Sunday, November 1, 2009

In OZ ~ Dads on the Air ~ INDIGENOUS MEN'S HEALTH













Dads on the Air | www.dadsontheair.net

Local Sydney Time: 10.30am to 12 midday Tuesday 3rd November 2009
USA Eastern time: 8.30pm to 10pm Monday 2nd November 2009
USA Pacific time: 5.30pm to 7pm Monday 2nd November 2009
UK GMT time: 1.30am to 3am Monday night (Tuesday morning) 3rd November 2009

Listen live on 2GLF 89.3FM in Sydney
or online via live streaming at www.893fm.com.au/On-Air
or in MP3 format at www.dadsontheair.net
or subscribe to our Podcast here

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INDIGENOUS MEN'S HEALTH

With special guests:

  • Ashley Gordon and

  • Craig Hammond.

This week we’re broadcasting to you from the opening of the week long National Men’s Health Gathering in Newcastle, which is about 2 hours north of Sydney. This national event occurs every alternate year and the whole week is dedicated to the health issues facing men today and how we can best deal with those issues.

The state of health of Australian men has been ignored and neglected for many decades by successive governments, while at the same time, the cultural landscape for men, has in recent times come under severe attack from many sources, causing a further deterioration in the well being of the nations' men and boys.

We are dedicating the whole of this weeks' program to the opening day at this year's National Men’s Health Gathering, which starts the week with the 5th National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Male Health Convention.

We also speak with former rugby league star Ashley Gordon, "Aboriginal people and gambling" a dedicated Aboriginal leader and one of the organisers of the convention. Ashley is joined by fellow convention organiser and Aboriginal leader Craig Hammond, "The Brothers Inside Project" who is also committed to improving the physical and mental health of the nations' Indigenous men.

If we want to see what is in store for our men and our culture, we need look no further then the enormous task faced by our Indigenous community to restore the health, dignity and well being of their men and boys. To their great credit and our national shame these communities are working hard to re-engage their once proud Men and have their cultural landscape restored.

The deplorable state of mens' health in Australia, is in no small part due to the fact that it has by and large been ignored by Australian governments and the media. Despite the fact that we are proud to be able to claim that Dads On The Air were the only media organisation to cover this important national week long event, it is an absolute disgrace that the nations' media completely ignored reporting on this event and the dire state of our mens' health.

Around five hundred concerned men and women came to Newcastle from every corner of our nation to discuss the state of men's health in Australia yet our media didn't rate it a mention. Have we reached the stage where our society now only views its men as a dispensable commodity?

While our national media is quick to demonize and portray all men as abusive thugs at every opportunity because of the actions of a few misfits, it completely ignores the plight of the majority of good men, who are responsible, decent human beings, ready to sacrifice their own lives in order to protect the lives of the women and children of this great nation.

This unrelenting assault on the status and dignity of the men in our society has seen a steady deterioration in their general health, both mental and physical. For example, currently all responsible men face the prospect of forcibly having their children and property removed from them, at the whim of a vindictive ex partner aided and abetted by a deplorable family justice system, and find themselves powerless to prevent this happening. This occurs because of community apathy and ignorance and most men’s mistaken belief that it will never happen to them.

As a result we see a fractured society with hundreds of thousands of children living in fatherless homes. Many of these children have no responsible male role models in their lives at all, and while astonishingly this is seen as being in the Best Interest of the Children, the ramifications of these policies are going to have some dreadful outcomes for future generations.

Ashley Gordon is an Indigenous Research Consultant and a trained gambling counsellor who has extensive experience in community education and in program design, development and delivery for Indigenous peoples and communities. He has held Board positions on the Hunter Area Health Aboriginal Health Forum, Hunter Area Consultative Committee, Hunter Council on Problem Gambling, NSW Council on Problem Gambling, Myan Indigenous Employment Network, Hunter Disability Network, Awabakal Aboriginal Lands Council, and the Northern NSW Police Aboriginal Committee.

Formerly a high school teacher, Ashley's more recent career activities have involved working with fellow Indigenous Australians in the areas of life skills training, drug and alcohol counselling, enterprise development, sport and physical education, health and public health, employment, and gambling counselling, community education and needs assessments. Formerly a First Grade Player for the Newcastle Knights football club, he has considerable respect amongst Indigenous peoples and a wide network of contacts. He is currently employed as Manager Counselling and Marketing Programs with LeapFrog Ability in Newcastle NSW. Ashley is currently working on two Indigenous gambling projects with the CGER.

Craig Hammond heads the "Brothers Inside Project" which was first piloted in the Cessnock Corrective Centre with the support of Rio Tinto Aboriginal Foundation and Mercy Foundation. The project works with Indigenous men in gaol to focus on their role as fathers whilst in gaol and upon their release.The Brothers Inside Project has been piloted in Cessnock Corrective Centre with the support of Rio Tinto Aboriginal Foundation and Mercy Foundation. The project works with Indigenous men in gaol to focus on their role as fathers whilst in gaol and upon their release.

For more information about Dads on the Air, click here

In OZ ~ Family Court in the dark over violence, says judge Diana Bryant

The discussion is interesting and confusing just like family court. The feminists and maternalists want it both ways. They raise the issue of abuse, often falsely, in their court affidavits but then advise people like Chisholm they didn't raise it because they didn't think any one would listen. Which is it? Is Bryant or Chisholm starting to see through the smokescreen they put up to maintain ownership and possession of children at the expense of loving dads.MJM






Michael Pelly | November 02, 2009

Article from: The Australian

FAMILY Court judges are not getting enough information to make a proper assessment about the risk of violence in divorce proceedings, judge Diana Bryant says.

However, Chief Justice Bryant says it is a "cop-out" for people to say they do not raise violence issues in the belief nothing will happen - or that it will work against them.

It has been a difficult year for the court, with the death of three-year-old Darcey Freeman in January leading to criticism that it is not attuned to the risk of violent parents.

There has also been criticism of the shared parenting laws, which require the court to presume a child's best interests are served by a continuing relationship with both parents.

The Chief Justice said those who shift blame to the Family Court for their troubles should instead look to the litigants when things go wrong.

"We get the cases where no one is going to be particularly happy," she said. "In children's cases, mostly they have got substance-abuse issues, mental-health issues, family violence - significant family violence or child-abuse issues.

"I don't think that things are caused by decisions. I think people's personalities and motivations drive them in the end."

She said violence cases were the most difficult in family law.

"They are all about risk assessment," she said.

Six inquiries into the shared-parenting laws are under way, with former Family Court judge Richard Chisholm likely to report to the government first.

Chief Justice Bryant said she had had "informal discussions" with Professor Chisholm.

"One of the things he has said to us ... is that many people say 'we don't raise these allegations because we don't think anything will happen'.

"But the judges say they do raise them. They are in every affidavit." She described it as "a circular argument which gets you nowhere". "If you don't raise it, you are never going to find out what the result's going to be and so I don't accept that argument," Chief Justice Bryant said.

"I hear it but I think it's a cop-out. If you don't raise it, then you can't expect an outcome."

http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/business/story/0,28124,26291437-17044,00.html

The work of Fathers 4 Justice and the Pain of Fathers ~ Activism in the UK

Equal and Shared Parenting ~ The Movie