Regrettably, a significant body of research supports the view that LGBTIQ individuals have a higher per capita level of risk of mental illness, self-harm and suicide. For a variety of factors their life journey can be much more difficult to navigate.
LGBTIQ individuals from multicultural, multi-faith and multi-lingual backgrounds often face additional challenges around coming out, family acceptance and soliciting support from within their own communities.
Often being gender or sexually diverse means putting themselves at odds with cultural norms, being in conflict with doctrinal positions or failing to meet family expectations. The results can include living in denial or a second life; being shunned; mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression; or self-harming as a mean of coping or escaping the psychological pain.
This workshop will examine some of the issues affecting this demographic, provide some suggestions as to how to support them, and suggest some resources that may be of assistance to those working with clients from CALD backgrounds who identify as gender and sexually diverse.
Dr Tony Mordini is an educator, commentator and academic with over 30 years of experience in the education, health and community services sectors. He is particularly passionate about the needs of children and adolescents who are affected by trauma, identify as sexually and gender diverse, come from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and/or are burdened by mental illness.
His broad experiences include the leadership of two schools in the Northern Territory; a Ministerial appointment as a senior policy consultant; and senior university and school leadership roles with portfolio responsibilities for equity, disability services, counselling, policy and learning support.
Tony is currently Assistant Principal at Mount Ridley College. The College on Melbourne’s expanding North Western corridor is one of the largest public schools in Victoria with approximately 2,100 students P-12. He is responsible for the College’s Early Years Mini School (approx. 600 students Prep – 4) and the overall College’s Student Services, Educational Support and Operations portfolios. The College also has a dedicated trauma unit which he supervises.
Tony’s academic scholarship includes research into child and adolescent development (honours thesis); the psychopathology of adolescent self-harm (doctoral thesis); and post-doctoral projects including a study examining 7 years of Indigenous suicide data in the NT.
Tony has been very active in the GLBTIQ and multicultural space for several decades. This has included President of the WA and SA AIDS Councils; Treasurer of the NT AIDS and Hepatitis Council; and more recently as President of the Australian GLBTIQ Multicultural Council Inc. (AGMC), the peak body representing GLBTI individuals from multicultural backgrounds.
Tony is a strong child protection advocate. In recent years this has motivated him to undertake a program of study through the Victorian Department of Justice. In April 2016 he was appointed an Honorary Justice with the powers to execute Interim Accommodation Orders and conduct after hours child bail and remand hearings.