The Aboriginal Gender Study

Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia, 2019

Partnering with the University of Adelaide and the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute, the Aboriginal Gender Study aimed to explore, from a strengths-based perspective, the diversity of contemporary perspectives of gender, gender roles and gender equity in South Australian Aboriginal communities.

The project addressed three overall questions comprising:

1. What is the current evidence about gender roles and gender equity in the Australian
literature and Australian policy documents regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait
Islander people?

2. What is the current understanding of gender roles and relationships in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities?

3. What might gender equity/fairness look like for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people, adults, families and communities?

For findings and recommendations, please see report:

 

STIs in remote Australia

ABC Health Report, Monday 18 March 2019 5:45 PM

Leading Aboriginal researcher Associate Professor James Ward* is calling for action in remote Australia to deal with a preventable epidemic of sexually transmissible infections — including syphilis — in a population that’s no more sexually active than non-Indigenous people of the same age.  

He joined Dr Norman Swan’s Health Report on ABC RN.

Later this month James will present to the National Rural Health Conference about addressing sexually transmitted infections in remote Australia.

*James Ward is Associate Professor, Flinders University; & Head of Infectious Diseases Research, Aboriginal Health, South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute. 

 

 

Connecting country: busting myths about Indigenous Australians (podcast)

Diversity Council of Australia, 2 Oct 2018

This 20-minute episode doesn’t just feature a beautiful Welcome to Country, but also attempts to connect Country by exploring the cultural and professional gaps that exist for Indigenous Australians at work and asking: where do these issues come from? Why do they persist? And what can we do to finally close the gap?

Helping answer these questions is Linda Burney – the first Aboriginal woman to serve in the House of Representatives, and the first Aboriginal person to serve in the NSW Parliament – as well as Karen Mundine, CEO at Reconciliation Australia.

Researched and hosted by: Andrew Maxwell. Produced and written by: Andrea Maltman Rivera. Executive produced by: Lisa Annese. Contributions from: Catherine Petterson and Simone Empacher Earl. Special thanks to Audiocraft. Welcome to Country by Aunty Norma Ingram.peer

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander listeners are warned.  The following podcast may contain voices of deceased people.

Media release from SHINE SA: Teen Pregnancy

SHINE SA, Issued: 25 May 2018

Following the release of the Australian Institute of Health and Wellbeing’s Report, that includes the latest figures on teen birth-rates, SHINE SA believes that a decrease in the teen birth-rate as indicated in the report, is a positive outcome from the study.

“A decrease may reflect better sexual health information for young people including education in schools, and better access to sexual health services”, said Dr Amy Moten, Coordinator, Medical Education at SHINE SA.

“Increased access to Long Acting reversible Contraception for young people, as promoted by Family Planning Alliance Australia, is also a significant factor in reducing teen pregnancy rates”, Dr Moten said.

Low socio-economic status can be a marker of poor health outcomes overall. This increases with remoteness from metropolitan areas and Indigenous status. This has been shown in previous studies and also is supported by national data regarding cervical screening that shows that low socio-economic and Indigenous status reduces the rate of screening compared to people from a higher socioeconomic areas.

Social determinants of health are linked to social and economic factors that influence health. Young people from a lower socioeconomic area are likely to have poorer health literacy, lower levels of education and poorer access to health services including contraception. These have all been shown to be linked to an increased birth rate over all ages. Barriers to access health and contraceptive services such as cost and availability of these services increase with distance from metropolitan areas.

“Generally, teen mums often face increased stigma about being a parent and should be supported in their decision to continue parenting”, Dr Moten said.

“At SHINE SA, we provide pregnancy testing, counselling and advice. When a young person is pregnant they can discuss their options and be referred to appropriate services. For a young person continuing to parent we would refer them to the Metropolitan Youth Health Service for example, which has a Young Parenting program”, Dr Moten said.

SHINE SA believes that young mums should be supported to continue their education as completing secondary school after pregnancy has been shown to improve long term outcomes in both mother and child.

Dr Amy Moten, Coordinator Medical Education, SHINE SA
Issued: 25 May 2018

 

Poorer outcomes for babies born to teen mums – often linked to low socioeconomic status

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare,  02 May 2018

Babies of teenage mothers often experience poorer health outcomes than babies born to women just a few years older, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW) first report on this subject.

The report, Teenage mothers in Australia 2015, shows that about 8,200 teenage mothers gave birth to 8,300 babies (3% of all babies) in 2015, down from 11,800 teenage mothers giving birth a decade earlier. Almost three-quarters of teenage mothers were aged 18 or 19.

One in 4 (24%) of all teenage mothers were Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander. Indigenous teenage mothers had higher levels of antenatal risk factors and poorer baby outcomes than non-Indigenous teenage mothers in terms of pre-term birth
and low birthweight.

 

Sexual & Reproductive Health Resource Kit for Aboriginal young people

Aboriginal Health & Medical Research Council of New South Wales, 2018

The AH&MRC has developed a new vibrant Sexual and Reproductive Health Resource Kit for workers to use with Aboriginal young people named “DOIN ‘IT’ RIGHT!”.

DOIN IT RIGHT! provides workers who work with young Aboriginal people (including non-sexual health and non-Aboriginal workers) with step by step instructions on delivering sexual and reproductive health activities appropriately.

Although the statistics are sobering, ongoing education and health promotion will assist young Aboriginal people to make informed choices about their sexual and reproductive health. Given the decreasing age of first sexual experience, high rates of STIs and teen pregnancy, it is important that age and culturally appropriate information and education is provided to young people from an early age.

Contents:

Introduction
Introduction to Sexual and Reproductive Health ……………………………….. 6
Sexual and Reproductive Health in an Aboriginal Context …………………. 7
Aboriginal Cultural Considerations and the Worker’s Role in Sexual
and Reproductive Health Education …………………………………………………. 9
Working with Aboriginal Young People …………………………………………….. 11
Disclosure ……………………………………………………………………………………….. 13
Organisational Philosophy, Policies and Procedures ………………………… 14
How to Generate Conversations ……………………………………………………….. 15
How to use this Kit …………………………………………………………………………… 19
Welcome to Country and Acknowledgment of Country………………………. 21
Group Agreement …………………………………………………………………………….. 23
Opportunity for Anonymous Questions to be Asked Safely………………… 24

1 Looking After Me
Section Introduction ………………………………………………………………………… 27
Changes When Growing Up
Changing Bodies …………………………………………………………………….. 28
Knowing Your Reproductive System and How It All Works ………. 33

2 My Sexuality and How I Feel About Myself

Section Introduction………………………………………………………………………….. 47
Sexuality and me
Sexuality and Sexual Diversity. Step Forward, Step Back ………….. 48
Myths and Stereotypes about Sexuality ……………………………………. 63
Sexuality and Popular Culture ………………………………………………….. 67
Self Esteem
Self Esteem. I Like Me! …………………………………………………………….. 69

3 Sex, Pregnancy and Keeping Safe
Section Introduction …………………………………………………………………………. 76
Sexual Health – What’s Safe and What’s Not
Healthy Vs Unhealthy ………………………………………………………………. 77
High Risk, Low Risk, No Risk …………………………………………………… 87
Sexually Transmissible Infection Information Sheets ………………… 97
Safer Sex STI & Pregnancy Prevention
Contraception and Safer Sex. Methods and Myths ……………………. 113
Using a Condom – DOIN ‘IT’ RIGHT! …………………………………………. 118
Contraception and Safer Sex Information Sheets ……………………… 125

4 Coming to a Decision
Section Introduction …………………………………………………………………………. 142
Sexual and Other Important Decisions
What’s Most Important …………………………………………………………….. 143
Values and Decisions ………………………………………………………………. 152
Decision Tree and Me ………………………………………………………………. 155
I Can Say No!……………………………………………………………………………. 159
What’s Drugs Got To Do With It?
Are You Thinking What I’m Thinking? ………………………………………. 168
Sex, Drugs and Your Choices ………………………………………………….. 175

5 Evaluation
Section Introduction …………………………………………………………………………. 180
What is evaluation …………………………………………………………………… 181
Types of program evaluation …………………………………………………… 182
Planning your evaluation …………………………………………………………. 183
Data collection methods ………………………………………………………….. 185
Documenting activities ……………………………………………………………. 189
Participant feedback ………………………………………………………………… 191
Further evaluation resources …………………………………………………… 192

6 Additional Resources and Information Pages
Section Introduction ………………………………………………………………………… 194
Glossary of Terms ……………………………………………………………………………. 195
Resources and Organisation Contact Details ……………………………………. 202
Broad Sexual and Reproductive Health Information and
Resources……………………………………………………………………………….. 204
Information and Resources for Parents and Carers…………………… 208
Puberty Information and Resources …………………………………………. 209
Contraceptives Information and Resources ……………………………… 211
Pregnancy and Parenting Information and Resources……………….. 213
Sexually Transmissible Infections Information and Resources…… 215
Sexting Information and Resources…………………………………………… 219
Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Information and
Resources……………………………………………………………………………….. 220
Alcohol and Other Drugs Information and Resources ……………….. 221
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer (LGBTIQ)
and Same Sex Couples Information and Resources…………………… 224
Blood Borne Viruses: HIV and Hepatitis Information and
Resources……………………………………………………………………………….. 226
Social Emotional Wellbeing Health Information and Resources…. 229
Legal Information and Resources………………………………………………. 231
References ………………………………………………………………………………………. 233