7 research outputs found

    The identities and social roles of people with an intellectual disability: challenging dominant cultural worldviews, values and mythologies

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    Intellectual disability is commonly conceptualised as stigmatised identity with which one has to live. However, within the literature the notion of a damaged identity is contested. The aim of this research was to explore the social construction of intellectual disability, with an emphasis on the identities and social roles of people with an intellectual disability. Informed by a contextualist perspective, this research was conducted within a participatory framework. The co-researchers involved in this research were 18 members of an advocacy agency. Photovoice and conversational interviewing were used to collect data and causal layered analysis was used to deconstruct the data. Analysis of the interactions that emerged across the causal layers revealed a complex dynamic of worldviews which served to construct people with an intellectual disability as incompetent, inherently different and not quite human. For genuine, transformative change to occur, developing an awareness and understanding of social processes, such as dehumanisation, is crucial

    A journey of embedding mental health lived experience in social work education

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    The value of learning from mental health lived experience is widely acknowledged, however, the nature of lived experience involvement in Australian social work education seldom extends beyond guest lecturing. Further, few opportunities exist that build the capacity of people with lived experience to become educators within tertiary settings. In this paper we present the Valuing Lived Experience Project (VLEP), an initiative led by a Lived Experience Academic (LEA) that seeks to systematically and meaningfully embed lived experience into the social work curriculum at a Western Australian university by providing significant opportunities for the capacity building of both individuals with mental health lived experience and academics. Given the relative infancy of service user involvement in Australian social work education, the VLEP offers a number of opportunities for reflection and consideration. A long-standing partnership between a LEA and Social Work Academic is described, the activities and key learnings of the VLEP to date are outlined, and we offer our reflections on challenges encountered throughout the journey. We hope that our experiences and learnings can be drawn upon to progress lived experience participation in tertiary settings and further legitimise lived experience involvement in the education of social workers

    Imposed identities and limited opportunities: Advocacy agency staff perspectives on the construction of their clients with intellectual disabilities

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    Intellectual disability is commonly conceptualised as stigmatised identity; however, within the literature, the notion of a damaged identity is contested. The aim of this research was to explore the social construction of intellectual disability from the perspective of staff who work closely with people with intellectual disabilities. Informed by a contextualist perspective, this research was based on interviews with five staff members of an advocacy agency in a regional area of Australia. Causal layered analysis was used to deconstruct the interview data. Analysis of the interactions that emerged across the causal layers revealed a complex dynamic of world views, which served to dehumanise people with intellectual disabilities and blame them for their own fate (victim blaming). For transformative change to occur, understandings of the 'problems' of intellectual disability must be reformulated and those social structures and processes that support the relationship between the powerful and the powerless must be challenged

    Research and evaluation of the Safer Technology for Women Training and the Safe Connections program

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    What you may not know about antipsychotics: A guide for people taking antipsychotic drugs and their supporters

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    Transitional supported housing for mental health consumers enabling personal recovery: Allowing me to be me

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    © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Objective: Safe, secure, affordable housing is recognised as pivotal to supporting mental health recovery. This article aims to evaluate an innovative West Australian transitional supported housing service for mental health consumers. The service offers 12-months accommodation and individually-tailored, recovery-oriented outreach support followed by six months of less intensive support. Method: Informed by the principles of personal recovery and co-production, the research team, consumers and service staff worked together to create a participatory evaluation process. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with consumers (n =8), family members (n =3), and staff (n =5) which focused on the experience and impact of the service. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. Results: Consumers and family members were satisfied with the service, particularly its person-centred and co-produced approach, and the primacy of relationships characterised by power sharing, authenticity and transparency. Having stable accommodation enabled consumers to make positive changes, including engaging in new therapies, developing independence, and pursuing study and work opportunities. When re-interviewed at least three months after leaving the accommodation, consumers reflected that the service had a significant role in facilitating their recovery and were hopeful about their future. Discussion: Housing stability alongside flexible, tailored, recovery-oriented support were central to satisfaction with the service. Challenges in securing stable, affordable housing post-service highlight the broader issue of housing affordability and supply, and highlight the need for more low cost and social housing to promote mental health recovery. As recovery is a unique, individual process, a variety of flexible supported housing options are needed
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