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Issue 03 | August 2013| www.mhima.org.au

From the Executive Officer

I am pleased to inform you that we now have consumers and carers engaged across various aspects of work in MHiMA; in the development of the new Framework for Mental Health in Multicultural Australia and in the soon to be released joint position statement with beyondblue about engaging CALD communities in relation to their experiences of depression and anxiety.

Going forward we will be focusing more attention on ways to reduce discrimination and stigma. We look forward to engaging consumers and carers right at forefront of developments in this area.

Yours in positive health and well-being.

Hamza Vayani
Executive Officer, MHiMA

MHiMA project updates

Seeking more consumer and carer representatives from some states and territories

Four vacancies exist across the MHiMA Consumer Working Group and MHiMA Carer Working Group. We are seeking consumer representatives from Tasmania and the Northern Territory; and carer representatives from Western Australia and the Australian Capital Territory. Read more...

New framework nearing completion and will be released soon

MHiMA is excited that the Framework for Mental Health in Multicultural Australia Framework: Towards Culturally Inclusive Service Delivery is nearing completion. We would like to acknowledge everyone who has assisted us with this task since work began in April 2012. You’ve helped by completing surveys, participating in consultations and providing detailed feedback and advice. We would especially like to thank the organisations that participated in the pilot study, the MHiMA State and Territory Reference Group, the MHiMA Consumer Working Group and MHiMA and the Carer Working Group for their guidance and contributions. Read more...

Research agenda: progress update

The first round of the expert consensus study to develop a mental health and suicide research agenda for people from migrant and refugee backgrounds closed on the 31 July 2013. We received a total of 155 responses from a range of sectors. The majority came from individuals working in mental health and suicide services in Australia, followed by people working primarily in government organisations. The second (final) round survey will be distributed to the respondents in September. We sincerely thank all the respondents for their interest and for the important contribution they are making to this project. Read more...

Sector news

-Consumer medication brochures are now available from the Transcultural Mental Health Centre (TMHC) in community languages. They contain detailed information about specific types of medications to treat mental health disorders and illnesses, how they work, side effects, how they should be used and where to seek help if needed. For more information visit TMHC’s website here.

-Changes to Community Detention. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship has announced new vulnerability criteria in the Community Detention program to prioritise accommodation for those requiring the highest level of care. This includes unaccompanied minors as well as severely vulnerable families and adults, such as people with diagnosed illnesses or disabilities, and families with complex needs that may be at risk. For more information email DIAC at communityplacements@immi.gov.au.

-The Continence Foundation of Australia has recently launched national program Incontinence Outreach in CALD Communities. There are a number of initiatives, some of which will be of interest to health professionals and carers of people from CALD communities suffering mental illness. Read more…

-Multicultural Gamblers Help aims to link clients with mental illness and gambling problems to appropriate services in a timely manner. Organisations are invited to undertake the training as part of their professional development. Find out more about training and resources for health and community practitioners and community members here.

-The Multicultural Mental Health Consumer and Carer Network, based at Queensland Transcultural Mental Health Centre, is looking for individuals who are: current or past consumers of mental health services from a culturally and linguistically diverse background or carers of mental health consumers from a culturally and linguistically diverse background. Email QTMHC@health.qld.gov.au for more information.

-The National CALD Ageing Network (NCAN) is a web-based communication network, developed by the Federation of Ethnic Communities' Councils of Australia (FECCA), that has been designed for all stakeholders who are involved in the CALD ageing sector. It is free to join and FECCA encourages all stakeholders in the CALD ageing sector, as well as interested organisations and individuals, to become part of this growing network. You can register on the FECCA website.

-Racism. It Stops With Me, a national campaign, established by the Australian Human Rights Commission and in partnership with government and non-government agencies, will run until 2015. The National Anti-Racism Strategy has also been translated into 26 different languages. For more information, visit the website.

-Appointment of new national Race Discrimination Commissioner. Dr Tim Soutphommasane, a media commentator and academic specialising in multiculturalism and citizenship has recently been appointed to the role for five years, visit the website here.

Up and coming conferences

-November 2013 FECCA 2013 Conference: Breaking Down the Barriers

-November 2013 4th WA Transcultural Mental Health and 2nd Australasian Refugee Health Conference

Go to MHiMA's calendar for information about other events.

Knowledge Exchange

Browse MHiMA's knowledge exchange collection to find reports, practice guidelines and more.

Featured items

-Cultural Formulation Interviews (DSM-5).

-Multicultural access and equity…

-Immigrant and refugee communities and system reform.

-Talking from the Heart.

-Faith gave my family comfort over my depression...

Other new items

-A mental health research agenda for people of refugee background in Australia...

-Easidose medication instruction aid

-Invisible injuries, invisible people: Human rights, mental health and CALD communities

-Guide to asylum seeker access to health and community services in Victoria

-Promoting the engagement of interpreters in Victorian health services, June 2013

-The resettlement of refugees in Australia: a bibliography (5th rev. ed.)

-Women surviving violence: Cultural competence in critical services

-Working with interpreters: A practice guide for psychologists

What’s new in the literature?

We regularly read and review items been published in Australian and international journals. We've just added a selected list of items published in July 2013. For more, please see here.