Decision Maker

Meegan Fitzharris

  • ACT Minister for Health & Wellbeing, Transport & City Services and Higher Education

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Petitioning Chris Bowen, Greg Hunt, Meegan Fitzharris, Steven Miles, Brad Hazard, Steven Wade, Jill Hennessy, Michael Ferguson, Sarah Lovell MLC, Janet Rice, Roger Cook, Scott Morrison, Ms Sharon Claydon MP, D...

“Praying the Gay Away” nearly killed me - outlaw ‘LGBTQA+ Conversion’ therapy now!

Trying to “Pray the Gay Away” nearly killed me. I’m not the only one. An investigation in The Age and Sydney Morning Herald revealed LGBTQA+ conversion therapy has not disappeared in Australia, but has simply gone more underground. According to the article, even children have been subjected to ex-gay therapy.I was only 16 when my own ‘conversion therapy’ began. I came out to a church leader who wanted me to be ‘cured’ and I began sessions with a counsellor aimed at changing my sexuality. At 17 my church introduced me to the leader of an actual program designed to turn me straight. Eventually, I was desperate enough to try it. Every week, members spoke about their ‘sins’ and we learned about the spiritual and experiential reasons that we had ‘turned gay’. I was so ashamed and guilt-ridden that I remained completely celibate for years. So-called ‘conversion therapy’ causes depression, self-loathing and even suicide. I prayed to God asking him to either heal me, or kill me. I was so depressed, I wanted to die. The trauma associated with that part of my life still affects me - how could it not? How is this legal? I don’t want to see a single kid harmed by “therapies” that tell them that something that is innate in them is evil or demonic or needs to be ‘healed’. Please, sign this petition calling for Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the Health Minister Greg Hunt to work with each state to protect the most vulnerable and outlaw LGBTQA+ conversion therapy and it’s advocacy nationwide. It has no place in our medical profession and certainly not in the lives of minors. *UPDATE* This petition focuses on legislation/regulation to prevent ‘gay conversion’ being practised in formal or therapeutic settings (such as in counsellors offices). This is a good start, however to effectively curtail the SOCE/Gay Conversion movement, a much broader response is needed. After signing this petition, please read the recommendations in the survivor statement at www.SOCEsurvivors.com.au

Chris Csabs
62,048 supporters
Closed
Petitioning Andrew Barr, Meegan Fitzharris, Yvette Berry

FUND A SPECIALIST EATING DISORDER IN-PATIENT TREATMENT CENTRE IN CANBERRA.

This petition has been sponsored by Mr Michael Pettersson, Member for Yerrabi, A.C.T. This means that it will be tabled in the ACT Legislative Assembly as early as May! To have your signature counted when the petition is tabled in the ACT legislative you must sign at this link: https://epetitions.act.gov.au/CurrentEPetition.aspx?PetId=81&lIndex=-1 If you have signed the petition on change.org, you will now need to go and re-sign the petition at https://epetitions.act.gov.au/CurrentEPetition.aspx?PetId=81&lIndex=-1 In 2014, I spent 6 months in hosptial in Sydney away from my friends and family to get the life-saving treatment that I needed, and my experience is not uncommon! Currently, the number of people in Australia with an eating disorder at any given time is estimated to be approximately nine percent of the population;[1] of this, 64% are estimated to be female. Approximately 15% of women will experience an eating disorder at some point during their lifetime. As of March 2017, Canberra’s population was 409,100.[2] Using the above statistics, it can be estimated that, at any given time, 36,819 people in Canberra are suffering from an eating disorder. 23,564 of these people are female. 7364 people are likely to die. This shouldn’t be surprising considering eating disorders are the 3rd most common chronic illness, and the second most common cause of mental illness, in young women in Australia. “The mortality rate for people with eating disorders is the highest of all psychiatric illnesses and over 12 times that seen in people without eating disorders.”[3] This is due to both medical complications and increased risk of suicide; Anorexia Nervosa has the highest associated rate of suicide of any mental illness, including depression.[4] Under the current health care system, less than half (46%) of people diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa in Australia fully recover. It should be noted that these statistics do not account for the frequent under-reporting and under-treatment of eating disorders. Despite this, both the public and private health care systems for eating disorders in the ACT are considerably lacking. Currently there are no inpatient services for eating disorder treatment in Canberra,[5] and while there is a public outpatient support program, the wait to be seen by this team was an estimated 8 weeks/2 months (May 2017).  Consequently, many young people, disproportionately young women, around Canberra are not receiving necessary and life-saving health care treatment. The ACT Government expressed a commitment to promoting the recovery of people with a mental disorder or mental illness, in the Mental Health Care Act 2015 (ACT). If they are truly committed to this, it must include ALL people with a mental illness, including the young women of Canberra. As such, we urge the ACT Government to create a specialist eating disorder in-patient treatment centre in Canberra. [1] http://www.nedc.com.au/eating-disorders-in-australia[2] Census[3] http://www.nedc.com.au/eating-disorders-in-australia[4] http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/expanding-medicaresupported-treatment-for-eating-disorder-patients-20170507-gvzz0r.html[5] Current list of inpatient services around Australia: http://www.nedc.com.au/inpatient?tagid=&servicetype=inpatient&population=Adult

Molly Saunders
2,925 supporters
Petitioning Vicki Dunne, Meegan Fitzharris, Yvette Berry, Caroline Le Couteur

We need a Family Birth Centre in the ACT!

The time is right...we are calling for a Family Birth Centre to be built in the ACT! Birth centres offer continuity of maternity care which means childbearing women receive the majority of their care from a known registered midwife. Continuity of care has been shown to be the best model of care provision for women and their babies during labour and birth, regardless of risk. The statistics show that under this model of care there is a decrease in rates of intervention, premature birth, fetal mortality, stillbirth and neonatal admission to a special care nursery. Furthermore, women love it, reporting high levels of satisfaction with their care experience. Canberra women love continuity of care but because our two maternity care hospitals are bursting at the seams many women miss out on the kind of maternity care they want. Currently, an average of 12 women a month miss out on a place at Calvary Birth Centre, and more than 40 women a month go without the continuity care they desire at Centenary Hospital for Women and Children. Due to lack of adequate resources, Queanbeyan Hospital too has been forced to turn away women from the ACT who historically have sought out the hospital's low risk model. Canberra’s population is growing at an ever-increasing rate, and more babies are born each year. The pressure of our growing population will only worsen this shortfall in services. Please join us in our efforts to see a third birth centre built in the ACT so as to service the needs of the women and their families in our community!

Family Birth Centre for the ACT
2,684 supporters
Petitioning Meegan Fitzharris, Andrew Barr

Keep our kids safe! Stop the cutting of Canberra's School Bus Services.

The ACT Government is doing a major overhaul of the bus services in Canberra. From next year, most dedicated school bus services will no longer be running. This will force students as young as 5yrs to catch multiple public buses to and from school, and to have to go through the major bus interchanges to catch connecting buses. If these changes go ahead, many students who currently catch 1 school bus to get home will need to catch 3 public buses and go through an interchange to get home from school. The ACT Governments public consultation was not advertised well enough for the majority of Canberrans to be aware that there was a consultation going on at all. The consultation has now ended with much of the public not even realising these changes were being discussed. I’m sure that if the majority of parents with school children were aware these proposals were being discussed, there would have been many more people having their say on these proposed changes.  I am also very concerned on the validity and accuracy of the data used by the ACT Government to make the decisions to cut the school buses services. Many school bus services that the data said didn’t have many students using that service are actually running at near full capacity in actual reality. Many concerned parents will no longer feel comfortable letting thier young children catch the bus to and from school and will drive them instead. This will increase the traffic around school drop off and collection times which many people already know is a fraught time as it is. We would like to think we live in a safe city where every single person is wonderful and safe to be around. Sadly, this is not reality. We are calling on the ACT Government to reopen the public consultation on proposed school bus changes; Consult thoroughly with all major stakeholders of the school bus services, including school administrators, teachers, parents and students; Keep the safety of our children as a priority; and retain all current school bus services throughout 2019.  

Angel Concerned Parent
1,938 supporters
Closed
Petitioning Malcolm Turnbull, Bill Shorten, Greg Hunt MP, Hon George Brandis, Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC, Hon Cameron Dick, Brad Hazzard, Hon. Jill Hennessy MP, Hon Roger H COOK, Michael Gunner, Honourable Jack ...

Make natural CBD a legal DIETARY supplement, removing it from the drug/poison schedules!

We the undersigned, fully support and agree that CBD derived from an industrial hemp strain of plant, should be lifted from the controlled substance list in all states of Australia and available to purchase and use as a dietary supplement. It is our right, under the constitution to use if we so choose to, an all natural, holistic and alternative supplement. We believe that, given the fact CBD Oil is approved for sale by other therapeutic product administrations in other first world countries around the world, the TGA's stand is almost entirely monetary based.It is driven by the medical profession and pharmaceutical industry's desire to be the only legal prescribers of this natural product. We are completely convinced of the positive benefits of CBD Oil. We believe that given it has no side-effects and so many benefits, that it should be the individuals right to choose what they use when searching alternative holistic products. The individuals choice to natural remedies is paramount when so many legitimate pharmaceuticals have horrendous side-effects and cause so much grief to so many, is quite reasonable in our opinion. What do you think? If you agree, please let us know!

Kimberley Mell
589 supporters
Petitioning Scott Morrison, Daniel Andrews, Meegan Fitzharris, Roger Cook, Steven Miles, Michael Ferguson, James Merlino

Die with dignity! Legalise Euthanasia for all of Australia!

Death is always a difficult subject that nobody likes to think about but sadly it is inevitable for us all. If you've ever lost a loved one from a terminal illness such as Cancer or someone you know is currently suffering from this cruel and debilitating disease, then you'll understand why Euthanasia laws must change in Australia! The state of Victoria has recently passed the law for assisted dying, which comes into effect mid 2019. Euthenasia should be a choice for all Australians with terminal illnesses! A person doesn't deserve to suffer a long, drawn out and painful death. Their families don't deserve to stand by helplessly waiting for their loved one to finally have peace and their suffering come to an end. If death is inevitable due to a terminal illness, then people should be allowed to go gently, peacefully and with dignity. In this country, we treat animals with more compassion to prevent suffering than we do with the terminally ill people! There is nothing more painful and heartbreaking than watching a loved one suffer till their body finally gives up... Please help me and many other Australians who share these beliefs, to allow all states and territories in Australia to finally legalise Euthanasia. Let our voices be heard by signing and sharing this petition! Hopefully, our government will pay attention and we can help make a change for the better.Thank you!

Marina Sezso
308 supporters