Creating Futures 2010: Harnessing creativity and social enterprise for social and emotional wellbeing: Human rights considerations

  • Gooda M
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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental ill health is often overlooked in discussions around Indigenous disadvantage and in relation to some of the headline issues associated, often unfortunately, with Indigenous Australians in the media. Without addressing mental ill-health as an issue in its own right, efforts to improve life in many Indigenous communities, both urban and remote, are likely to come undone. Poor mental health contributes to the crisis of family violence, anti-social behavior, substance misuse, confrontation with the legal system, low participation in schooling and employment that is evident in a significant number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. A key element of the idea of the right to health as the state enabling the opportunity to be healthy, is that the state provides equal opportunities to be healthy to the range of sub-groups within its citizenship; and of course that includes Indigenous Australians—who have a human right to the same opportunities to be healthy as other Australians. This focus on ensuring equality of opportunity is reflected in the way the right to health is understood, largely as set out in General Comment 14 of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. It is crucial to grasp a central tenant of the Declaration , namely the importance of re-setting relationships between Indigenous peoples and the broader community but more particularly governments—in other words, better engagement. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

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  • Mick Gooda

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