Same-sex-attracted young people are 5 times more likely to suffer from depression, and up to 6 times more likely to attempt suicide. But former Victorian Premier and current Chair of the national mental health initiative beyondblue Jeff Kennett, has consistently made statements contributing to a culture of homophobia and discrimination.
Just last month Kennett claimed that children in a homosexual family would have worse mental health outcomes. Kennett has also previously compared a bisexual football trainer to a paedophile.
Jeff is entitled to his own opinions, but not to his own facts - and the facts speak for themselves. Beyondblue’s own research has concluded “all the research shows that it’s the quality of parenting that matters, not the gender of the parents” and other research consistently points to exclusion and discrimination as the main causes of depression and suicide amongst young gays and lesbians.
Kennett has been a champion of mental health for over a decade - but has comprehensively failed to show leadership on this issue. Together we can take this opportunity to force him to step up and help build a culture of inclusion and support. Sign the petition, and ask Jeff to:
- Show the same leadership in this area of mental health as he has in other areas
- Film an “It Gets Better” Video to gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer-identifying young people, sending a message of respect, support and inclusion.
- Meet with GLBTIQ young people to talk about how Jeff and beyondblue can play a bigger role in building a culture of inclusion and support.
- Make a public statement calling for further action to support LGBT young people across Australia.