The mental health of young Australians is in the spotlight again with a recent newspaper poll showing one in four young people aged sixteen to twenty-four thought about suicide over the past two years and 15 per cent attempted self-harm. The Age poll reveals a staggering eighty-two per cent said the pandemic caused their mental health issues.
Our new podcast series with Professor Daryl Higgins, director of Australian Catholic University’s Institute of Child Protection Studies is therefore timely. In this first Figuring out Families podcast with Prof Higgins, he says parents need quicker and more improved access to evidence-based support programs to address these rising mental health problems. And he believes primary and secondary schools are well equipped to help deliver the programs that will best meet the needs of young Australians.
Professor Daryl Higgins is Director of the Institute of Child Protection Studies. His research focuses on public health approaches to protecting children and child-safe organisational strategies. He is a registered psychologist. For almost 30 years, Prof Higgins has researched a wide sphere of child health including: welfare and protection, family law, family violence and family wellbeing. He has published over 250 articles, papers and reports that have made a significant impact on policy related to child maltreatment, both in Australia and internationally.
Before joining ACU, Prof Higgins was the Deputy Director (Research) at the Australian Institute of Family Studies, where he had responsibility for the research program, knowledge translation and exchange functions focusing on issues affecting families in Australia.
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