Ahead of the announcement of the postal survey results, ACON – NSW’s leading LGBTI health organisation – has launched a new resource to assist members of the LGBTI community to stay strong, and remind them that support and care is available, whatever the outcome of the public vote.
Produced by ACON’s counselling team, the resource Stronger Together offers practical tips for people on staying strong and resilient in the lead up to, and following, the announcement on 15 November. It builds on ACON’s Staying Strong During the Marriage Equality Debate, a widely-shared resource released in August that reached well over half a million Australians.
Demand for ACON’s client services has increased across the state in recent weeks, especially in the light of the divisive marriage equality debate, and ACON has responded accordingly to ensure people in LGBTI communities get the support they need.
ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill said support is available for LGBTI people who may be feeling overwhelmed and distressed as a result of the marriage equality debate.
“In the lead up to next week’s announcement of the survey results, we are reminding everyone that support and assistance is there for those who have been hurt by this harmful process,” Mr Parkhill said.
“The deeply divisive nature of the debate has left their mark on our communities. A ‘yes’ result will go a long way in healing some of this trauma, but the debate will continue on until the Australian Government enacts reform and ends marriage discrimination. Until that time, it’s imperative we continue to provide support to those who need it.
“In the unlikely event that things do not go our way, we will all feel despair, anger, resentment, grief and loss. During this time, it’s important to be with those you love, talk about how you feel and remember that we will come through this.
“This debate has only made our communities stronger and more determined. We will continue to face the bigotry and hatred that comes our way, as we not only have each other, but we have friends and allies on our side. Remember, our communities are resilient and we are stronger together.”
Download PDF and JPG versions of the Stronger Together resource, as well as a text-only version, here.
ACON will have additional counselling staff in the lead up to and the days following the announcement of the postal survey results to assist community members needing support. Contact ACON on (02) 9206 2000 or visit acon.org.au for more information about our support services.
Support is also available from mental health organisations such as QLife (qlife.org.au), Beyond Blue, SANE Australia, Twenty10, headspace, Relationships Australia, Lifeline and the Blackdog Institute.
Media enquiries: David Alexander, ACON Media and Communications
E: firstname.lastname@example.org T: +61 (02) 9206 2044 M: +61 (0)428 477 042