Flat White

There’s no place for gender politics in mental health care, Julia

22 March 2017

4:04 PM

22 March 2017

4:04 PM

In a move that has left many jaws on the floor, and steam blasting out of ears, former prime minister Julia Gillard has been named the new chair of Beyond Blue, the mental health organisation.

Gillard will replace former Victorian premier Jeff Kennett who formed the organisation in 2000.

Announcing the appointment he said, “The board were looking for a person who had a natural attachment and interest in matters to do with mental health, who had a very clear position of strength in trying to argue and advocate against discrimination in all its shapes and forms. We wanted a person who we knew was clearly articulate… We also wanted someone who could open doors, be they political or commercial.

“The great strength of Beyond Blue over the last 17 years is the fact that it’s been bipartisan. It belongs to no-one or no political party it exists only to serve a broader community.”

The problem is, doors have already slammed shut. How could they not foresee that?

There is no place for gender politics in mental health care – and Gillard is the queen of gender politics. That notorious “misogyny speech” fuelled unjust policy and continues to ruin lives.

Are we seriously concerned about the continuing heartbreaking rise in male suicide or not?

Are we going to acknowledge that depression and addiction don’t gender discriminate?

Why don’t policy makers see that gender bias and hideous anti-men messaging is the cause of many mental health issues? Or are we all conveniently in denial about societal factors contributing to people’s mental wellbeing?

Gillard describes “loneliness” as being the sole woman at boardroom meetings. Her words prove she has absolutely no clue. If you still see the world in terms of gender, you’re a million miles from rock bottom. Come back to us when you haven’t got the energy to wave the gender card.

Feminism is for middle class women. Gender politics is for elites who can’t see the wood for the trees when it comes to separating complex branches that twist into the destruction of depression.

Following the announcement Gillard said she had a “lifetime passion” for mental health issues having grown up with her father who worked as a psychiatric nurse.

“Now we are prepared to talk about our own mental health, we are prepared to talk about anxiety and depression and suicide in our community, we are prepared to face up to the fact that people that need assistance don’t get the help they require when they most need it,” she said.

Like fathers having access to their children, is that what you’re talking about Ms Gillard?

Like vile anti-male messaging? Is that “the help they require when they need it most”, Ms Gillard?

“We stop violence at the source. And the source is men.” These are the damaging brainwashing droplets dripping from the tap tied with White Ribbons into an overflowing bath of despair.

After the Beyond Blue announcement, one distraught person wrote on Facebook, “That is just heartbreaking. When as a society will we wake up?”

Another, “Well, I’m out…”

Another, “This woman is one of the reasons I am so lonely and suffer from depression. You have made a very bad choice here. I will not be supporting Beyond Blue…”

Yet another, “To say I am concerned by this appointment is a gross understatement. I will no longer support your organisation due to the bullying tactics we saw at the secretly recorded women’s only conference. Her behaviour was the exact kind of behaviour that leads to mental health concerns and as such I do not want any part of this.”

Most of us see it.

Who are these fools that live with their eyes closed?

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