudice, discrimination and rejection from their colleagues. These experiences have detrimental effects for LGBT patients and staff. Strategies that may enhance the wellbeing of LGBT patients and staff are suggested.  
Anti-homophobia policy to be introduced in NSW (2010): The New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies has voted overwhelmingly to implement an anti-homophobia/anti-transphobia policy. This is fantastic news for the Jewish GLBT community as the NSWJBD finally recognises that there is a demographic within the Jewish community that needs more support. Despite the fact that it is often considered much easier for people to come out of the closet these days, recent stories in the Australian media such as the gutter-press outing of Campbell and the ignorant and damaging comments from Akermanis have shown that there are still massive hurdles to overcome.

Love thy neighbour, unless they're gay (2007):  Queensland is the most homophobic state in the country according to experts, and a study revealed today found that Australians in general are more likely to be homophobic than racist. Professor John Mangan from the University of Queensland was one of the researchers behind an international study that asked people who they would not want living next door. The results overwhelmingly revealed homosexuals as the least-desired neighbours. And while countries such as Northern Ireland and Greece were found to be more bigoted, people everywhere were more likely to be homophobic than anything else, he said. "In Australia this was very much the case, with the greatest prejudice focused on homosexuals," Mr Mangan said. Research conducted by the Australia Institute in 2005 found that Queensland was the most homophobic Australian state, with Tasmania coming in a close second.

When the Glitter Settles: Safety and Hostility at and around Gay and Lesbian Public Events: Survey Report (2007, PDF) - by Stephen Tomsen & Kevin Markwell, Cultural Institutions and Practices Research Centre, University of Newcastle... This report explores aspects of safety and hostility as perceived and experienced by participants at large-scale gay and lesbian events held in Australia. These public celebrations have considerable economic, social and cultural benefits and they contribute significantly to the creation of cosmopolitan imagery for the cities in which they are held. In particular, the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras (SGLMG) is internationally known as a major festival and attracts substantial numbers of both domestic and inbound tourists. The report examines the results of an internet-based questionnaire survey that sought information concerning participants’ perceptions and experiences of hostility, threats and violence before, during and after these events. Event organisers, police and public officials involved in planning and regulation generally stress the order and goodwill of these occasions. Nevertheless, this study suggests that: - there is a steady undercurrent of hostility, abuse and unreported violent attacks at these events, particularly in the aftermath of the SGLMG parade; - survey participants felt notably unsafe or threatened in relation to post-event interactions at the SGLMG parade...

Robinson KH, Ferfolja T (2003). Anti-homophobia education in teacher education: Perspectives from teacher educators in NSW, Australia. Paper presented at the NZARE/AARE conference, Auckland, New Zealand. PDF Download. PDF Download. - Not Round Here: Affirming Diversity, Challenging Homophobia: Rural Service Providers Training Manual (NSW. 2000, PDF) - by Kenton Penley Miller and Mahamati.

Message to young queers: It gets better (NZ, 2010): Put yourself in the position of a young person coming to the understanding that she or he is not heterosexual. Very likely virtually every aspect of your social conditioning (family, friends, media, culture, church, school etc) has created an expectation for you and everyone else of heterosexuality. Occasionally you might be lucky enough to be aware of non-heterosexual adults who seem to have happy and productive lives, but these people are quite likely to seem pretty remote from you and more likely you will know of nobody else. You feel like the only one, you feel as if your very existence lets down everyone around you and you feel alone. To make things worse, you are surrounded by routine homophobia equating being gay with everything that is pathetic or disgusting. You’d feel pretty bad, right? I remember... As adults we have both the opportunity and absolute responsibility to put that right. This latest research is about schools. Over the years there have been a number of excellent guidelines and resources developed for schools to help them do this better. Some have been excellent. But many schools have done nothing at all. It isn’t good enough, and we need to be working to ensure that there is a requirement, which is monitored and policed, for schools to take actions to actively support gay, lesbian and bisexual young people and to keep them safe.

Homophobia identified as growing issue in BOP (2006): The crippling problem of homophobia in the Bay of Plenty needs to be addressed so the region can pull its weight in helping bring down New Zealand’s burgeoning HIV epidemic among men who have sex with men, says SH4U (Western Bay Sexual Health Coalition) spokesperson Toni Ashmore. This comes after a community forum, held by the New Zealand AIDS Foundation in Tauranga last Friday (21 July), identified discrimination and prejudice against gay and bisexual men as a key area of concern.  

McDonald, Elisabeth (2006). No Straight Answer: Homophobia as Both an Aggravating and Mitigating Factor in New Zealand Homicide Cases. Victoria University of Wellington Law Review, 37(2). Full Text.
Are some schools homophobic? (2010, NZ): This man in his late twenties had been working with the girls' netball teams since February. The Board of Trustees at Middleton Grange School, which is a Christian school, disclosed to the school principal that his homosexuality was a problem and therefore could not continue in the position - apparently this was due to the Christian belief that homosexuality is a sin? Hmph - not quite sure how that impacts the ability to do one's job any differently though! What is it with the stigma that surrounds gay teachers though? This has long fascinated me and I have an entire sub-plot in a feature film script I've been developing that revolves around this very subject matter. I thought these silly reactions to someone in the education profession being gay were reserved for places like the US, but the story above has brought it all home; it's right in our own backyard.   

Kay, Melissa and Jeffries, Samantha (2010). Homophobia, heteronormativism and hegemonic masculinity : male same-sex intimate violence from the perspective of Brisbane service providers. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law. PDF. Download Page

Flood M, Hamilton C (2005). Mapping Homophobia in Australia. Australia: The Australia Institute for a Just, sustainable, Peaceful Future (PDF)... The effects of homophobia on young people are especially worrying as harassment and violence against same-sex attracted youth (SSAY) can scar them for life. According to a recent study, SSAY in Australia account for between five and 11 per cent of the relevant population. It has been estimated that they are six times more likely to attempt suicide than the population as a whole. Homophobic attitudes and behaviours have been shown to be prevalent in schools, putting SSAY at risk of discrimination, victimisation and violence. According to one study:
… the place at which the abuse was most likely to occur was school (69%) with boys more likely to be abused there than girls (81% vs 53%). The streets were the second most likely place of abuse (47%) followed by social (34%) and sporting events (9%). … Fifty nine percent of those who had been verbally or physically abused named other students as the perpetrators. Added to this, 10% named friends, some of whom were also likely to be school students. - Reference: Lynne Hillier et al., Writing Themselves In: A National Report on the Sexuality, Health and Well-Being of Same-Sex attracted Young People, Melbourne, Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health & Society, Latrobe University, 2002 [PDF]. See also NSW Teachers Federation, Education Online: Creating safe and supportive environments, 2003. http://www.nswtf.org.au/edu_online/51/createsafe.html. [See:Writing Themselves in Again 6 years on, 2005, PDF, Download Page]. Related Article: Student gay bashing rife, says report (2005). - Coming out getting easier for gay teenagers (2005). Summary of the Hillier et al. (2005) study in the National LGBT Health Alliance Submission (2009, PDF): Hiller et al. concluded from their Australian survey of the health and wellbeing of same-sex attracted young people, that the high prevalence of family and peer rejection, harassment, and bullying fuelled feelings of isolation, self-loathing and shame - all of which have been shown to substantially increase vulnerability to suicide and self-harm. Specific findings of the study included that: • over half the respondents had been verbally or physically abused because of their sexuality; • school was the place where most of that abuse took place; and • the majority of respondents felt unsafe in many different environments including school, at home and in the community. The levels of violence experienced by same-sex attracted young people increased between 1998 and 2005, escalating in schools particularly.
Addressing homophobia and sex-based discrimination in schools - by Darryl Murray (Youth Studies Australia, 20(1), 2001. Abstract: "Homophobia in secondary schools in Australia has a major impact on the health and well-being of many young people. However, with the help of programs such as Family Planning Queensland's Out With Homophobia Workshop, teachers can affect changes in the attitudes of their students and contribute to organisational changes to provide a safe and non-homophobic school environment." - Issues for schools (2003) - The effects of Homophobia: Boy Talk - Diverse Masculinities.- What macho means? - Boys' experiences of masculinity.  

One of the Boys Masculinity, Homophobia, and Modern Manhood by David Plummer - Haworth Press, 1999 (Abstract / Contents) (Review). - Homophobia starts in the schoolyard: study. (Smith's online: The newsletter of the University of New England, 40(9), May 1999): "Australian boys as young as seven years of age learn to be homophobic, according to a new book by School of Health Associate Professor David Plummer... Homophobic words start being used in mid to late primary school... 'poofter' was ranked as the worst thing a boy could be called... homophobia usually peaked in the mid to late teens." - An Analysis of the New South Wales Department of Education and Training's Anti-Homophobia Policy (1997). - School's Out: Homosexuality, Bullying and Suicide (2002). - Australian Human Rights Commission (2010, PDF). Protection from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and/or gender identity: Discussion Paper. Australian Human Rights Commission (2010): Documents: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Equality. - Australia to improve gay rights (2008): The Australian government has announced plans to remove about 100 laws it says discriminate against gay couples. 

What do they think? Queerly raised and queer-friendly students - by Maria Pallotta-Chiarolli (Youth Studies Australia, 19(4), 2000 (December): 34-40. Abstract: "Homophobia and heterosexism still rule in most classrooms and playgrounds although an increasing number of children and young people are being raised to be queer friendly. Maria Pallotta-Chiarolli discusses the insights of primary and secondary queer friendly students into the questions of why homophobia is still an issue among student populations; what kind of anti-homophobic strategies work; what strategies and approaches are required; and what they believe their role is in a whole-school approach to homophobia and heteronormativity."

Book shows how homophobia starts in the schoolyard (New Release 11/11/99, University of Maryland): "In primary school, boys are likely to be accused of being a poofter if they mix with girls too often, and accused of the same thing in high school if they don't mix with them enough... homophobia peaks in the mid to late teens, with boys in years 8 and 9 reporting that they use the word 'poofter' 25 to 50 times a day. These attitudes, he said, were often an exaggerated expression of heterosexual identity, and thus effected everyone... Boys who aren't targeted by others observe what goes on and make sure they don't do anything that might be considered suspect or that would make them stand out. Masculine behaviours are exaggerated and these lead to all sorts of lifestyle and risk behaviours which endure later in life... At the furthest behaviour extreme were gay-hate murders, with some research suggesting that as many as one in four murders involving strangers in New South Wales over the last 20 years were in some way related to homophobia.

Sexuality and education: "Heterosexual dominance plays itself out in schools in many institutionalized forms; lining up girls and boys separately, gender stereotyping, discrimination in sex education, no-action towards derogatory comments made in the school yard and so on. Some figures over half of lesbian, gay and bisexual students have been verbally abused, a fifth have been beaten up, one in ten thrown out of home, one in five attempted suicide. “the level of homophobic violence in Australia is outrageous.”

Lesbians and gays ridiculed at work: "Gay men, lesbians and transgender people are subjected to widespread sexual and physical assault in the workplace across Victoria, New South Wales and the ACT, a major study has found... "The effects on individuals included increased stress, depression, illness, loss of self confidence, increased alcohol and drug intake and attempted suicide," she said." The study, called The Pink Ceiling Is Too Low, examined the work experiences of more than 900 homosexuals and found almost 60 per cent had been subjected to either assault, verbal harassment and abuse, destruction of property, ridicule and homophobic jokes.

ABC's "Four Corners" (2000) - Investigative journalism at its very best - Program Transcript: "Four Corners hears the stories of both the victims and the perpetrators of gay bashing in the north Queensland city of Townsville. Reporter Quentin McDermott also searches for the causes of the prejudice which underlies the violence... In Townsville, north Queensland, being gay can be a hazard to your safety... Basically your run-of-the-mill homophobic taunts, like, 'Faggot, poofter, um -- dung puncher'... But as in much of regional Australia, the police didn't share the community's level of concern about homophobia... We are now able to prove there is an increase in issues of assaults, vilification and threats against homosexuals... Dangers are faced by gay communities everywhere. A recent study in Victoria reported that 70 per cent of lesbians and gay men had been abused, threatened or bashed in public... Pastor Jacobsen says he condemns violence against gays. But he seems to show little compassion for the intense difficulties faced by young gay people... But it's also a human issue and young people are being driven to harm themselves and even to kill themselves because they're being rejected by certain sections of society and because people are telling them it's wrong and because they're being bashed and violently harmed. Now, don't you accept some responsibility for that?.. Australia has one of the highest rates of male youth suicide in the industrialised world... Sometimes the worst kind of violence visited on gays can end up being the violence they do to themselves. Even high school children are at risk when they face uncontrolled homophobia from their fellow pupils... And it got to the point where I was trying to look for ways to get out of going to school, whether it be, like, you know, trying to cut up my wrists with a razor or trying to take a, you know, handful of this pill, a handful of that pill, or faking some kind of sickness or, you know, purposely falling down the stairs or something like that. I just did not want to go to school... Trust me -- it is a very terrifying experience just admitting to yourself that, yes, I am different...

Dr David Plummer: In many ways, boys who've gone through school and young adulthood who've been subjected to intensive homophobia really are victims of torture, and that, whether it's psychological torture at school by bullies and groups of boys or otherwise, we haven't given enough attention to the marginalisation, isolation, psychological trauma that these young boys have experienced. And isolation is one factor that has been linked fairly clearly into youth suicide and we've got an epidemic of it in modern Australia... Will ran away to Sydney following an argument with his parents when he was just 14... I was only there two weeks and I was on the streets taking drugs, working on the Wall, which is where all the boys go to prostitute themselves for money... Two years ago her girlfriend died of an overdose... When I first started using I didn't think that - morphine was something that could kill me, you know? And it was just something -- I suppose something to escape from whether I was gay or not. That was an issue, so I just used drugs to forget about it because I just didn't want to think about it... Bruce is another young person who has turned his pain in on himself. In his case, the pain of homophobic abuse as a young gay man and the agony of trying to summon the courage to tell his mother he was gay... In the end, Townsville can't be said to be any more or less homophobic than anywhere else in regional Australia."

Hohnke, Mark and O'Brien, Patrick (2008, Download Page, PDF). Discrimination against same sex attracted youth: the role of the school counsellor. Australian Journal of Guidance and Counselling , 18 (1): 67-75... While schools throughout Queensland (and indeed Australia), have developed many inclusive practices addressing the educational outcomes and social well-being of a wide variety of students, current research would indicate that the school experiences of many same-sex attracted youth (SSAY) is anything but inclusive (Mikulsky, 2006)... The journey towards a truly inclusive educational setting for sexual minority youth is clearly fraught with challenges and obstacles to overcome. Position statements around inclusion such as exists in Queensland are certainly a step in the right direction and provide a systemic framework for policy development within schools. The issues faced by SSAY within the schooling system have potentially devastating consequences for students, impacted by the silence that surrounds sexuality, a dominant heterosexist approach to curriculum and school structures and the confusion experienced by individuals as their emerging sexual identity takes shape.

Confronting Homophobia in Our Schools - Conference 26 October, Free (2010). - Homophobic? Us? (2005). - School of Hard Knocks. - A day in the life... (2002, Slight variations of this speech were used at a project called There's Two In Every Classroom, a project by Family Planning ACT. This project was designed to educate teachers and youth workers on queer youth issues, and come up with ideas to help combat homophobia.) - Issues for schools - The effects of Homophobia. - Homophobia. - School's Out: We're all about letting gay, lesbian and bisexual high school students know that they are not alone. - The issue of gay books in schools (1998).  -"Pooftah", "Wanker", "Girl" Homophobic harassment and violence in schools (From:  Anti Violence Council (AVC), Brisbane (1997). - Why Must Teachers Remain Closeted? Parents need to recognize that homosexual students need role models too (1998). - High schools pressured to provide gay material N/A (1998). - Bashed and bashed again: enough is enough (2000): "When I reflect upon being called "poofter" nearly every day at school, when I think about having to move schools, losing friends and suffering rejection by family members..." - Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Harassment Policy Support Materials Section C (2001). - Anger on school's gay plan (2006): Education authorities have been accused of instructing all Victorian government school teachers to "celebrate" homosexuality in the classroom.

What we have to say: Getting over homophobia (2007).  - Helping gay kids become part of the crowd (2006). - Group tackles homophobia head-on (2006): After concerns were raised by young people about sexual discrimination, the WayOut rural youth and sexual diversity project was established in 2002... The Kyneton based group has become a regular fixture at schools and forums in the area, providing a positive sexual message to its peers... Project coordinator, Sue hackney, from Cobaw community health Service said rural communities are less accepting of homosexuals which creates an unsafe environment for young people coming to terms with their sexuality. -  Homosexuality message threatens young people (2001). - Proud teens battle prejudice (2003): "Surviving your teenage years can be a struggle for just about anyone, but imagine if that time was also spent battling to come to terms with an alternative sexual persuasion to that of most of your friends, in a social, school and community environment without any real support." - Homophobia and masculinities among young men (Lessons in becoming a straight man): a presentation to teachers, O'Connell Education Centre, Australia, 1997.

Australian Association for Research in Education:  Conference papers - 1998 papers - Teacher positioning around 'homosexuality' in schools. (Homosexuality (gay and lesbian) within the school environment: Teachers' perspectives). - When we treat everybody the same we don't: Snipets of Gay and Lesbian School Experience:The need for naming names in policy. - Teaching Against Homophobia. - (1997 Abstracts) - Teaching Sexualities - Homosexuality and body image issues: teacher awareness. - Differences that matter and indifference in education. - Having what it takes: Homophobia and masculinities in educational settings in the UK and South Africa. - 1999 Papers - Dear Reader, There are 2 articles here: Are You Gay/Sir? is meant to be read first and is forthcoming in 'Melbourne Studies in Education' Are you gay/sir?: I'm not going to tell you: Towards a pedagogy of provocation. This is the paper that I presented at the AARE conference in 1999. - It's More Than a Game: Little boys, masculinities and football culture.

Sex Matters in Schools (1999): "Schools normalise the binary gender/sex distinction between male and female, thus rendering invisible all those who might sit on the androgynous borderline between the two. This paper briefly examines institutional assumptions underlying gender identification and some of the consequences of assuming that gays, lesbians, transsexuals, transvestites, hermaphrodites, and other intersex people should present socially as either male or female." - Enabling and disabling conditions for teaching against homophobia. - Men in Primary Teaching: An Endangered Species? - Violence against teachers is increasing, but employers have done little to provide a safe workplace. Sharon Aris reports (2003): "According to Barnes, the problem is not the lack of good anti-homophobia programs. The NSW Teachers Federation has produced a resource called the Anti-Violence Kit for all members in NSW, and can provide people who can speak and train staff in schools. The real problem is compliance: while schools are required to run anti-homophobia programs as part of their curriculum, there is no system in place to enforce this. Barnes estimates that 25 per cent of schools do it well, another 50 per cent pay lip service, and the rest ignore it completely."

We Don’t Have Any of THEM at Our School! Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Student, Teacher and Parent Invisibility and Issues (2000, PDF Download, Alternate Link). - Homophobia and the production of shame: young people and same sex attraction (2004, Abstract, PDF Download). - Investigating the relationship between “school climate,” school-related outcomes and academic self-concept for Australian, secondary school-aged same-sex attracted youth (SSAY) (2005, PDF Download): "These preliminary findings begin to shed some light on the school experiences of SSA students in Australia’s secondary schools. As the descriptive statistics on school climate show, both verbal and physical manifestations of homophobia occur with some frequency and teachers’ reactions in these instances are far less than ideal. As one would expect, students’ perceptions of their school climate as such is correlated with their sense of school community connection demonstrating that as the school environment is perceived as being more supportive (i.e. fewer accounts of homophobia, greater teacher intervention and greater “positivity” surrounding homosexuality), the strength of SSA students’ reported sense of connection to the school community increases. Likewise, the greater this reported sense of connection, the higher SSA students’ reports of academic self-concept become..." - ‘It’s a catch 22’: same sex attracted young people on coming out to parents (2004, PDF Download, Download Page, Alternate Link).

Become an Ally and Help Stop Shame, Fear, Ignorance and Violence on our Campus (A joint initiative of The University of Queensland and UQ Union, 2008): Unfortunately, homophobic incidents occur regularly on our campus. While we do not have figures for universities, research shows that 70% of gay and lesbian young people report being abused at school. The damage caused by experiencing homophobic behaviour contributes to serious emotional turmoil leading to 20 – 42% attempted suicide. Australia has one of the highest rates of youth suicide in the developed world, and Queensland has consistently higher rates. Homophobic behaviour contributes to higher dropout rates amongst LGBT/I youth and a raft of negative health outcomes.

Challenging Homophobia (Tasmania)... Background information, resources and activities for school and college leaders, teachers, Learning Services and other members of school communities addressing the requirements of the Department of Education's Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Harassment Policy: Background on homophobia, Sexuality and the Individual, Definitions relating to homophobia, Questions and answers about lesbian, gay and bisexual people, Sample student learning experiences dealing with homophobia, Resources relating to homophobia. - Community homophobia (2010): Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesman Rodney Croome told a Parliamentary inquiry yesterday that homosexuals were being abused and having their property damaged by neighbours. - Survey Shows Tasmania Most Homophobic State In Australia (2010). - The Homophobic Zone (2005, Tasmania). - Tas implements anti-homophobia school program (2007).  

Breaking a spell of silence: The Tasmanian evaluation of the 2006 Pride & Prejudice program (2007, PDF): An evaluation of the Pride & Prejudice program,1 which ran in three Tasmanian schools in 2006, suggests that students who completed the program had more positive attitudes towards gay men and lesbians. This finding parallels an earlier evaluation of the same anti-homophobia program undertaken in Victoria... Pride & Prejudice is not a sex education or sexual health program. The context of delivery of this education package, which focuses entirely on exploring social differences, discrimination, gender issues and how these relate to gay and lesbian people, differs from that of previous sexual diversity and homophobia actions/programs. The program provides opportunities for dialogue with gay men and lesbians, and aims to foster a safe, supportive and nurturing environment where students can explore issues of sexual diversity and homophobia with their peers.

Just kidding? Sex-based harassment at school (2003, New South Wales): A 107-page text for educators and carers that focuses only on sex-based harassment among students. It examines the behaviours through scenarios, explores social justice, equity and legal aspects; looks at how our talk and practice of gender relations every day makes sex-based harassment 'normal'; showcases projects in New South Wales schools; and provides ideas for eliminating the behaviour. - Duty of care to students ignored in gay school essay debate (2006).

Dwyer A, Hotten J (2009). There is no relationship: service provider staff on how LGBT young people experience policing. In: TASA Refereed Conference Proceedings 2009, 1-4 December 2009, Australian National University, Canberra (PDF). Abstract: There has been an extended engagement with how young people experience policing, with a focus on the intersection between policing and indigeneity, ethnicity, gender, and social class. Interestingly, sexuality and/or gender diversity has been almost completely overlooked, both nationally and internationally. This paper reports on LGBT youth service providers’ accounts about police and LGBT young people interactions. It overviews the outcomes of semi-structured interviews with key LGBT youth service providers in different regions of Brisbane, Queensland. As the first qualitative engagement with these issues from the perspective of service providers, it highlights not only how LGBT young people.

"It may not be fancy ...": exploring the service needs of homeless gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender young people (207, Reference, online copy not located): a report prepared by the Twenty-Ten Association Incorporated. Authors: * Toms, Michelle. * Redshaw, Sarah. * Twenty-Ten (N.S.W.) * Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (Australia) * Australia. Dept. of Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. - Study Highlights: Service providers were questioned and noted that GLBT young people faced discrimination from other young people and this was worse in rural areas. These service providers agreed that GLBT young people had high levels of associated alcohol and drug use, health issues, problems with acceptance and maintaining friendships, poor life skills and many family issues. According to the young people: Young GLBT people were also questioned and the results were startling. The GLBT young people interviewed, reported facing many issues in their daily life that made it difficult to cope including: * Mental health – Young people reported experiencing depression and anxiety which made it difficult for them to secure permanent accommodation or continue with schooling or employment opportunities. * Relationships - Perhaps linked to this was that GLBT young people reported that they had stressful and unstable relationships which led to a feeling of being out of control. * Alcohol and drugs – This was mentioned as a concern for young people as it was a popular means to cope with depression and their daily life. * Family – Young people reported that they were often ostracized from their family or generally they were frustrated with family relationships. * Education – Many young people claimed that it was difficult to pursue education if they were experiencing mental health issues such as depression. * Employment –Young people said they were worried about their ability to find employment without being discriminated against and believed that they would not be able to secure certain jobs due to their sexuality or appearance. * Ethnicity and Culture – 7 of the young people in this study were from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and they noted that they had experienced racial discrimination in Australia. This report outlined that there is currently a service gap when providing services to young GLBT people from these backgrounds. * Social – Young people said it was difficult to meet other GLBT young people who were not using drugs or behaving anti-socially, and this was especially hard for young people who lived in rural areas. * Sexuality – Again for the young people in rural areas, they reported that they had experienced discrimination and often felt deep guilt and shame. For the American GLBT Youth Homeless situation, see: Ray, N. (2006, PDF). Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth: An epidemic of homelessness. New York: National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute and the National Coalition for the Homeless. For Studies of the North American GLBT Street/Homeless Youth situation, see: Aboriginal & Sexual Minority Over-Representation In Street Youth Population.  Higher Suicidality Risk For Street Youth. Highest Suicidality Risk for Sexual Minority Street Youth.

Shout! School's Out: An Internet resource for teachers, educators and parents N/A. - Open Doors Youth Service Resources for Schools. - SSAFE in Schools Website: Transgender Young People. - Same Sex Attracted Youth Research, ARCSHS (LaTrobe University). - Supporting SSAQTY at school; Resources. - WayOut, Rural Victorian Youth & Sexual Diversity Project: a partnership between Cobaw Community Health Service and Gay & Lesbian Health Victoria (GLHV).

Sex Worker Outreach Project: "SWOP focuses on safety, dignity, diversity and the changing needs of sex industry workers, to foster an environment which enables and affirms individual choices and occupational rights." 

"Sex Work" section in Gay and homosexually active Aboriginal men in Sydney: Sex Practices. - Newsletter of the AIDS Council of South Australia Inc: Report on the Male Sex Worker Focus Group N/A.(Section on Sex Workers) - South Australian Sex Industry Network (SIN). - A profile of the clients of male sex workers in three Australian cities. - Out of a group of 13 gay street kids who, by an early age, were being passed around by abusive men, only 3 survived to the age of about 30 - most by violent suicides, OD's, and AIDS.

Marsden: passing parade of names: "Those sitting in the public gallery over the 136 days this matter has been running have heard a passing parade of names in connection with under-age sexual activities revolving around  Costello's, a nightclub open in the '70s and early '80s where men went to pick up young boys for sex... Others named have included Mr Tony Shenkwin, Mr Joe (Josie) Westwood, solicitor Mr Trevor Beasley and the late Mr Tony Bevan. Yesterday, former journalist Mr Simon Davies was said to have been involved in a shelter for homeless children which he would use to procure young boys. And also getting a mention yesterday was Karl Malden, the American actor famed for TV's Streets of San Francisco and his later ads for American Express  where he urges the viewer: "Don't leave home without it."

Many male prostitutes mature and educated, study shows: "The University of New England study was based on the sexual encounters of 192 male prostitutes with 1,700 clients in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane." - Community Policing and On-Street Prostitution in the Kings Cross Police Patrol (2000, PDF Download): The transsexuals prostituting themselves on-street in the Kings Cross Police Patrol area are usually aged around thirty¾considerably older than their female counterparts... The majority of adult male street prostitutes are younger than their female counterparts and their age range is between 18 and 26..." - Transsexual prostitution in New Zealand: Predominance of persons of Maori extraction.

Project supports male sex workers (1999). "The goal of the new service is to provide male sex workers with the same resources currently available to female prostitutes working in the area. This means access to counselling and legal services and to health, safety, employment and educational advice."

Community Panel on Prostitution (1990, PDF Download): Submission by the West Australian Branch of the Australian Association of Social Workers May 1990 - "Even though male prostitution may appear to be less frequent in this State, it may merely be 'invisible' because it has not been subject to nearly the same degree of control as applied to female prostitution in this State: Acott & Hewett (1987)."

Commercial Sex Between Men: A Prospective Diary-Based Study (2000, Full Text) - by Victor Minichiello (Journal of Sex Research, May 2000): "The data reported in this study were collected using a diary which male sex workers (MSWs) completed after each commercial sexual encounter with a male client over a 2-week period... The instrument was developed after consultations with three sex workers' organisations: the Sex Workers Outreach Project (SWOP) in Sydney... The total number of sex workers who completed the diary over the 2-week period was 186.."

Beyer, a transsexual and male prostitute who shucked off her past to become Mayor of Carterton is now aspiring to become Wairarapa’s MP. - Men sex workers and other men who have sex with men: how do their HIV risks compare in New Zealand? "We do find the sex workers to be different, however, in their being less likely to engage in safe sex practices. We provide an explanation for why this has not lead to their having a higher rate of seropositivity." - The Sex Industry in New Zealand: A Literature Review (2005, PDF). - New Zealand’s National Plan Of Action Against The Commercial Sexual Exploitation Of Children (2002, PDF Download).  NZ: Child Prostitution in New Zealand (2002, PDF Download): "Of the 194 child prostitutes in the ECPAT NZ survey, 10% were 12 years old or under, 15% were 13 years old, 20% were 14 years old and 30% were 15 years old (Saphira, 2001). It was not known at what age they had started sex work. At least 21% were recorded as male but it is unclear whether some were transgender." 

Young people more vulnerable to problems (Feb. 25, 2001): "In Fiji the number of young gay male prostitutes has also increased in recent years. Peter Sipeli, an activist with the Sexual Minorities Group in Suva, says that many boys who are rejected by their families turn to prostitution to survive.  "Many young boys face total rejection from their families because of their sexuality. Their young age and their lack of life skills pushes them into prostitution," he said." 


Aboriginal GLBT/Sistergirl Issues: - Rainbow Dreaming (2009): This year a contingent of Indigenous men will march down Sydney's Oxford Street with a very clear message: that homosexuality has always been an intrinsic part of Aboriginal culture... The sad reality is many Indigenous men who identify as gay or transgender struggle to connect with their communities and families. They're at a higher risk of suffering from depression or abusing substances and many often commit suicide... Often considered taboo in Aboriginal communities, homosexuality is rarely spoken about. - Indigenous Australians - Making a difference (2008): Following in these footsteps is 28-year-old Russell Weston, a gay Aboriginal man from Victoria’s Yorta Yorta tribe, who will walk from the tip of Australia – Cape York – down to Sydney to raise awareness about the high suicide rates in two communities close to his heart – the gay and the Indigenous communities.

House of BlackSTAR (2010): The House of BlackSTAR was established in 2008 by Blackbooty Supream, Brown Shuga and Pepa. Its specific aim is to support and empower Indigenous gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) and Sistergirl communities by elevating health and wellbeing. The Indigenous GLBT and Sistergirl communities suffer continuing discrimination based on sexuality and race within our own Indigenous groups, the broader society, and also in the gay and lesbian community. This neglect and indifference contributes to significant drug and alcohol related problems, and a growing number of suicides amongst young people, these issues devastate our community. The House of BlackSTAR aims to provide our disenfranchised group with pathways that will lead us from a position of perpetual disadvantage and invisibility, to a place of empowerment, self-acceptance, self-respect and belonging.

The Sistergirls (2009): Sistergirl is an Aboriginal English word that is broadly similar in meaning to MtF transgender, but not necessarily exactly the same. Sistergirls often identify as or live as women. Some do not dress like women, many do.  In traditional communities the word sistergirl also includes sisters (gay men) but to urban sistergirls it does not... - Black, out and proud (2009): Glittering sequins, cabaret tunes and dancing drag queens are not usually what one might associate with Indigenous performance. This, however, is no ordinary event. The occasion is the opening of Big Blak Dot, an exhibition of works by 'out and proud' Indigenous artists. The show is part of the Midsumma Festival, Melbourne's largest celebration of the gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgender and intersex (GLBTI) community. - Another black trans death in custody (2009, Alternate Link): Demand ensues for open investigation into an Aboriginal trans death in custody in Sydney, writes Rachel Evans. On March 10, 2009, three days after the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, 34-year-old Veronica Baxter was arrested by Redfern police. She was charged with six counts of supplying a prohibited drug and held on remand at the all-male NSW Silverwater Metropolitan Reception and Remand Centre. Despite being a trans woman, she was placed in the maximum-security jail for men. Six days later, after a 14-hour break between checking her cell, she was found dead, hanging in her single cell. Baxter was an Aboriginal woman from the Cunnamulla country, south- west of Queensland. She dressed, appeared, and had identified as a woman for 15 years and was known by family and friends as a woman. Yet she was placed in a male jail against NSW government policy, which states that trans people be placed in the jail of their choosing...

Sistagirls - from the Tiwi Islands (2010): A half hour flight north of Darwin, the two islands that make up Tiwi (Melville and Bathurst) are better known for producing AFL footballers. The islands are home to a strong Indigenous community of around 2000 people. It’s also very Catholic. This is why it comes as some surprise that the community includes about 50 Indigenous transgender women. They call themselves the Sistagirls and like many women, dream of romance and finding a good man... The term Sistagirl is used to describe a transgender person in Tiwi Island culture. Traditionally, the term was Yimpininni. The very existence of the word provides some indication of the inclusive attitudes historically extended towards Aboriginal sexual minorities. Colonialisation not only wiped out many indigenous people, it also had an impact on Aboriginal culture and understanding of sexual and gender expression. As Catholicism took hold and many traditions were lost, this term became a thing of the past. Yimpininni were once held in high regard as the nurturers within the family unit and tribe much like the Faafafine from Samoa. As the usage of the term vanished, tribes attitudes toward queer indigenous people began to resemble that of the western world and religious right. - Dreamtime fire/Tiwi sistergirls (Audio): For thousands of years Aboriginal people have skilfully used fire to manage their environment. Senior ranger and fire ecologist Dean Yibarbuk from the Kabulwarnamyo community in Arnhem Land talks about the benefits of traditional fire management and Western science and how they go hand in hand. Across the water on the Tiwi Islands a community of transgender 'sistergirls' are the focus of a new collaboration between photographer Bindi Cole and drag artist Jason di Santis.

Queensland Association for Healthy Communities Inc. (2008). Supporting transgender and sistergirl clients: Providing respectful and inclusive services to transgender and sistergirl clients (PDF). Resource developed by the Queensland Association for Healthy Communities Inc (QAHC) in conjunction with the Australian Transgender Support Association Queensland, Changeling Aspects Brisbane, Transbridge Townsville, FTM Queensland and members of the QAHC staff and board. "This resource is designed to support service providers building rapport with transgender (trans) clients. Tips on client consultations, preventative health care and sexual health are provided to assist services working with trans clients. Supporting the health and wellbeing of trans clients can be daunting if you
don’t know anything about trans people... In Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities some Sistergirls and Brotherboys are also trans people, but they may not identify with that terminology or undergo SRS. A Sistergirl’s birth sex is male. Sistergirls are often extremely feminine, and may live as women. Sistergirls often perform the roles of women, have heterosexual relationships with straight men, and are often accepted as women within their own community. Whereas a brotherboy’s birth sex is female. Brotherboys are masculine and undertake a male role in their intimate relationships. Brotherboys have heterosexual relationships with straight women. Brotherboys do not have relationships with each other, and nor do sistergirls, as these relationships would be considered homosexual, and are less likely to be accepted in the community..."


National LGBT Health Alliance Submission to The 2009-2010 Senate Community Affairs References Committee Inquiry into Suicide in Australia (Download Page) (The Report, June 2010: The Hidden Toll: Suicide in Australia - PDF, Download Page and HTML Version)  (2009, PDF): Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands people Health outcomes for Australian Indigenous people are the poorest of any demographic group in Australia across all areas, resulting in average mortality 17 years earlier than the general population. LGBT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands people face the same challenges as other Indigenous Australians, with some issues being compounded by their sexual or gender identity... Almost no research has been conducted on the specific experiences of LGBT Indigenous Australians so that there is an extremely limited evidence base in relation to their suicidality and self-harm. The Indigenous samples in the research that has been conducted in Australian LGBT populations have tended to be too small to allow comparative analysis. A small number of community-based support services and peer-support groups exist in urban centres, who provide knowledge. The diversity of cultures within Indigenous Australia is reflected in the diversity of experiences of Indigenous LGBT people, although some experiences do appear to be shared. Indigenous National LGBT Health Alliance stakeholders note that this population is even more likely to be socially isolated than other LGBT people - especially those from rural and remote areas who have often felt pressure to move away from family and cultural support networks in order to openly live as who they are. This often leads to weakening of the social resources represented by family, community and culture, and increased risk behaviour. Mental health, and in particular suicide are consistently raised by our Indigenous members as the most significant issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands LGBT people. “When making the decision to come out we often feel a sense of isolation and disconnection of country we identify with and the land location we identify our kinship, often resulting in drug and alcohol dependency to suppress feelings connected to the whole ‘Coming Out’ process. In our home communities we practise our roles as expected in a female or male capacity then fly back to the city where our sexuality is openly accepted and community and support allow us to express and be ourselves in regards to sexuality although discrimination presents many challenges. There is a mental challenge to balance culture ,connection to land and sexuality acceptance within our kinships.” Available evidence confirms that factors known to contribute to suicide risk, such as discrimination, loss of cultural identity and family belonging are particularly high among Indigenous LGBT people. A respondent to the Tranznation study noted: “I feel that as Aboriginal and a sistergirl, we face more discrimination and stigma than non-Aboriginal trannies. We have to deal with our own communities attitudes and values, not alone deal with the broader community. I have noticed that living in a large city, I face some form of discrimination at least 3 to 4 times a week.” This means that the risk of suicide for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands people who are LGBT is compounded and further increases the already high suicide rates among these communities.

Creating Spaces to Do Diversity (2010, Word Download, Words Out Newsletter): At least seven new online national networks are being created to promote the health and wellbeing of sexuality, sex and gender diverse Australians. Their establishment within the National LGBT Health Alliance is a result of the recent Health in Difference conference. For the first time those working to promote the health and wellbeing of lesbian and bisexual women will be able to easily and effectively share resources and learning across the country, collaborate on activities and inform national lobby work. Other networks include trans and intersex people, those working with LGBT youth, researchers, antiviolence activists, rainbow families advocates and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. Health in Difference achieved its aim of ‘doing diversity', bringing together over 200 participants from across Australia and New Zealand to address the rich and complex diversity within LGBTI communities and the issues they face, including seldom addressed problems such as the exclusion of Indigenous lesbians and sister girls.

double trouble? the health needs of culturally diverse men who have sex with men (2010, Australia, PDF): Culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) men who have sex with men (MSM) experience discrimination from other MSM in relation to their ethnicity and from their family and community in relation to their sexuality. Although they share the same human capacity for adaptation as anyone else, the added complexity of dealing with discrimination and exclusion is a challenge and a cause of stress, and it can result in feelings of shame and silencing of self-expression and social activity. Social exclusion decreases access to support from friends and community, and limits opportunities for social learning; in its acute forms it can precipitate intense emotional crisis, distress and anomie, which may occasion risk taking... CALD MSM experience racial discrimination on the gay ‘scene’ (commercial social and sex on premises venues and community organisations) and online. Discrimination is often based on stereotypes about gender, associated with their cultures of origin and physical appearance; although it frequently takes the form of sexual rejection, community participants also encountered men who were attracted to them because they match a given stereotype.

Polland, Ruth (Editor, 2009, PDF, PDF). However You Wanna See Me, I’m Just Me: Stories from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Gay Men, Lesbians and Sistergirls: This is a resource for combating homophobia and transphobia for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Gay Men, Lesbians and Sistergirls. The stories in this booklet tell of finding support from our friends, peers and organisations. They give examples of how others have found strength and overcome obstacles, which makes the community safer and more accepting for everyone. Everyone has the right to live safely...  It was last year, December 4, I remember it clear as. I got attacked because of my sexuality. I was on Flinders Street. This young, Caucasian guy attacked me and called me a faggot, and said: "hope you die". He stabbed me in the face twice with a glass bottle. I got rushed to hospital. I’m not going to let this beat me. The first six months it didn’t really hit me. I was just binge drinking a lot to numb the pain. And then all of a sudden I couldn’t sleep, couldn’t breathe... I was lucky enough to have a good friend and we both come out together - our community accepted us because we were so brave about it. That’s when the respect came back. That acceptance made me feel really proud - proud of being gay, proud of being black... A lot of small things can undermine your confidence. I live in a youth accommodation project, and I’ve had to sit there and listen to people talk about gay and lesbian people being dirty and disgusting. When I object and say: "This is offensive to me," the people in charge say "everyone’s entitled to their own opinion". It’s institutionalised homophobia...

Crystal’s Story: Crystal shares with us a rich story of being an Indigenous Sistergirl from northern Australia. She has some warm and rewarding yarns to share, as well as some of the personal challenges she faced around learning to love and accept herself, as well as being proud of who she is... I didn’t know why the boys were picking on me, because we didn’t know about all these issues about you know difference in our community and I was mostly picked on by how do you say, white kids and also with coloured kids because the way I was acting in my community. And most of the Aboriginal kids who grew up with me, who knew me as Cyril, they didn’t have a problem because they were a member of my family. But with other kids in school and other Aboriginal kids who grew up in the community, they felt different towards me... Sometimes it’s really hard for Aboriginal people to come into the city and try and fit into the gay community because the gay community is always where, I’m sorry to say, it’s where you know, drugs, and all about sex and all about who’s got the more money and who’s living it up and you know. And we don’t live that way. We share, we care, we look after each other. But in the gay community if you’ve got the bucks you’re their friend. If you don’t have the bucks well you’re not their friend. Because you know why, I feel that for me, I see it every day. I live in both communities, gay and straight. And I feel the same; lifestyle is the same you know.  Crystal (2009): Not only is she an accomplished performer but her work in the queer community is just as credible. She is active volunteer for many groups including the Northern Territory AIDS and Hepatitis Council (NTAHC), the Australian AIDS Federation in Sydney whilst working full-time with the Tiwi Islands Shire Council. “I teach people about being themselves. In our community on Tiwi Islands we have about 69 sistergirls and I say to them to respect yourself, respect others and respect your culture and your culture will respect you and everything will fall into place.”  - Homoglobia 6: She’s not heavy, she’s my sistergirl (2008): In part six of our series, Maxine Clarke looks at GLBT life in Indigenous Australia.

Leonore Hanssens' Submission to The 2009-2010 Senate Community Affairs References Committee Inquiry into Suicide in Australia (Download Page) (The Report, June 2010: The Hidden Toll: Suicide in Australia - PDF, Download Page and HTML Version)  (2009, PDF): In 2004 November a Tiwi Island Indigenous man from Wurankuwu, Bathurst Island, twenty one years of age completed suicide by hanging in the context of being acutely intoxicated with alcohol. He had been drinking with his sister at the Ranku Club where he was drinking VB full strength beer but was not regarded as a heavy drinker. He left the club with his father and then went to talk with his uncle about being teased because he was gay and also disclosed that he intended to end his life because of the teasing. His uncle talked to the deceased and telling him told him strongly not to do it and walked home with him. Once at home he became violent and throwing things at his sister but also pleading with his sister to “help me” but she said she could not help him while he was drunk but would talk to him when he was sober. He left the house very angry and didn’t return but was found the following morning hanging at a landmark site (Telstra radio compound) in the community. The Ranku clinic staff attended but he was deceased. It appears the he had become “overwhelmingly upset by feelings that he was being discriminated against by others in the community because of his sexuality” as he identified as a “Sister Girl” a term used by the Tiwi to describe homosexuality. While heavily intoxicated with alcohol he was overwhelmed with these feelings of rejection and he took his own life.

Gay and homosexually active Aboriginal men in Sydney. (Alternate Link) - Aboriginal Reconciliation: A statement of support from Sydney Gay & Lesbian community organizations. (Alternate Link) - For the first time, an Aboriginal float will feature in Sydney's Gay Mardi Gras parade. - Gay and homosexually active Aboriginal men in Sydney - Bibliography. - The highlight for many was the moving speech - "Black & Gay" - by Aboriginal gay man, Noel Tovey {in Sidney). - The only Aborigine and lesbian in the world. - National Indigenous Gay and Transgender Consultation Report and Sexual Health Strategy (PDF)  and First National Indigenous Sistergirl Forum (PDF). - A Risky Business: Criminalising the Transmission of HIV in Australia. - Gay Australia Aborigine Resources. - Indigenous LGBT Young People Resources.

Queers for Reconciliation (Alternate Link):  - ANWERNEKENHE II was the second national conference for Indigenous Australian gay men and sista girls. And as Gary Lee writes, it was a time for breaking silences, making  resolutions, and naming some deep-running waters. - Vast distances... Vast differences: "There have been many "explanations" for the outrageous discrepancies between the health levels of Indigenous Australians and the health of non-Indigenous people. Transgender and Queer Communities. - Young, gay, black, green and female. - Boys to Men. - Anwernekenhe is an Arrernte word, meaning “us mob”. Anwernekenhe I was the first ever gathering of Indigenous gay men and sistergirls. Coming together for the First National Indigenous Australian Gay Men and Transgender Sexual Health Conference. Participants gathered together on the lands of the Arrernte people at Hamilton Downs, Central Australia in 1994, sharing their concerns and experiences of sexual health and well-being: Anwernekenhe I, Hamilton Downs, 1994 (PDF) and Anwernekenhe II, Tambourine Mountain, 1998 (PDF).

Anwernekenhe IV, fourth national Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay, sistergirl and transgender HIV/AIDS – sexual health conference: "The National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Sexual Health & Blood Borne Virus Strategy 2005 – 2008, identifies Australian indigenous gay men, sistergirls, transgender and men who have sex with men as a priority group for HIV/AIDS and sexual health responses. The majority of HIV transmission of indigenous Australians’ is attributed to male-to-male sex." - Western Australian Aboriginal Sexual Health Strategy 2005–2008 (2005: (PDF Download, Download Page, Alternate Link, Alternate Link). - Aboriginal health on the road to nowhere with unfunded policies (2007, Note: Therefore No hope for the health issues of sexual minority aboriginal people!). - Indigenous issues – do the major parties really give a damn? (2010). 

ANWERNEKENHE III -Third National indigenous Gay, Sistergirl and Transgender HIV/AIDS and Sexual Health Conference (2002, PDF Download): Strengthening Communities Through Prevention – Peer Education & Partnerships: "Day two of conference proceedings provided an Indigenous gay, sistergirl and transgender only stream, giving participants a confidential and supportive cultural space to discuss specific Indigenous gay, sistergirl and transgender community business. This was well received by all delegates and recommended for all future forums. Two of the most significant issues discussed at Anwernekenhe III were that of injecting drug use and child sexual abuse... - Breaking The Silence: Indigenous, Gay, Transgender, Sistergirl Sexual Abuse Workshop (by Gary Lee): "Our workshop on sexual abuse was about ‘breaking the silence’, and about giving ourselves permission to talk about our experiences, without feeling like there was something wrong with us. It is also about the community acknowledging that there is a problem. We hope it will force the community to confront the reality of just what is going on because it is not just our issue it is a community one... There have been few if any specific statistics collected, and even less social research conducted on Indigenous gay and transgender/sistergirl sexual abuse. In recent times, the calls for recognition of and action against Indigenous heterosexual abuse have risen around the country, largely through the initiatives and tireless efforts of Indigenous people themselves, with various levels of support from state and federal governments. It’s now time that we as Indigenous gay, transgender/sistergirl members of our communities gain the same levels of support for the sexual abuse issues facing us today. The cultural, social and emotional well being of our communities depends on it.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Project: The primary aims Project are (Home Page: NTAHC): To provide Indigenous gay and bisexual men, and transgender people (sistergirls) with gender specific and culturally appropriate information, education and support to reduce the risk of transmission of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections (STI's). Enhance the sexual health and well being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay, bi-sexual men and transgender people (sistergirls), to enable them to make informed decisions and achieve and maintain control of their own sexual health. - New Page: Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islanders (ATSI).

International Day against Homophobia (2010, PDF) by NTAHC: LGBT in Indigenous communities: Just like any culture, there are many Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islanders that identify as LGBT. Similarly, like any culture there are ATSI peoples who despite sexual attraction, do not openly identify as LGBT. In many Indigenous communities, LGBT have existed and been an accepted part of the community pre-colonisation. A term often used in Indigenous Australia to refer to transgendered people is sistergirls. Sistergirls: Sister is often for someone who identifies as a gay man. Sistergirl is used for someone who identifies as transgender or has transgendered qualities. Sistergirl maybe someone who: Wants to live as the opposite gender, May be in the process of changing gender, Lives as someone of the opposite sex, Was born with sexual parts of both genders.Believes mentally and socially that they were born the wrong gender. 

Queensland Survey of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Men who have Sex with Men (2004, PDF Download, Alternate Link): This was the first time a sexual risk study focusing on homosexually active men, had been carried out with a specific Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander target group. Issues of ethical sensitivity and cultural awareness needed to be considered before we could proceed... While the study did not reach its intended sample size of 300, it has provided a useful insight into Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander homosexual men’s sexual behaviour. It has allowed us to explore risk behaviour and associated issues within this population for the first time... In total 233 men filled in questionnaires for the study... The term ‘sistergirl’ refers to a specific type of gender fluidity among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. While not all sistergirls are transgendered, we have used the term ‘sistergirl’ throughout to refer to this group... The qualitative interviews were semi-structured and audio-recorded. The issues covered included a range of topics identified during the administration of the survey and after the preliminary analyses of the survey data... We asked MSM whether they had experienced discrimination from within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community based on their sexuality (Table 3.13). Well over a third reported some form of discrimination although most described it as being ‘occasional’ rather than ‘often’... We also asked whether they had experienced discrimination from within the gay community based on their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background (Table 3.14). About half reported some discrimination although, again, most described it as being ‘occasional’ rather than ‘often’... Thirty six (22.5%) of the MSM, but none of the non-MSM, reported they had ever been violently sexually assaulted.... About one in six MSM, and a slightly smaller proportion of non-MSM, had been incarcerated (Table 7.1)... Formal education levels were not as high in this sample as is commonly found in studies of gay men: Few reported attending university. Just a third of the participants reported being in full time employment and about as many reported they were either unemployed or working for the Community Development Employment Program (CDEP). This suggests the sample was educationally disadvantaged and somewhat disadvantaged socio-economically... The experience of discrimination, particularly that based on race from within gay communities, was more widespread than might be expected and certainly warrants some sort of response. It is perhaps a testament to the men’s own strength of character that in this context they showed so little evidence of low self-esteem. Nonetheless, it is noteworthy that so few men reported being in a relationship with, or having, a regular male partner, particularly when compared with other samples of gay men, which raises some troubling questions...

Video presentation: ‘Sistergirls' – Stories from Indigenous Australian Transgenders (2006, Related Information): "A ‘story telling' video-documentary of four Indigenous Australian sistergirls this documentary projects positive images of Indigenous Australian sistergirls - giving people an insight into why we live our lives the way we do. It also raises a number of issues that have, and continue to impact on our lives... The use of the term ‘sistergirl' is a self adopted term, recognising that the western definitions of transgender or gay do not reflect the culture and lived reality of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander transgender people...In the documentary the sistergirls talk about sistergirl identity and explain how this term is used in Indigenous communities." - Indigenous Homosexuality: Aboriginal Gay And Transgender People - Silences In Indigenous Sexuality: Colonial homophobia marginalised homosexual and transgender Aborigines. But intolerance was never part of traditional life, as seen in the story of the Tiwi Sistergirls... Sistergirls don't like to be referred to as "gays". They prefer the term "women". They also reject a lot of the myths about them, both from the mainstream and from Indigenous society. Firstly, they reject the claim that they are "unnatural". A Sistergirl is born, not made. It is clear by the age of two or three if a person has been born this way, and when they get to the age of six, parents give them to older sistergirls to look after because they're in that special category..."

Reflecting on Practice: Current challenges in gay and other homosexually active men’s HIV education (by Gary Smith & Paul Van de Ven, National Centre in HIV Social Research, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, The University of New South Wales, 2001 - PDF Download): "Challenges identified by the Indigenous educators (those working with Indigenous gay and homosexually active men / Sistergirls) included: ... Keeping sistergirl issues a priority on the service providers’ agenda was identified as a challenge and required constant contact with the providers to reinforce the importance of such issues. Racial prejudice among White gay men was identified as a major concern. This was especially a problem for Indigenous men involved in predominantly White gay settings. - Homophobia within Indigenous communities was also identified as a major concern, with attitudes being expressed along the lines of, “They’re all just sickos”. - Despite the homophobia experienced by sistergirls within their communities, the educators claimed that most sistergirls were nevertheless respected within their communities. This respect, however, had less to do with being sistergirls per se and more to do, for example, with being employed (where unemployment is generally high). Sistergirls’ respect seemed also to be contingent upon their keeping a low profile with regard to their sexual activities, which served to hamper open discussion and other education efforts... - Interactions between sistergirls and their sex partners were characterised as “short and sweet” and as “a quick bang in the bushes with some man who is not getting it from his wife”. This was often the only source of sexual interaction and/or affection sistergirls received. If the choice was between sex without condoms and no sex at all, the choice was likely to be the former... - Certain men (heterosexually identified and often married) were known by sistergirls as potential sexual partners and sistergirls shared this information among themselves. The rest of the community, however, was kept in the dark. Sistergirls’ sexual partners were identified as the biggest barrier to developing a safe sex culture among homosexually active men within Murri communities... - The issue of sexual assault, sometimes at a young age, was identified. Providing a safe environment for sistergirls (e.g. a safe house) was considered important. But even this measure was thought to be beyond QuAC’s resource capabilities (and perhaps jurisdiction)..."

GLBT/Sistergirls Research (Alternate Link): I am a young gay researcher of Mauritian background. I'm currently a PhD candidate in Health and Social Anthropology at the University of Provence (France) and I arrived in Australia 3 months ago to further a research project about Australian Indigenous GLBT/sistergirls experiences in urban settings. I collected about 50 life stories over 2 previous fieldworks and I am still seeking more participants in every States. The semi-directed interviews last about 1 hour and 30 minutes; it is anonymous and conducted in a culturally sensitive and respectful manner..." - "Sistergirls: stories from Indigenous Australian transgender people (2004)"  by Kooncha  Brown: Abstract: The use of the term 'sistergirl' is a self adopted term, recognising that western definitions of transgender or gay do not reflect the culture and lived reality of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander transgendered people. There are low levels of acceptance and awareness of transgender/sistergirl culture. The lack of acceptance forces sistergirls to become invisible, which then leads to a lack of awareness of sistergirl culture - a vicious cycle. - Aboriginal and Islander Health Worker Journal, 28(6) Dec 2004: 25-26: 'Sistergirls are Doing it for Themselves' by Michael Costello &  'Sistergirls' by Kooncha Brown. 

For all Australians? (Alternate Link) In a time when many are hailing advances in HIV/AIDS treatments, and lauding Australia's response to HIV as exemplary, just how proud of our record should we be? Gay, Indigenous and HIV positive, Rodney Junga-Williams tells a different story. For Aboriginal Australians, he writes, its a question of: What access? Whose equality? - Survival '99 Queer, black and speaking out. - Gay Aborigines to gather for second 'Corroborree' (1997). - 'BlackOUT' is a newsletter by and for Aboriginal gay people. - OutBlack (Victoria) - This section looks at homophobia and its impact on Indigenous people - those from the first peoples of the land and sea in Australia. - SISSY [a 30-minute documentary] takes you behind the scenes to give a rare insight into a sub culture that has created its own space within the gay culture, and it explores the bond that sets the black ‘sisterhood’ apart from the white gays. SISSY is an expression of gay black identity: “We are glamorous, we are here and we are queer”: PDF Download.

Race, Sexuality and Education. What does it mean to be Aboriginal and gay in education in Australia? (Related Information) - Going That Way (2000): "'…homosexuality has existed here for a long time, its not a White man's disease - its probably the only thing we didn't catch off the White man!' - Rea Saunders, Gay Perspectives II, (ed.) Robert Aldrich, Sydney Uni Press, 1994, p.9 Going That Way to me is about life energy, commitment and resistance. It is one of the least bullshit exhibitions I have ever been to. Ali Baker, 2000." - Postcolonial Nationalisms and the Problem of Heterosexual Whiteness. - Black-banning homophobia. - "Too Busy Studying and No Time for Sex?" Homosexually Active Male International Students and Sexual Health [in Australia]: PDF Download N/A. (Related Information: PDF Download N/A) - The end of gay? (2000, PDF Download: some information on the gay aboriginal situation.)

Lesbians in Sydney (2009): It is likely that sexual relationships between Aboriginal women constituted recognised forms of sexual behaviour which were included in ritual activities prior to European settlement. However, very few accounts of same-sex activity between women exist from this period and it is therefore extremely difficult to draw any firm conclusions for the Sydney region. Those accounts that are available in written form were produced by Europeans after settlement and can therefore only offer a limited and potentially inaccurate picture of female homosexual activity in Australia before 1788... Nevertheless, an ilpindja or love magic song in which women show their labia to each other, was reported by Geza Roheim, an anthropologist working in Central Australia in the late 1920s, suggesting that Aboriginal oral literature may also have referred to female same-sex activity... Aboriginal lesbians have been increasingly vocal in the 1990s in challenging Anglo-Australian notions of lesbian identity and reshaping attitudes toward the relationship between race and sexuality.  

Black + White + Pink is a group of volunteers from the lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual community who have come together to ensure that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues remain on the agenda of the gay and lesbian community in New South wales. - Sweeties for a Treaty. - Sydney Mardi Gras!!! Black+White+Pink (2002). - Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander participation in Sidney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras 2000. - Mardi Gras 2001. - Black+White+Pink Consultation Forum (1999). - Gay Perspectives II - 1994 - edited by Robert Aldrich: "This volume includes articles on homosexuality in traditional and contemporary Aboriginal life; the life of a homosexual convict in colonial Australia..." Gays and Lesbians Aboriginal Alliance, ‘Peopling the Empty Mirror: The Prospects for Lesbian and Gay Aboriginal History’, in Aldrich (ed.), Gay Perspectives II, pp. 1-62

Silverfoxes Club Digest: "He also thought that the Aborigines were ignorant of homo-eroticism. When he was asked about conditions in the colonies, particularly about .unnatural acts., the Bishop noted that those crimes were unknown to .the savage. until they were taught them by the convict. We know this to be false. Anthropological evidence points to the institutional arrangements and ritual practice among some of the native groups. These ranged from permissive sexual arrangements between a man and his wife.s brother (since the latter belonged to the same marriage class as his wife) to men masturbating each other before setting out on a warrior mission. One of Ullathorne.s great concerns was with the moral contamination of the young. He laid much emphasis on the way in which boys and young men became educated about unnatural activities.."

‘Kerryn and Jackie’:  Thinking Historically about Lesbian Marriages (by Barnara Baird, PDF Download): "The Gays and Lesbians Aboriginal Alliance (GLAA) give an account of the how homosexuality has appeared in historical records, mainly anthropological, about indigenous peoples in Australia. While noting the scarcity of recorded information about indigenous women’s sexuality generally, the GLAA nevertheless quote Phyllis Kaberry’s contribution with respect to the Kimberley district: ‘The lesbian relationships of Australian women were an acknowledged part of their sexual behaviour and were included in their ritual activities’. The author's comment that it was when Aboriginal communities felt the full brunt of colonisation and Aboriginal people were institutionalised in missions and reserves that ‘the social structures in which homosexual relationships were integrated began to collapse’. The GLAA’s article concludes with reference to US queer theorist Michael Warner’s claim that ‘the heterosexualization of society was … a fundamental imperative of modern colonialism’."

Then and Now: Gay Men and HIV (2003, PDF Download, Alternate Link): "The experience and possibilities of doing gayness and Indigeneity are discussed in various ways and places (Gays and Lesbians Aboriginal Alliance 1993; Willis 2003a, b). Of relevance here too is Gregory Phillips’ Addictions and Healing in Aboriginal Country (2003). HIV positive Indigenous gay men and sistergirls are included, but not differentiated by sexual identity, in Willis et al (2002b). The Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations has auspiced community consultations and major documents on Indigenous Australian gay men and transgender people and on sexual health (AFAO 1998a, b). Three Indigenous gay men’s accounts of gayness and community can be found in Hodge (1993). Hurley (1996: 1-2) contains a bibliography. Wayne King speaks autobiographically (1998) and Sydney experiences appear in Brady (2001). Tony Ayres’ film Double Trouble (1991) and Noel Tovey’s play Little Black Bastard (Benzie 2003) are also key documents. While discrimination appears as a major issue in all of them, there are also complex discussions of how sociality, the scene and community are negotiated."

Double Trouble, film by Tony Ayres (1991. Tony Ayres): Interviews with indigenous gay men and lesbians in Australia discuss the problems of being a minority within a minority. - Double Trouble: a documentary celebration of living with the twin identities of being gay or lesbian and Aboriginal in Australia. A joyful and lively group of gay men and lesbians tell stories from their lives- from early discoveries of sexuality, to experiences of prejudice within the gay scene, to the issues which arise from being gay or lesbian in the urban Aboriginal community. Commissioned by Channel Four in the UK, Double Trouble is a playful, exuberant and insightful look into a rarely seen community.  

Black Hours (by Wayne King). Wayne King: "Over several years, he had thoroughly uprooted himself from a culture in which he and his kind were the object of racism. He lived in a world that was relatively autonomous from the person-defining processes of family and nation. One word that describes this semi-detached world is ‘impersonal’; here was ‘impersonality’ in a benign form, the demands and opportunities of international bureaucracy and of gay sexuality combining to foster an ethos of personal liberty..." - Re-historicising 'Racism' (2005, Alternate Link): Language, History and Healing in Wayne King's Black Hours: Although education rarely fulfilled its promise to open doors for Aboriginal people, the 'sissies' course' allowed King to earn good money, remain in steady employment, and avoid what he calls the 'manual labour mentality that pervaded the Aboriginal community'. His office skills also proved to be his 'passport out of Ipswich'... As a gay Aboriginal, however, in racist, homophobic Australia, King was doubly marginalised on the basis of both race and sexuality. He experienced racial prejudice from the gay community, and homophobia amongst sections of the Aboriginal community. He recalls being picked up by a gay man in a car, and thrown out again as soon as the man learned he was Aboriginal. Even more hurtful was his discovery of the depth of racial prejudice amongst his gay friends: "Rejected and spurned by society for being homosexual, they had spoken angrily of the discrimination they had to face. Yet they saw nothing wrong in their attitude towards me; saw nothing to condemn in themselves... Those white boys in that room thought that a racist was some yobbo in a blue Chesty Bond singlet, shorts and thongs with a beer can in one hand, the other scratching his balls. The subtlety of racism had escaped them. If you had an education, you couldn't be racist. Terry's racist comment [that the right place for Aborigines was in the bottom of an ash-tray] had tipped the scales for me. Gays may have been outsiders, but as a gay Aborigine, I might as well have been from Mars.""

Little Black Bastard: "It was during the early 1950s at school that the sexual abuse he had experienced as a young child was crystallised. Tovey was attractive to boys. He was, despite his colour, welcomed into their circle, but only if he paid with sexual favours. His unsparing recollections about the many beatings he endured for being black and frequent rapes while at school, are unsettling. Remarkably, he looks for no sympathy, he expresses no bitterness. He knew men wanted him, but his own homosexuality was not evident until later... Besides his clear artistic interest and developing skill as a dancer, Tovey was, by the mid-1950s, also a teenage rent-boy. "I was inured to the act of sex," he says. "My obvious good looks, exotically coloured body and total lack of morals were my entree to some of the best addresses in Melbourne." It was also at this time, he says, that the defining moment in his life occurred. After a police raid on a drag party in Albert Park that Tovey was attending, he was charged with buggery. He was sent to Pentridge. He was soon released, but not before he went through his own dark night of the soul. He contemplated suicide and was visited by a profound sense of his indigenous self..." Review. Interview.

Gender Trouble Down Under: Australian Masculinities (2002): "is divided into seven chapters... Then Chapter VII, entitled “Double Trouble,” addresses lesbian and gay aborigines, the amazing destiny of Australian performance artist Leigh Bowery abroad (Bowery, extreme transgenderist, has recently been incarnated by Boy George on Broadway), and finally transgendered and transsexual individuals and politics."

Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO):  - The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Gay, Sistergirl and Transgender HIV/AIDS – Sexual Health Project..- Indigenous Projects: AFAO Strategy for responding to sexual abuse of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay men and sistergirls: This document, published May 2005, proposes some specific interventions that might be trialled to determine their effectiveness in reducing sexual abuse. - Hot Chocolate: Access for all training packages addressing Indigenous gay men and transgender / sistergirl's access to HIV and sexual health services. - First National Indigenous Sistergirl Forum (PDF Download).

Risk behaviour among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay men: comparisons with other gay men in Australia (2006). -  Anwernekenhe 4 Report (2006). - Indigenous Health and Wellbeing: Culture, Context and Colonisation: Practice within LGBTI Organisations (2010, Three Presentations, Abstracts): 1. A health retreat for NSW aboriginal gay men living with HIV: learnings and discussion. 2. Reflection on contemporary and evolved communications with aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay men and sistergirls in FNQ and beyond.. 3. NTAHC 2010 sistergirl retreat – MT Bundy.

Willis J (2003). The Worst of All Possible Worlds: Gay Indigenous Australians Living with HIV. Structural Inequality and HIV/AIDS at the Global and National Level Conference, Yale University, New Haven, April 2003 (Citation).

Yackandandah Aboriginal Art Show 1st Gay theme aboriginal art (2009). - Rainbow Dreaming Aboriginal Art Show Spring Migration Gay Lesbian Festival Theme (Video Reporting, Alternate Link). - World History – Gay / Lesbian themed Aboriginal Art Show Yackandandah a huge success (2009). 

Jack Charles is Bastardy: a 63-year-old homosexual Aboriginal elder, award-winning actor, professional cat burglar and former junkie. A child of the stolen generation, Charles drifted into Melbourne's bohemian underground in the early 60s, where he found the theatre, a lover, heroin and a talent for cat burglary. Between long stints in jail he's also maintained a successful acting career. - Bastardy (2008).

Sample Policy & Procedures Manual For Services funded under the Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (SAAP) N/A: "Indigenous (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander): The National Indigenous Sexual Health Strategy (NIASHS) states that sexual health includes the personal rights to freedom from fear, shame, guilt and myths about choice of sexuality and sexual relationships. Multiple risk factors include the variety of identities, where the balance between race, sexuality and gender identity is complex and may vary over time. The term “Sistergirl” refers primarily to a transgender male to female within the Indigenous communities, an Eastern States term which is being used more and more in WA. There are many Indigenous cultures partly or fully accepting of people with DSG. Some of the specific areas for Indigenous people with DSG are:

Fear of being “outed”, particularly in the rural communities. - Lack of confidentiality in service provision. - Community and social relations, where service users are related to service staff. - Absence of Aboriginal Medical Service’s (AMS) in rural areas. - Local AMS not equipped to deal with DSG issues, as well as HIV, sexually transmitted infections (STI) and other sexual health. - Alienation from Indigenous and non-indigenous health services for reasons of actual and perceived homophobia. - Lack of acceptance of DSG within Indigenous communities. It is sometimes seen as a ‘whitefella’ disease. - Lesbian women may hide their sexuality and even live in a heterosexual relationship. - Racism from the DSG community, as well as internalised. Internalisation of culture of violence. - Some research has identified adult male to youth male rape by men who have sex with men (MSM), but don’t identify as gay and often have wife and children. - Increased risk of HIV and other STI’s due to unprotected sex, either mutually agreed or sexual abuse/rape. This includes risk to wives by their MSM partners. - Opportunistic or commercial sex work for survival, financially and otherwise. - Injecting drug use, alcohol and other drug abuse. - Displacement from home and families due to perceived or real non-acceptance. - Dual identities, which can not always be harmoniously combined. - Difficulty in talking about sex, including safe sex. - Lack of positive role models. - Indigenous lesbian women are rarely visible and little is known about their particular issues. - Indigenous female to male transgender people are even less visible.
There are many diverse Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities that are different in language, land and cultures. Each has different ways of talking about sex, sexuality and gender. Many say that their sexual identity decides what someone’s life will be like. For some people, who they live with and enjoy being with, defines who they are and their identity. For many Indigenous people these ideas don’t explain who they are, as they have a more holistic view of themselves and their relationships within their community or with other people. For many Indigenous people their DSG does not determine their role in the community. When they are born they are taught who to talk to and who their mob is, as well as their relationships to other people in the community. They are told who they can sleep with and who they can’t. This is also true for Indigenous people identifying with sexuality and/or gender diversity. Family relationships are very important for the acceptance in their community for people identifying with sexuality and gender diversity. Many will find these relationships too hard and un-accepting and will leave their community to live in bigger cities.

Cover, Rob (2010, Author Information). 'Politicising Queer Issues and Activism: Disciplinarity, Biopolitics and the Means by which Activist Issues Enter the Public Sphere.' Reconstruction: Studies in Contemporary Culture, 10(3) (Special Issue: Inventions of Activism). Full Text.
Excerpts related to GLB youth suicide issues being ignored by GLB communities: Why queer youth suicide tends to be marginalised as a political issue within lesbian/gay politics is due to a complex set of relationships. Partly, it results from the fact that suicide remains a relatively ‘taboo’ topic in many cultural formations even today (Battin 1995: 19-20). Where suicide is deemed to be not only a sin, an illness, a crime but also a failure, absenting it from public discourse results from lesbian/gay political imperatives to present a figure of the homosexual that is stable, sane, law-abiding and successful. Michael Warner makes the point that this has been common in much recent gay politics, most recently witnessed in the challenges against military rules banning homosexuals or discrimination within the Boy scouts movements: great pains are taken to find test cases in which the victim is a “model victim because he or she has never done anything wrong” (Warner 1999: 29). Warner’s point here can be expanded to suggest that it is not just sexually active citizens who are banned from portrayal as model test-cases, but young suicidal citizens whose suicidality can inadvertently be read to suggest that homosexuals are less-than-stable individuals, are mentally-ill or are in some other way defective—precisely as old stereotypes of the ‘sad young man’ (Dyer 1993: 22, 42, 73-92) or the unstable, monstrous lesbian (Creed 1995:87) indicated... Absenting the issue from public perception can be understood, then, as a non-conscious action to protect a positive image of non-heterosexual persons as stable, sane, happy and moral. That is, any identifiable social problem among a minority group is seized by those opposed to that group’s rights agenda, often recirculating negative stereotypes (Cover 2004). Heavy recreational drug use among gay men (Lewis & Ross 1995: 98), for example, has often been utilised in damning attacks by Christian conservatives on gay culture. Submerging issues such as the high rate of youth suicide, the high levels of same-sex domestic violence (Island & Lettelier 1991) or the degree of economic disparity among lesbians and gay men (Pharr 1997: 54-55) has been an important political tactic. However, while these arrangements and choices certainly contribute to the silence from lesbian/gay political activists on the topic, and while they stem from both lesbian/gay organisations and community media’s roles in political ‘agenda setting’ (Goddard 1996), the mechanisms by which lesbian/gay political organisations operate do not foreclose on the possibility to introduce topics, goals and plans for lobbying and other political activities within areas that might be unpopular or controversial. Understanding how and why a broad, globalising lesbian/gay culture itself has not taken the ‘necessary risk’ of more openly incorporating youth suicide into its array of cultural and political concerns involves the important reason that lesbian/gay lobby politics internationally is dominated by a liberal ‘civil rights’ approach that seeks legislative change and anti-discriminatory protections on the understanding that such reforms will invoke a trickle-down effect and alter the state of cultural marginalisation of lesbian/gay youth. It is more difficult to intervene directly in areas of discursive change that do not have at least a gestural structure for dialogue or intervention, as does the political lobbying arena. Such lobby politics has focused more recently on issues of same-sex marriage rights or civil union bills, and this has been the result of particular ideological perspectives that have dominated lesbian/gay politics since the mid-1980s (Cover 2004). Such liberal-democratic perspectives are arguably ‘middle class’, and ‘middle aged’, and rarely take into account factors that affect sexually diverse youth such as suicide, homelessness, a sense of cultural isolation or access to the necessary resources through which to forge identity. The funding and time of any broad-based rights movement is always finite, and some fields of intervention are inevitably ignored.    

Cover, Rob (2011). The Chasm and the Abyss: Queer Theory and the Socialities of Queer Youth Suicide. Interalia, 6(1): 1-22. PDF Download.
Excerpt: After two decades of queer theory, as the application of poststructuralist theory in the fields of gender and sexuality, we have a powerful set of tools for the investigation and understanding of the complexity, multiplicity and cultural constitution of sexual identity. These tools, however, are rarely used in contemporary discussions, academic literature, intervention strategies, policy and service provision for youth at risk of suicide and self-harm. Whether suicide is understood through mental health frameworks or through the relationship between the individual and sociality, it is never disconnected from the ways in which identity is constructed and performed in cultural contexts; this connection is even more pertinent in the case of sexuality which, unlike other axes of identity, involves particularly trajectories of becoming in a normalising framework, whether those be heteronormative or homonormative 'expectations'. Drawing on the insights of queer theory on the constructedness and multiplicity of sexuality, this paper seeks to provide a framework for future pragmatic ways in which sexuality-related risk factors in youth suicide can be addressed by opening the field of 'available discourses' of sexuality. It discusses some of the ways in which the constraint of sexuality under the regime of the hetero/homo binary can be understood as contributing to youth suicides. It is to see that, for an individual subject, felt sexual erotics that may fall outside the dominant discourses of sexuality and remain unrepresented poses a significant risk in a society which demands a particularly narrow set of sexual identities (hetero/homo) and subjective coherence, intelligibility and recognisability (Cover, "Queer Subjects of Suicide")...


Cover, Rob (2012)
. Mediating Suicide: Print Journalism and the Categorization of Queer Youth Suicide Discourses. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 41: 1173–1183. Abstract. Full Text.

Abstract: This article undertakes textual analysis to examine some of the ways in which knowledge around sexuality-related youth suicide and its causes are produced and made available through news media discourses and news-making processes. Four categories of sexuality-related suicide discourses were identified in news stories and features over the past 20 years: statistical research that makes non-heterosexuality implicit as a cause of suicide; stories about deviancy, guilt, and shame; suicide survivor stories; and bullying/harassment of non-heterosexual persons by individuals in schools and other institutions as suicide cause. Through processes of news production and meaning-making, use of expert opinions of primary definers, experiential accounts, reliance on citations of quantitative data, private accounts given as entertainment, and the newsworthiness of suicide as drama, public knowledge on queer youth suicide is guided by contemporary journalism. In all cases, the underlying relationship between heteronormativity, mental health, depression, and despair were frequently excluded in news journalism on queer youth suicide.

Cover, Rob (2012). Queer Youth Suicide, Culture and Identity. Introduction. News Item: Same-sex marriage not the answer: expert (2012)... Same-sex marriage and anti-bullying policies will not prevent the high rate of suicide among young gay people, according to a researcher at The University of Western Australia... "Same-sex marriage can increase the distinctions between queer people, making some feel more alienated and unable to aspire to happiness," Associate Professor Cover said. "It is not where resources for improving the lives of queer youth ought to be directed - more needs to be done around bullying and representation." Associate Professor Cover's research points out that marriage and relationships are not the primary concerns of the small but important minority of gay youth struggling with intolerable emotional pain, bullying, identity issues or pressures leading to mental health concerns... "Young queer people are coming out much earlier and there is broader family and community acceptance." Yet while life is significantly better for many gay adults, Associate Professor Cover argues that young gay people still seek suicide as an escape from unbearable or unliveable lives. See Also: WA Prof queries role of legalising gay marriage in reducing gay suicide (2012). Is same-sex marriage an adequate response to queer youth suicide? (2012).


Note: - One more related paper by Rob Cover that are related to GLB suicidality issues should become available:
 
Cover, Rob (forthcoming). 'Sad, Sick & Alien Identities: Representing Queer Suicide in Popular Culture'. Sexualities.



GLB Suicidality Study Results: Australia & New Zealand

"Attempted Suicide" Incidences/Risks: New Zealand &
Australian
Homosexually Oriented Youth or Adults
Study
Sample
Size (N)
GLB
Compa-
rison
Group
Attempted
Suicide
% (n / N)
Sampling Information
Age
Odds Ratio (95% CI)
Nicholas &
Howard
(1998)

57 (M*)
Gay
Identified
54 (M)
Heterosexual
Identified
28.1%
(16 / 56) vs.
7.4% (4 / 54)
Lifetime
Australian Volunteers: Sidney Area
Mean Age: 20.6 Years
53.2% Post=Secondary Students
OR: 5.0 (1.5, 16.1)
Kelly
et al.
(1998)

164 (M)
HIV +
None
21.4%
Lifetime
Australia: Convenience Sample
Homosexual & Bisexual Males
From Sidney, Victoria and Brisbane.
Mean Age: 32.5, 20 to 60 Years
Attempted Suicide Incidence for All Homosexual/Bisexual Males: 25.2%
165 (M)
HIV -
None
29.1%
Lifetime
Fenaughty
(2000)
Thesis

111 (M)
83.8%
Gay or
Homosexual
Self-
Described
None
20.7%
(23 / 111)
Lifetime
New Zealand Volunteers: Auckland
52.3% European Ancestry
Age = 16 to 26 Years
Suicide Attempts verified via
descriptions of Suicide Attempt(s).
Some Study Related Information:
Fenaughty & Harre (2003)
Welch
et al.
(2000)

561 (W*)
95.2%
Lesbian
Identified
None
20.3%
(114 / 561)
Lifetime
Volunteer: New Zealand
87.5% European Ancestry
Age Range: 19 to 66 Years
 84.2%: Between 25 to 50 Years
First Attempted Suicide:

80.7% Before the Age of 25 Years
Nicholas
& Howard
(2001)

105 (M)
Gay
Identified
94 (M)
Heterosexual
Identified
20.8% vs
5.4%
Lifetime
Sidney, Australia, Mostly Metropolitan
Mean Age: 21.8 Years, 16 to 30 Years
76 (F)
Lesbian
Identified
192 (F)
Heterosexual
Identified

20.0% vs.
8.3%
Lifetime
Sidney, Australia, Mostly Metropolitan
Mean Age: 21.3 Years, 16 to 30 Years
Thorpy
et al.
(2008)

164 (MF)
None
37%
Lifetime
Internet Sample: Queensland, Australia
Age Range: 14-20, Mean Age: 17
54% Male, 44.5% Female, 0.6% Gender Queer.
89% Urban. 72% Gay/Lesbian, 23% Bisexual. 50% in High School, 20% Working, 9% at University
164 (MF)
None
59%
Self-Harm
Past year
Lea
(2011)
318 SSA
Males (M)
None
17%
Lifetime
Internet Sample, Sidney, Australia, Same-Sex Attracted M / F: 77% / 79.1% Anglo-Australian, European. Study participants only identified as male or female; all gender queer, transgender, etc. were removed. Age Range: 18 to 25 Years, Mean: 21.49 years (SD = 2.24). More Below.
None
28%
Self-Harm
Lifetime
254 SSA
Females (F)
None
30%
Lifetime
None
63%
Self-Harm
Lifetime
Lea et al.
(2014)

301
Gay Males
None
17.0%
Lifetime
Same as Above: Lea (2011). Plus:

Cross-sectional 2010 online survey. Participants recruited over a 3-month period. Eligible participants were young adults aged 18–25 years who identified as same-sex attracted and lived or regularly spent time in Sydney. Participants were recruited via paid advertisements on Facebook (58%), e-mail lists of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) organizations (27 %), and news items posted on LGBT websites (11%) and in the LGBT street press (4%).

17 Bisexual Males
None
0.0%
Lifetime
146
Lesbians
None
28.8%
Lifetime
108 Bisexual
Females
None
30.6%
Lifetime
Luke
et al.
(2013)
160
Kooris
Youth
21.2%
34 / 160
Suicide Ideation,
Past 2
Weeks
50%
6 / 12

p = .034

Data from the VAHS Young People’s
Project (YPP) study, Only Round 1 (1997/1998)
data collection - not Round 2 (2000/2001) - used in study. 172 Australian Aboriginal Kooris youth study participants from Melbourne, 43.6% male (75 / 172), Mean Age = 19 Years, SD = 4 Years, Age range 12 to 26.
N= 12 homosexual or bisexual youth.
Data/Results: generated from given data by webpage authors.

Questions:
Suicide ideation: In the last two weeks, have you had thoughts that you would be better off dead or hurting yourself in some way?
• Suicide attempt: Have you ever tried to kill yourself (attempt suicide)?
160
Kooris
Youth
23.7%
38 / 160
Suicide
Attempt,
Lifetime
33.3%
4 / 12

p = ns
* M = Males - F = Females





"Attempted Suicide" Incidences/Risks: New Zealand &
Australian
Homosexually Oriented Youth or Adults
Random Study Samples
Study
Sample
Size (N)
GLB
Compa-
rison
Group
Attempted
Suicide
% (n / N)
Sampling Information
Age
Odds Ratio (95% CI)
Fleming
 et al. (2007)
2001 Random
School Sample
New
Zealand
N = 9,570
Not Given
Also NOT Given
 is Number of same-sex and
both-sex attracted individuals, that is somewhat equivalent to GLB
Not Given
For all Males: 4.7%
For all Females:
10.5%
Not Given
OR: 1.3<1.7<2.4
For Having Attempted Suicide, Past Year, Non-Heterosexual vs. Heterosexual. with 20 Control Variable!
"Non-heterosexual orientation was defined as being attract to the same sex (as oneself), both sexes, neither sex or not sure."
The Existence of the LeBrun et al (2004) Report - below - is not mentioned by Fleming et al. (2007)
GLB Results Estimates: Table Below.
Le Brun et al. (2004)
2001 Random
School Sample
New Zealand
N = 8,997
701
7.8% of Sample
8,696
92.2% of Sample
15.3% vs.
7.2%
(Approx.)
Past Year
Question Asked: "Which of the following are you sexually attracted to…?" Non-Heterosexual: Same-Sex (68, 0.75%), Both-Sex (277, 3.1%), Unsure (206, 2.3%), Neither (150, 1.7%)
9,570 - 8,997 = 573 - The Non-Responders to the "Sexually Attracted" Question = 6.0% of Sample
GLB Results Estimates: Table Below.
Rossen et al. (2009) Same-Sex
Attracted
Opposite-Sex
Attracted
20% vs.
4.0%
The New Zealand 2007 National Secondary School Youth Health Survey:
Additional Tabled Results.
Lucassen
et al.
(2011)

Same-Sex
Attracted
Only
Opposite-Sex
Attracted
13.9% vs.
4.0%
The New Zealand 2007 National Secondary School Youth Health Survey:
Additional Tabled Results.


Both-Sex
Attracted
Opposite-Sex
Attracted
21.7% vs.
4.0%
Lucassen
et al.
(2014)
Same-/Both-
Sex
Attracted,
Males
Opposite-
Sex
Attracted
Only,
Males
2001: 12.1% vs. 4.1%
OR: 2.9

2007: 14.8%
vs. 2.3%
OR: 7.6

2012: 10.3%
vs. 1.8*
OR: 5.6
The New Zealand 2001,
2007 and 2012
National Secondary School Youth Health Survey:
Additional Tabled Results.


Same-/
Both-Sex
Attracted,
Females
Opposite-
Sex
Attracted Only, Females
2001: 20.8%
vs. 9.7%
OR: 1.9

2007: 18.8%
vs/ 5.9%
OR: 4.0

2012: 16.3%
vs. 5.4%
OR: 3.7
Australian Bureau of Statistics (2007)
Homosexual/
Bisexual
Heterosexual
12.6% vs.
3.1%
[National] Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing, but information said to be from an "additional analysis" by Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (2010).
Additional Tabled Results.
* M = Males - F = Females






"Attempted Suicide" Risks: Special Population Samples
Homosexually vs. Heterosexually Oriented Adults
Study
Sample
Size (N)
GLB
Compa-
rison
Group
Attempted
Suicide
% (n / N)
Sampling Information
Age
Odds Ratio (95% CI)
Fergusson
et al.
(1999)

29 (MF*)
Gay, Lesbian
or Bisexual
Identified
979 (MF)
Heterosexual
Identified
32.1%
(9 / 29)
vs. 7.1%
(69 / 979)
RR: 4.5
Christchurch, New Zealand: Birth Cohort: At Age 21 Years
Attempted Suicide: Age 14 - 21 Years
OR = 6.2 (2.7, 14.3)
Skegg
et al.
(2003)

427 (M)
Reporting Any
Same-Sex
Sexual
Attraction
53 (M)
Reporting
Only Opposite-
Sex Sexual
Attraction
17.0%
(9 / 53)
vs. 6.1%
(26 / 427)
RR: 2.3
Christchurch, New Zealand: Birth Cohort: At Age 26 Years
Attempted Suicide: Lifetime
OR = 3.2 (1.4, 7.2)
(With Control Variables)
119 (F)
Reporting Any
Same-Sex
Sexual
Attraction
343 (F)
Reporting
Only Opposite-
Sex Sexual
Attraction
12.6%
(15 / 119)
vs. 9.3%
(32 / 343)
RR: 1.3
Christchurch, New Zealand: Birth Cohort: At Age 26 Years
Attempted Suicide: Lifetime
OR = 1.4 (0.7, 2.7) ns
(With Control Variables)
Fergusson
et al.
(2005)

Christchurch, New Zealand: Birth Cohort: At Age 26 Years
Attempted Suicide From age 21-25 Years. See Below.
Fergusson
et al.
(2005)
Christchurch, New Zealand: Birth Cohort: At Age 26 Years
Attempted Suicide From age 21-25 Years. See Table Below.
McNair
et al.
(2005)

8.6%,
n = 801
Mainly
Heterosexual to
Lesbian
91.4%,
n = 8,482
Exclusively
Heterosexual
Self-Harm /
Attempted
Suicide
Past 6 Months
11.1 - 17.3%
vs. 2.7%
Australian ALSWH Cohort
Young Women in 2000
ORs: 4.3 to 8.0 (3 Control Variables)
ORs: 3.1 to 5.3 (6 Control variables)
Detailed Results: Table Below.
McNair
et al.
(2005)
2.5%
n = 261
Mainly
Heterosexual to
Lesbian
97.5%
n = 10,035

Exclusively
Heterosexual
Self-Harm /
Attempted
Suicide
Past 6 Months
2.0 - 16.1%
vs. 0.8%
Australian ALSWH Cohort
Mid-Life Women in 2001
ORs: 2.3 to 24.3 (3 Control Variables)
ORs: 21. to 24.6 (6 Control variables)
Detailed Results: Table Below.
* M = Males - F = Females -- ** RR = Risk Ratio, Estimated - "ns" = Not Statistically Significant




Christchurch, New Zealand: Birth Cohort: At Age 26 Years
Attempted Suicide From Age 21 to 25 Years
by Sexual Orientation (Latent Class Determination)
Fergusson et al. (2005)
Heterosexual
Predominantly
Heterosexual
Predominantly
Homosexual
p
Risk Ratio*
Odds Ratio
Males, N = 469
93.7%,  n = 439
4.8%, n = 23
1.5%, n = 7


1.6%, n = 7
0.0%, n = 0
28.6%, n = 2
<0.001
RR-1: 4.5<17.9<71.4
OR-1: 4.1<24.7<149.6
RR-2: 0.9<4.2<19.3
OR-2: 0.9<4.4<22.2
Females, N = 498
81.9%,  n = 408
14.2%, n = 70
3.9%, n = 20


1.6%, n = 7
4.5%, n = 3
10.0%, n = 2
<0.005
RR-1: 1.3<5.8.<26.3
OR-1:1.2<6.4<32.8
RR-2: 1.2<2.4<4.8
OR-2: 1.04<3.4<10.9
*Note: Only the percentages - NOT the counts - are given by study authors. Counts are Estimated from Percentages.
RRs & ORs  are approximate estimates given the estimated counts used in calculations.
RR-1 & OR-1: Attempted Suicide: Predominantly Homosexual vs. Heterosexual
RR-2 & OR-2: Attempted Suicide: Predominantly Homosexual &Predominantly Heterosexual vs. Heterosexual



Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH)
Self-Harm & Attempted Suicide, Past 6 Months
Young & Mid-Life Women: McNair et al. (2005)
Categories
n. (%)
% Self-Harm /
Attempted
Suicide
Odds Ratios 1
(3 Control variables)
Odds Ratios 2
(6 Control variables)
Young Women: 22 - 27 Years of Age in 2000
Heterosexual
8,214 (91.5%)
2.7% (n = 222)
Reference Category
Reference Category
Predominantly
Heterosexual
604 (6.7%)
11.1% (67)
3.1<4.3<5.9 2.2<3.1<4.4
Bisexual
73 (0.81%)
18.7% (13)
4.1<8.0<15.8 2.5<4.8<9.3
Predominantly /
100% Homosexual
90 (1.0%)
17.3% (16)
4.3<8.0<14.7
2.9<5.6<11.0
Percent of Young Women Who Self-Harmed or Attempted Suicide who are not 100% Heterosexual Women (8.5% of Young Women)
30.2%
(96 / 318) 3
All Non-Heterosexual
Women,
No Controls 4
4.0<5.1<6.6
-
Mid-Life Women: 50 - 55 Years of Age in 2001
Heterosexual 9,676 (97.4%)
0.8% (77)
Reference Category Reference Category
Predominantly
Heterosexual
121 (1.2%)
4.0% (5)
1.5<5.0<17.3
1.2<4.6<17.3
Bisexual 15 (0.15%)
16.1% (2)
3.6<24.3<163.9
4.1<24.7<148.6
Predominantly /
100% Homosexual
123 (1.2%)
2.0% (2)
0.42<2.3<13.0 ns
0.38<2.1<11.9 ns
Percent of Mid-Life Women Who Self-Harmed or Attempted Suicide who are not 100% Heterosexual Women (2.6% of Women) 10.5%
(9 / 86) 3
All Non-Heterosexual
Women,
No Controls 4
2.2<4.5<9.0
-

1. 3 Variables: age, region of residence, highest education. - 2. 6 Variables: age, region of residence, highest education, abuse, social support, and stress. - 3. Related N's and Percentage Estimated by Web Page Author: PJT. 4. N's Estimated (An Approximation), and Related ORs Calculated by Web Page Author: PJT.
- "ns" = Not Statistically Significant




The New Zealand Youth 2000 National Secondary School Youth Health Survey
GLB / Non-Heterosexual Results Given & Estimated

Almost "Everything" About Same-Sex Attracted Youth & Suicidality Was NOT reported! Data Used for Estimates: Fleming et al. (2007) & Le Brun et al. (2004)
Sexually Attracted
To? -->
Categories
Opposite
-Sex
Same-
Sex
Both-
Sex
Unsure
Neither
All Non-
Hetero-
sexual
All
n
8,296
68
277
206
150
701
8.997
%
92.2%
0.7%
3.1%
2.3%
1.7%
7.8%
100%
Depression
?
22.9%. n = 156
(683 X 0.229 = 156) 1
22.9%
n = 156
8,997
- 2.6%
= n =
8,763 2
Depression
?
98 / 336: 29.2%
n = 68 + 277 = 345
Non-Responders:
9 = 2.6%



1,071 /
8,763 =
14.0%
Depression
1,071 - 156 =
915
915 / 8,062 =
11.3% 4
98 / (345 - 9 = 336)
= 29.2%
Depressed = 156 - 98 = 58
58 / (356 - 9 = 347)
= 16.7%

1,071 /
8,763 =
14.0%
Attempters, n
% Attempting Suicide,
Past Year
?
15.3% (.153 X 701) = 107

739 /
9,450 =
7.8% 3
Attempters, n
% Attempting Suicide,
Past Year
620
620 /
(9,321 - 701 =
8,620)
7.2%
15.3% (.153 X 701) = 107
Approx. RR: 1.7<2.1<2.6
Approx. OR: 1.9<2.3<2.9
15.3%
727 /
9,321
7.8%
5
(Suicide Attempter Count Distribution) 6
Estimated % Attempting Suicide, Past Year
620 / 8,620
7.2%
(62.8% of 107 = 67) 6
67 / 336 = 19.9%
Approx. RR: 2.2<2.8<3.5
Approx. OR: 2.4<3.2<4.2

(37.2%  of 107 = 40) 6
40 / 356 = 11.5%
Approx. RR: 1.1<1.6<2.1
Approx. OR: 1.2<1.6<2.3


727 /
9,321
7.8%
6
What Might the Results
be for Males????
< 4.7%
Would the OR & RR
be Higher for Males???
Would the OR & RR
be Higher for Males???

4.7%
1. Estimated by Web Page Author (PJT), percentage given. Assuming a 2.6% Non-Responder incidence. Therefore n = 701 - 18 = 683
2. Depression % given separately for males (9.0% for 46.2% of sample = 4,048 X .09 = 364) and females (18.3 % for 53.8% of sample = 4714 X .183 = 863)
3. Number of Male/Female Suicide Attempters given by Fleming et al. (2007): 739, with male (46.2% of sample) incidence being 4.7% and females (53.8% of sample) incidence being 10.5%. Responders to "Attempted Suicide" question = approx. 9,450. Average "attempted suicide incidence for males and females combined = approx. 7.8%. Question Non-Responder: 9,570 - 9,450 = 120
4. Estimated given the other information in the row.  5. Numbers reduced given that only 97.4% of sample responded to "Sexual Attraction" question. 6. Giving a usually strong relationship between depression and attempting suicide, "attempted suicide" counts given the same distribution as "Depression" counts. Same Sex attracted adolescents had 98/156 = 62.8% of the "Depression" counts for all Non-Heterosexual adolescents. ORs and RRs, "Attempting Suicide" in the Category compared to their  Heterosexual Counterpart.



The New Zealand 2007 National Secondary School Youth Health Survey
GLB / Non-Heterosexual Adolescents.
Suicidality Results Below.
Sexually Attracted
To? -->
Categories
Opposite
Sex
Same
Sex
Both
Sex
Unsure
Neither
All
Non-
Hetero
All
All: n, %,
(95% Confidence Interval)
9,098 Males & Females
Non-Responders, Sexual Attraction:
1,096 / 9,098 = 12.05%
7,370
92.10%
(91.4 - 92.9)
343
4.28%
(3.7 - 4.8)
289
3.61
(3.0 - 4.2)

632
7.9%
8,002
100%
All: Attempted Suicide n, %
Non-Responders, Suicide Question:
Approx:
311 / 9,098 = 3.4%
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 413, 4.7%
(4.1 - 5.3)
N ~ = 8,787 *
All: Attempted Suicide, Required Medical Treatment.
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 114, 1.3%, (1.0 - 1.5)
114 / 413 = 26.7% of
Attempters
N ~ = 8.769 *
Male: 4,911, 54.0%
Non-Responders, Sexual Attraction:
666 / 4,911 = 13.56%
3,968
93.47%
(92.7 - 94.4)
165
3.89%
(3.2 - 4.5)
112
2.64%
(2.0 - 3.2)
277
6.52%
4,245, 100%
53% of Sample
Males:
Attempted Suicide: n, %
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 138, 2.9%
(2.4 - 3.5)
N ~ = 4,758 *
Males: Attempted Suicide,
Required Medical Treatment.
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 47, 1.0%, (0.7 - 1.3). 47 / 138
 =
34.1% of Male
Attempters
N ~ = 4,700 *
Māori Males:
Attempted Suicide: n, %
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 4.4%
Pākehā/NZ European Males:
Attempted Suicide: n, %
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 2.4%
Female: 4,187, 46.0%
Non-Responders, Sexual Attraction:
430 / 4,187 = 10.27%
3,402
90.55%
(89.6 - 91.6)
178
4.74%
(4.0 - 5.3)
177
4.71%
3.9 - 5.5
355
9.45%

3,757, 100%
47% of  Sample
Females
Attempted Suicide: n, %
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 275, 6.7%
(5.9 - 7.5)
N ~ = 4.104 *
Females: Attempted Suicide,
Required Medical Treatment.
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 67, 1.6% (1.2 - 2.0). 67 / 275
= 24.36 of Female
Attempters
N ~ = 4,187 *
Māori Females:
Attempted Suicide: n, %
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 9.6%
Pākehā/NZ European Females:
Attempted Suicide: n, %
n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? n, % ? 5.1%
* Estimates From the Number as Related to Percentage Given. E.G. 413 / 0.047 = 8,787.
But correct N could be from about 8,713 (413 / 0.0474) to 8.862 (413 / 0.0466)

Data Sources:
Adolescent Health Research Group (2008) & Clark et al. (2008)




The New Zealand Youth 2007 National Secondary School Youth Health Survey
GLB / Non-Heterosexual Results Given & Estimated
Categories /
Variables
Same-Sex Attracted
% Incidence
Heterosexual
% Incidence

Risk
Ratio 4
Significant depressive symptoms 1
35%
15%
2.3
Seriously thought
about attempting suicide
1
29%
12%
2.4
Plan to kill myself  1 30%
8%
3.8
Attempted Suicide 2 20%
4%
5.0
2001 Study: Attempted Suicide 3 22%
7%
3.1

Data Source: Rossen et al. (2009)
1. Percentages Estimated From Bar Graphs - 2. Percentages Given
3. 2001 Study
Percentages Given & Included for Comparison
4. Estimated From Incidences.






The New Zealand Youth 2007 National Secondary
School Youth Health Survey: Random Survey
Sexual
Attraction / ->
Risks 1

Opposite
Sex
Same
Sex
Both
Sex
Not
Sure
Significant
Depressive
Symptoms:
Males / Females
n = 7212
687 (9.5%)
n = 70
16 (23.3%)
3 OR: 1.9 (1.1–3.1)
n = 261
86 (32.3%)
OR: 3.7 (2.8–4.7)
n = 136
30 (21.8%)
OR: 2.1 (1.3–3.3)
Seriously
Considered
Suicide:
Males 2
n = 3920
329 (8.4%)
n =  45
13 (28.9%)
OR: 4.5 (2.3–8.7)
n = 114)
39 (34.2%)
OR: 5.8 (3.9–8.8)
n = 55
4 (7.4%)
OR: 0.9 (0.3–2.3)
Seriously
Considered
Suicide:
Females 2
n = 3396
636 (18.6%)
n = 27
5 (19.1%)
OR: 1.0 (0.4–2.7)
n = 151
75 (48.3%)
OR: 4.4 (3.2–6.0)
n= 88
25 (28.3%)
OR: 1.6 (0.8–2.9)
Attempted
Suicide:
Males / Females
n = 7313
291 (4.0%)
n = 72
10 (13.9%)
OR: 4.8 (2.4–9.6)
n = 265
59 (21.7%)
OR: 7.0 (5.2–9.4)
n = 142
14 (10.1%)
OR: 2.4 (1.1–5.1)
Deliberately
Self-Harmed
n = 7329
1426 (19.4%)
n = 73
27 (36.9%)
OR: 2.8 (1.8–4.4)
n = 268
156 (57.9%)
OR: 5.8 (4.4–7.6)
n = 142
44 (30.4%)
OR: 1.8 (1.1–2.7)

Data & Results Source: Lucassen et al. (2011)
1. All Risk behaviors are for "the last 12 months".
2. Males and Females calculated separately because of significant differences between the sexes for this risk behavior.
3. All ORs (Odds Ratios) are comparisons of results in a caterory with heterosexual results.




New Zealand Adolescent Surveys: 2001, 2007, 2012 1
Depression & Attempted Suicide Results

Categories
Same-Sex
Attracted
SMY
n (%)
Opposite-Sex
Attracted Only
EOSAY
n (%)
Odds
Ratio,
95% CI
% in
Category
= SMY 3
% SMY in
Survey
Sample
Males
Clinically significant depressive symptoms (RADS-SF ≥ 28) 2
Youth ’12
40 (24.2%)
240 (7.3%)
3.73 *
[3.04–4.58]
40 / [40 + 240]
14.3%
178 / 3535
= 5.03%
Youth ’07
44 (20.6%)
238 (6.1%)
3.55 *
[2.86–4.41]
44 / [44 + 238]
15.6%
220 / 4188
= 5.25%
Youth ’01 2
44 (19.2%)
299 (8.1%)
2.38 *
[1.95–2.91]
44 / [44 + 299]
12.8%
252 / 4043
= 6.23%
Attempted Suicide, Past Year
Youth ’12 18 (10.3%)
62 (1.8%)
5.64
[3.26–9.77]
18 / [18 + 62]
22.5%
178 / 3535
= 5.03%
Youth ’07
32 (14.8%)
90 (2.3%)
7.65
[4.97–11.77]
32 / [32 + 90]
26.2%
220 / 4188
= 5.25%
Youth ’01 2 31 (12.1%)
154 (4.1%)
2.88
[1.75–4.73]
31 / [31 + 154]
16.8%
252 / 4043
= 6.23%
Females
Clinically significant depressive symptoms (RADS-SF ≥ 28) 2
Youth ’12 114 (38.6%)
583 (14.8%)
3.73 *
[3.04–4.58]
114 / [114 + 583]
16.4%
306 / 4284
= 7.14%
Youth ’07
88 (34.0%)
449 (13.4%)
3.55 *
  [2.86–4.41]
88 / [88 + 449]
16.4%
266 / 3668
= 7.25%
Youth ’01 2 81 (28.1%)
623 (14.1%)
2.38 *
[1.95–2.91]
81 / [81 + 623]
11.5%
300 / 4817
= 6.23%
Attempted Suicide, Past Year
Youth ’12 50 (16.3%)
212 (5.4%)
3.71
[2.53–5.44]
50 / [50 + 212]
19.1%
306 / 4284
= 7.14%
Youth ’07
51 (18.9%)
201 (5.9%)
3.97
[2.69–5.84]
51 / [51 + 201]
20.2%
266 / 3668
= 7.25%
Youth ’01 2 63 (20.8%)
434 (9.7%)
1.94
[1.30–2.91]
63 / [63 + 434]
12.7%
300 / 4817
= 6.23%

Data Source: Lucassen et al. (2014)
1. "Cross-sectional, self-administered questionnaires, carried out with representative samples of New Zealand secondary school students. The surveys were conducted in 2001 (Youth ’01), 2007 (Youth ’07) and 2012 (Youth ’12). The anonymous surveys were completed by students at school using multimedia, computer-assisted self-interviewing technology on laptop computers in 2001 and on Internet tablets in 2007 and 2012. Questions appeared in text and were read out loud via a voice-over; students could only hear the voice-over for their own survey on individual headphones." Note: Results for the following variables were not generated: "Seriously Considered Suicide" and "Deliberate Self-Harm.

2. "In 2012 and 2007 only the RADS-SF was used; in 2001, the full version of the RADS (which includes the RADS-SF) was administered. RADS-SF, Reynolds Adolescent Depression Scale, Short Form." See paper for additional information. "Only those who reported having thought about killing themselves were asked this question [attempting suicide] in Youth ’01. RADS-SF, Reynolds Adolescent Depression Scale, Short Form."

3. Calculated by webpage author with what appeqars to be raw counts. Therefore, results are approximations of what they would be if weighted counts had been used.

* Odds Ratios for depression level generated for males and females, combined.



National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing:
Australian Men & Women
Categories
Heterosexual
Homosexual/
Bisexual
Have had suicidal thoughts.
12.9%
34.7%
Have had suicidal plans.
3.7%
17.1%
Have attempted suicide.
3.1%
12.6%

Secondary Data Source:
Data said to be reported - by Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (2010) - in an "additional analysis" associated with the National Survey of Wellbeing report by Australian Bureau of Statistics (2007).



Writing Themselves In” 2010: An Australian Online Survey
Trans-Spectrum & Same Sex Attracted Youth
Self-Harm & Suicidality Results

Study
N's
Control
Group
'Trans'
Suicidality
Description
Jones &
Hillier
(2013)
91 Trans-spectrum
Youth.
1,265
Cisgender
SSAY: Same
Sex Attracted
Youth.

Age Range:
14 to 21
Average:
17 Years

Cisgender
30.12%
Trans-
Spectrum
Lifetime
Self-Harm
46.15%
p < 0.01
Writing Themselves In” 2010: an Australian online survey. 91 trans-spectrum youth: 43 elected
their sex as “Gender Queer,” 21 as “Transgender f-m,” 18 as “Trans-gender m-f,” and 9 as “Other.” The 3,043 cisgender SSAY youth: 1,265 were males (vast majority described themselves as gay/homosexual), 1,766 females with identifications more evenly divided between bisexual and gay/homosexual).
Cisgender
16.10%
Trans-
Spectrum

Lifetime
Attempted
Suicide
27.47%
p < 0.01


Australian Transgender Internet Survey: 2014
Study
N's
Non-
Transgender
Transgender
Suicidality
Description
Boza &
Perry
(2014)
255
Transgender
Adults
None
43.6%
106 / 243
Attempted
Suicide,
Lifetime
Internet Non-Random Sampling; Online Study Advertisements & Snowballing for Australian Transgender Residents.
Sample: 87 Born Female. 168 Born Male. Mean Age: 38.15 years (SD = 13.56, range = 18–73). Participants were predominantly of Oceanic (60.9%) or European (33.3%) ethnicity.


Attempted Suicide & Self-Harm
Australian Trans Men
Sample
Size (N)
TG
Compa-
rison
Group
Attempted
Suicide
% (n / N)
Sampling Information
Risk Ratio,
p
Odd Ratios, Specified
Trans Men
n = 230
Female at
birth.
None
Attempted
Suicide:
79 / 222 =
35.1%
Self-Harm
150 / 222 =
67.6%
Australian trans men aged 16 years and over. Recruited via gender centres, gender clinics, and government and non-government organisations. Survey completed online. Age range = 16 to 64 years. Mean = 30.5 years.
Data Source: de Bolger et al. (2014)

Study Bibliography

Adolescent Health Research Group (2008). Youth’07: The Health and Wellbeing of Secondary School Students in New Zealand. Technical Report. Auckland: The University of Auckland. Download Page.

"Australian Bureau of Statistics (2007). Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing. (additional analysis)." Reference and related data given in: Queensland Association for Healthy Communities (2010). Improving the Lives of LGBT Queenslanders: a call to action. PDF Download. "According to research from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, ‘homosexual/bisexual’ Australians are: ... more likely to have had suicidal thoughts (34.7% v. 12.9%), more likely to have had suicidal plans (17.1% v. 3.7%), more likely to have attempted suicide (12.6% v. 3.1%) ..." According to the document "Funding Proposal Outline - LGBT Mental Health Promotion & Support Service (PDF Download), the source od the homosexual/Bisexual/Heterosexual data was: "Australian Bureau of Statistics. Unpublished data from the 2007 National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing provided to Queensland Association of Healthy Communities in 2010."

Boza C, Perry KN (2014). Gender-Related Victimization, Perceived Social Support, and Predictors of Depression Among Transgender Australians. International Journal of Transgenderism, 15(1): 35-52. Abstract.
 
Clark TC, Robinson E, Crengle S, Herd R, Grant S, Denny S (2008). Te Ara Whakapiki Taitamariki. Youth’07: The Health and Wellbeing Survey of Secondary School Students in New Zealand. Results for Māori Young  People. Auckland: The University of Auckland. Download Page.

de Bolger AdP, Jones T, Dunstan D, Lykins A (2014). Australian Trans Men: Development, Sexuality, and Mental Health. Australian Psychologist, 49(6): 395-402. Abstract.

Fenaughty JI (2000). Life on the seesaw: an assessment of suicide risk and resiliency for bisexual and gay male youth in Aotearoa / New Zealand. Master's Thesis. Department of Psychology, University of Auckland, New Zealand.

Fenaughty J, Harre N (2003). Life on the seesaw: a qualitative study of suicide resiliency factors for young gay men. Journal of Homosexuality, 45(1): 1-22. PubMed Abstract.

Fergusson DM, Horwood LJ, Beautrais AL (1999). Is sexual orientation related to mental health problems and suicidality in young people? Archives of General Psychiatry, 56(10): 876-80. PubMed Abstract. Full Text.

Fergusson DM, Horwood LJ, Ridder EM, Beautrais AL (2005). Sexual orientation and mental health in a birth cohort of young adults. Psychological Medicine, 35(7): 971-981. PubMed Abstract.

Fleming TM, Merry SN, Robinson EM, Denny SJ, Watson PD (2007). Self-reported suicide attempts and associated risk and protective factors among secondary school students in New Zealand. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 41(3): 213-21. Abstract.

Jones T, Hillier L (2013). Comparing Trans-Spectrum and Same-sex-Attracted Youth in Australia: Increased Risks, Increased Activisms. Journal of LGBT Youth, 10(4): 287-307. Abstract.

Kelly B, Raphael B, Judd F, Perdices M, Kernutt G, Burnett P, Dunne M, Burrows G (1998). Suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and HIV infection. Psychosomatics, 39(5), 405-15. PubMed Abstract. Full Text.

Lea T, de Wit J, Reynolds R (2014). Minority Stress in Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Young Adults in Australia: Associations with Psychological Distress, Suicidality, and Substance Use. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Online First. PubMed Abstract.

Lea, Toby (2011). Sexuality, substance use and the scene: An analysis of “post-gay” in same-sex attracted young adults in Sydney, Australia. PhD Dissertation, National Centre in HIV Social Research, the University of New South Wales. Download Page. PDF Download: Whole.  PDF Download: Front End.
 
Le Brun C, Robinson E, Warren H, Watson PD (2004). Non-heterosexual Youth - A Profile of their Health and Wellbeing. Findings of Youth2000. A National Secondary School Youth Health Survey. Auckland: The University of Auckland. Download Page.

Lucassen MF, Clark TC, Denny SJ, Fleming TM, Rossen FV, Sheridan J, Bullen P, Robinson EM (2014). What has changed from 2001 to 2012 for sexual minority youth in New Zealand? Journal of Pediatrics and Child Health, Online First. PubMed Abstract.

Lucassen MF, Merry SN, Robinson EM, Denny S, Clark T, Ameratunga S, Crengle S, Rossen FV (2011). Sexual attraction, depression, self-harm, suicidality and help-seeking behaviour in New Zealand secondary school students. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 45(5): 376-83. PubMed Abstract. Full Text.

Luke JN, Anderson IP, Gee GJ, Thorpe R, Rowley KG, Reilly RE, Thorpe A, Stewart PJ (2013). Suicide Ideation and Attempt in a Community Cohort of Urban Aboriginal Youth: A Cross-Sectional Study. Crisis, 34(4):251-61. PubMed Abstract.

McNair R, Kavanagh A, Agius P, Tong B (2005). The mental health status of young adult and mid-life non-heterosexual Australian women. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 29(3): 265-71. PubMed Abstract. Cohort Studied:  Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health: ALSWH.

Nicholas J, Howard J (2001). Same-Sex Attracted Youth Suicide: Why are we still talking about it? Presented at the Suicide Prevention Australia National Conference, Sydney, April. The PowerPoint presentation was made available to the authors by John Howard. Study results also presented a 2006 Suicide Prevention Day Forum. PDF.

Nicholas J, Howard J (1998). Better dead than gay? Depression, suicide ideation and attempt among a sample of gay and straight-identified males aged 18 to 24.Youth Studies Australia, 17(4): 28-33. Related Dissertation:  Nicholas J (1998). Better to be dead than gay? A study of suicidal behaviour in a sample of gay and straight males aged 18-24. Honors thesis, Macquarie University, Australia.

Rossen FV, Lucassen MFG, Denny S, Robinson E (2009). Youth ‘07 The health and wellbeing of secondary school students in New Zealand: Results for young people attracted to the same sex or both sexes. Auckland: The University of Auckland. Download Page.

Skegg K, Nada-Raja S, Dickson N, Paul C, Williams S (2003). Sexual orientation and self-harm in men and women. American Journal of Psychiatry, 160(3): 541-6. PubMed Abstract. Full Text.

Thorpy et al. (2008). Open Doors Action Research Report 2008: There’s No Place Like Home: An Investigation into the Health and Housing of Queensland’s Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Young People. Full Text .

Welch S, Collings SC, Howden-Chapman P (2000). Lesbians in New Zealand: their mental health and satisfaction with mental health services. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 34(2): 256-63. PubMed Abstract.

Archived Webpage Section: 1998-2003


The Sexuality and Suicide Project - (No more in existence, but then Good News! N/A) (Archive Copy).

A Bit of History: It would seem that the Sexuality and Suicide Project got too bold, as in attempting to implement a necessary anti-homophobia program in a school. This part of their proposed endeavor created an uproar leading to the fact that the program did not receive any funds for 1999 and it now does not have an Internet presence. It appears like like Australia is having the status quo restored: the most at risk gay and bisexual adolescents - the 30% who will be attempting suicide - will continue to be "ignored to death". See the 1999 report: 'Here for Life' Youth Sexuality Project. An overview of some early results by Graham Brown (Manager, Peer Education WA AIDS Council) accessed (PDF Format N/A) (Archive Copy) from Youth Suicide Prevention Bulletin No.3 June 1999 N/A (Archive Copy).  

"Good New" quoted from email by Graham Brown (Jan. 20, 2000):

Due to the State (and some National) policy changes the project was able to achieve, such as same sex attracted youth being listed as a priority group for suicide prevention strategies, we have been included in a State Wide Youth Counsellor Program. What this effectively means is that we have gained ongoing recurrent funding for a full time Peer Education / Youth Counsellor based at the Freedom Centre - the drop in centre and hub of GLBT Youth support programs in Western Australia. This is the first time in the Freedom Centre's history that we have stable financial support for the Centre!

The training programs for professionals (mainly teachers) is still continuing with some excellent results in schools.(Called "Clearing The Way") We have a LONG way to go in Western Australia before we can do comprehensive anti-homophobia programs, but the light feels like it has been turned back on.

Sometimes it certainly can take a while for policy changes to take effect, but this is a big lesson in not giving up! If you could link the Freedom Centre site to your site that would be fantastic! We are slowly improving our capacity with web sites and internet. ("Here for Life Youth Sexuality Report" available for download in PDF format.) By 2003, however, internet access to the report had become non-existent.

Youth suicide strategy evaluated (Sydney Star Observer, Issue 533) by By Sarah Bacon N/A (Archive Link, White font on white background. To see, use "Crtl + a"): "... the only project funded by the Strategy which dealt specifically with gay and lesbian youth suicide issues was the Here For Life Youth Sexuality Project (WA AIDS Council in conjunction with the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service) which  received $250,000. Graham Brown, the health promotion officer on the Here For Life Project, says the project "went really well" considering the number of challenges - such as political battles and homophobic backlash - they had to overcome. (Obtained from a large listing of articles related to GLBT issues in Australia: - Article Index N/A.

Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Hidden in the Crowd: The Need for Documenting Links between Sexuality and Suicidal Behaviours among Young People, 2003 (PDF Download N/A - Archive Link) New Link, Download Page. - Related Items: Don't Ask, Don't Tell N/A: (Archive Link) " Same sex attracted (SSA) young people are not more prone to suicide or self harm than others in their age group simply because of their sexuality. - Gay and Lesbian Suicide (including youth suicide).

Rural suicide and same-sex attracted youth: issues, interventions and implications for rural counsellors... "Establishing an association between rural youth suicide and same-sex attraction: by KT Quinn (PDF Download N/A - New Link)  (HTML Copy N/A - New Link) Rural and Remote Health 3 (online), 2003: no. 222. Abstract: "Recent research into same-sex attracted youth (SSAY) suicide and rural youth suicide suggests there may be an association between the two. A literature review explores this proposal. While contributing issues to rural SSAY suicide, such as homophobia, isolation, availability of information, and acknowledgement of issues are discussed, little hard evidence is found to support the the rural and SSAY suicide connection. Further and on-going research is recommended into this under-represented topic."

Closets of (Y)SAAP (PDF Download N/A Archive Link. New Link, Download Page): "The purpose of this report is to provide a realistic picture of young people with diverse sexuality and gender expression their needs and experiences in relation to accessing the Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (SAAP). Closets of (Y)SAAP highlights the current strengths, gaps and limitations in service provision. This report will be used to promote awareness about and responsibility towards young people with diverse sexuality and gender expression. Furthermore this report is a lobbying tool to promote the need for a specific Youth SAAP (YSAAP) service to address the need of young people with diverse sexuality and gender expression. Furthermore to redefine current practices from an individual YSAAP service level through to a State and Federal government level..."

Australia's Valuing Young Lives: Evaluation of the National Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy is available online N/A. Archive Links: Australia's Valuing Young Lives: Evaluation of the National Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy (2000, As One PDF File)


Getting Real About Preventing Youth Suicide: Youth & Sexuality Issues. The Site was online by December, 1998 N/A. (Archive Copy)

The original site which came online late in 1998 contained the word "suicide" in header pages, but the new site, as evaluated in October, 1999, had deleted the word, and the word "suicide" is not in the subject titles. When an explanation for this was requested, I was told that operating grants would be lost if GLB suicide problems were tackled in an up-front manner - which was apparently why the Sexuality and Suicide Project did not receive funds. I was then told that the associated ReachOut site (referenced below) does have a "suicide" subject section. A visit there for relevant information, however, sent me back to the "GettingReal" site (referenced above)  where no such subject heading exists. If this site represents the best Australia has to offer with respect to "Getting Real" about effectively addressing GLB youth suicide issues, the maintenance of a maximum casualty status in the gay youth population will be maintained. Many 'forces' in Australia may have been collaborating to make this outcome possible. Yet: Forum told young gays more likely to suicide N/A (Aug. '99) (Archive Link).

The ReachOut Suicide Prevention Site is (?) (was?) Working on Increasing the Resources Available on GLBT Issues Relating to Suicide and Other Problems.


The "Make A Noise" (Archive Copy) campaign has been involved with youth suicidality issues but little to nothing is noted about homosexuality issues as related to youth suicidality. At "Make A Noise," the following is noted: "You will notice that much of the content on this site is new, while some of it has been moved off the old Make A Noise youth focused site. This is all part of our facelift after entering into an exciting partnership with Kids Help Line and the Getting Real Association." From the information given at the  Kids Help Line, it does not appear that homosexually oriented adolescents/youth are contacting this service to specifically discuss their suicide-related problems (PDF Download N/A) (Archive Copy), but "sexual orientation" is noted in issues related to bullying (PDF Download N/A) (Archive Copy). See other PDF Information Downloads N/A.

The site "Kids.Net.au" is part of the DMOZ Open Directory site. The site has a "Kids and Teens: Teen Life" section within which  is a subsection on "Suicide" and one on "Teen Sexuality: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual: Gay-Straight Alliances, Resources.



A Thesis Study Results:  A study carried out in collaboration with John Howard (Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia) has been completed (October, 1998). For a comparative group of gay identified and heterosexual identified males (aged 18-24, N = 53 & 53, respectively), the attempted suicide rate for the gay sample is 28.8% compared to 7.8% for the heterosexual sample. The information was obtained via email from Jonathan Nicholas, the author of the study. A Web Link to http://www.reachout.asn.au/ (The youth suicide outreach site above) will soon be available to access additional study-related information. The website is now useless.

A related article: - Better dead than gay? Depression, suicide ideation and attempt among a sample of gay and straight-identified males aged 18 to 24 by Jonathan Nicholas and John Howard, Youth Studies Australia, Vol.17(4), 1998, 28-33. (Must scroll to locate abstract. (Archive Copy) New Abstract Location.

Another Study: Young gay men and suicide: A report of a study exploring the reasons which young men give for suicide ideation by Ron MacDonald and Trudi Cooper, Youth Studies Australia, Vol.17(4), 1998, 23-27. (Must scroll to locate abstract N/A.) (Archive Copy) (Highlights) New Abstract Location.


A 1998 Australian Study: It does what American and Canadian AIDS-related cohort studies of gay and bisexual males had somehow forgot to do, even if the information reported strongly suggested elevated rates for a "suicide attempt" history as noted in the 1997 Colorado paper.

Kelly B, Raphael B, Judd F, Perdices M, Kernutt G, Burnett P, Dunne M, Burrows G (1998). Suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and HIV infection. Psychosomatics, 39(5), 405-15.  (A PubMed "abstract")

Highlights: The lifetime suicide attempt rate for HIV-positive males and HIV-negative males is 21% and 29%, respectively.

Note: In 1998, a Swiss study also reported elevated lifetime "suicide attempt" incidences for a similar sample of gay and bisexual males. See "europe.htm" page.


The Australian National Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy Communications Project's - Homosexuality and Suicide Bibliography Page N/A. - Bullying Bibliography: "Murray, D.  Out with homophobia: addressing homophobia and sex-based discrimination in schools. Youth Studies Australia v.20 no.1 Mar 2001: 32-36, figures. In Queensland schools, as in schools all around Australia, homophobic bullying, discrimination and harassment are unacknowledged discriminatory based behaviours. These behaviours can and do have a major impact on the health and well-being of gay, lesbian and bisexual young people. The 'Out With Homophobia' workshop described here was developed by Family Planning Queensland to assist teachers in meeting the challenge of addressing homophobic bullying and harassment issues in their school environments. (Journal abstract) - Puplick, C.  Blighted lives. Rights Now! (Newsletter of the National Children's and Youth Law Centre) Mar 2001: 10-11. The author refers to findings of recent research which show the prevalence of bullying in schools, and draws on the work of David Plummer at the School of Health, University of New England to identify some of the impacts of homophobic bullying, and key intervention strategies which should be adopted by every school. The elimination of bullying is an obligation related directly to the protection of human rights - the right of personal identity and autonomy above all, concludes the author. Failure to act by school or other authorities cannot and should not be tolerated by any of us.

Australia's 1999 National Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy

"is supporting a number of innovative best practice programmes to trial new models of support for young people who have attempted suicide or who are otherwise assessed to be at ongoing risk." Projects funded include (among a number of listed items):

.....providing specialist supports to gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender young people.

"Reports regarding the outcomes of these projects will be developed and included in the final report of the national youth suicide prevention programmes. Training packages based on the outcomes of some of the projects will be developed and reviewed in the resource guide."


The Youth 1998 Conference (Archive Copy)- (Melbourne University) GLBT Papers Presented.

- Gay and lesbian young people's stories on the management of identity.  Workshop by Mic Emslie, RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology), Victoria. (Abstract N/A) (Archive Copy) - Freedom Victoria Project: How we can promote the development of gay, lesbian and bisexual inclusive rural youth services. by Heather Stewart and Row Allen (Abstract N/A) (Archive Copy): Home Page.


Social Plan: (Archive Copy) - Introduction - Recommendations to the Council - Issues to be advocated by the Council on behalf of GLBT - Common needs/issues raised by GLBT people - Particular Needs of Lesbians, Gay Men, Bisexual People, Transgender people, Young GLBT people, Mature GLBT people, and the Parents, Families and Friends of GLBT people - Issues raised at the First Public Meeting and Second Public Meeting, and through Various Correspondences - Contacts - Bibliography - Method.

Links to Information About Gay & Bisexual Male Suicide Problems in Australia and New Zealand. (For information about similar problems in other countries see: - InfoSource: Gay & Bisexual Male Suicide Problems.) NOTE: Some links below are not available due to Australia's QRD not being online for a period which may be more than temporary. The "Sexuality and Youth Suicide Project" was also scrapped.

Site Index
Subject
                  Index: GLBT Information in 21 Categories.




More
                  Information at: The Original Site on GB Male Suicide
                  Problems