Daily News - Thursday 14 August 2014

Posted 14 August 2014 8:53am

The difference between working dads and working mums
Andie Fox, Daily Life

The 2014 Westpac Women of Influence Report has found that almost seven out of ten mothers think responsibility for ensuring childcare options rests with government, whereas only half the fathers surveyed do. Fathers are more likely than mothers to think parents should be responsible for solving this problem. In other words, the majority of mothers surveyed believe in the case for socialised child care provision whereas fathers are not convinced.

Fathers are much more likely to see it as a private problem requiring a private solution, even though they have firsthand experience of child care problems. Or do they? Does the child care dilemma affect them personally? We’ll get to more of the fathers’ experience in the workplace in a moment.


US - Counselors Say Men Are More Willing to Try Couples Therapy When It Focuses on Results
Elizabeth Bernstein, The Wall Street Journal

There's a complaint I hear all the time from readers: "My marriage is on the rocks, but my husband refuses to try couples therapy."

There are variations on the theme. Sometimes, the marriage is over, and the wife thinks if the couple had gone to therapy it might have been saved. Once in a while a man writes to say he regrets refusing to try it until it was too late.

Some marriage therapists are starting to create a more male-friendly type of couples counseling to address this common situation. The gist is less talk, more practical solutions.


Divorce is not a dirty word and governments should stick to governing
Karen Brooks, The Courier Mail

Whether it has been designed to save taxpayers the $1100 a year currently being shelled out to help families in crisis, or as a pathetic nanny state plan pandering to the religious right and wasting money that could be better spent elsewhere, what has happened as a consequence is that divorce has once again become stigmatised.


When the penny doesn’t drop
Kayleigh Bruce, Whyalla News

Community members concerned about problem gambling are being told to not be afraid to seek help.

A Centacare Country SA Whyalla spokesperson said while pokie machines or other forms of gambling could be harmless fun for some people, others may have trouble knowing when to stop.


Income management uptake slows in Ceduna
West Coast Sentinel

There have been mixed results one month since the federal government launched the Centrelink Ceduna Income Management Scheme on July 1 to combat alcohol and violence related issues in the area.

The people of Ceduna and surrounding communities have had the option to sign up voluntarily for the scheme, however the number of residents who have taken the initiative and signed up is minimal. Federal MP Rowan Ramsey said it was taking a bit of time for residents to sign up for the scheme and see the positive purpose of it, therefore a new assessment program for the initiative would be put in place.

... The response of local support agencies to the Ceduna Income Management Scheme has been positive. Ceduna Centacare is one agency that has extended its services to accommodate the new scheme.

Centacare chief executive Dr Peter Munn said there were systems in place to provide consistent support for people in the community on voluntary and involuntary schemes.


No easy fix to domestic violence
Amy Remeikis, Brisbane Times

There is no easy fix to Queensland’s domestic violence issue, experts say, warning any solution will need money, support and perseverance.

The government has appointed former Governor-General Quentin Bryce to lead a domestic violence taskforce to investigate why the prevalence of domestic violence in Queensland is on the rise.

Last year, the number of reported incidents grew to 64,000 across the state, from 58,000 reports the year before. That works out to about 175 reports a day.


Victoria - Mental health job cuts in state government restructure
Henrietta Cook, The Age

Hundreds of Victorian community mental health workers have lost their jobs following a Napthine government restructure which some critics fear could lead to an increase in homelessness.

An analysis by the sector's peak body, VICSERV, shows that 380 workers have lost their jobs due to the changes.


Spike in FIFO suicides not surprising: WA Mental Health Commissioner Tim Marney
Louise Merrillees, ABC

An increase in suicides by fly in, fly out (FIFO) workers in Western Australia is "not surprising", the Mental Health Commissioner has said.

Tim Marney said there were nine cases of apparent suicides by FIFO workers in the past 12 months and he would appoint a senior clinician to examine the circumstances surrounding the deaths.


Robin Williams: Depression Alone Rarely Causes Suicide
Roni Jacobson, Scientific American

In his stand-up and best-loved comedies, including Aladdin and Mrs. Doubtfire, Robin Williams was known for his rapid-fire impersonations and intensely playful energy. His most critically acclaimed work, however, including his Oscar-winning turn in Good Will Hunting, married humor with sharp introspection and appreciation for melancholy.

Reports of his death from apparent suicide on August 11 at the age of 63 have prompted much speculation about the actor’s personality and mental health. Williams had been seeking treatment for severe depression, and many commenters have labeled that as the reason for his death. Whereas the majority of people who commit suicide suffer from depression, less than 4 percent of those eventually take their lives.


Experts call for rethink of suicide risk assessment
Anna Vidot, PM, ABC

Internationally respected mental health researcher, Professor Nav Kapur, says the science is in. Around the world, the tools and checklists clinicians commonly use to assess the risk of someone taking their own life are hopelessly flawed.


Talking therapies can harm too – here’s what to look out for
Gordon Parker, The Conversation

People seeking therapy should always talk to a practitioner who provides good quality treatment that’s appropriate to their needs. Because research shows that even the innocuous-sounding “talking therapies” (essentially counselling and psychotherapy) can be harmful for some when they’re unsuitable.


Blacktown police undergoing training to handle almost 800 mental health incidents a year
Jessica Oxford, Blacktown Advocate

Blacktown police are ramping up training to be better equipped to deal with the high rates of mental health issues they’re confronted with daily.

Mental Health Officer Inspector Bob Fitzgerald said Blacktown police responded to between 750 and 800 mental health incidents a year.

“I want that (figure) to go down big time,” Insp Fitzgerald said. “It’s not a crime to have a mental illness but unfortunately there are some times when it does become­ a crime problem.’’


'Poorest people don't have cars': Coalition backbenchers take Joe Hockey to task over fuel excise comments
Louise Yaxley, AM, ABC

Coalition backbenchers have taken Treasurer Joe Hockey to task after he claimed poorer Australians would not be hit by increases to the fuel tax because they do not drive cars.

Mr Hockey wants to end the 13-year freeze on the indexation of the fuel excise, saying it would raise more than $2 billion over four years which would be spent on roads.


Joe Hockey gets outnumbered in the battle of the stats
Michelle Grattan, The Conversation

Greg Jericho, who writes for Guardian Australia, tweeted a graph showing the percentage of annual household expenditure spent on petrol: it was higher for the poor than for the top income bracket. Also, and significantly, the second lowest income quintile (that is, relatively modest earners) had the highest percentage.

In its submission to the Senate inquiry on the legislation the Australian Automobile Association said: “Research indicates that the people who use their cars most frequently are in the outer metropolitan areas and rural and regional areas where there are lower incomes, less jobs, and little or no access to public transport.


Australians left poorer by sluggish wage growth, rising prices
Pat McGrath, PM, ABC

Official figure show consumer prices are rising at a rate of 3 per cent a year, the fastest pace in two and half years.

But at the same time, the growth rate of hourly wages has been stuck at 2.6 per cent for the past three quarters.

And so RBC Capital markets economist Su-Lin Ong says that means Australians have effectively copped a pay cut over the past nine months.


Very low wage rises send many workers backward
Peter Martin, Sydney Morning Herald

Selling the budget in Brisbane ahead of the release of the wage figures Treasurer Joe Hockey attempted to turn low wage growth to his advantage, saying a budget proposal to lift pensions in line with the consumer price index rather than wages would actually advantage pensioners in the present environment.


Eric Abetz flags doubling subsidy to hire long-term jobless
Natasha Bita, The Australian

The Abbott government is considering doubling the wage subsidies it pays to employers to recruit the long-term jobless.

In its first six months, only 76 employers have accessed the subsidy scheme on trial in Tasmania, well below the target of 2000 jobs in two years. The federal Employment ­Department is investigating whether doubling the subsidy to $6500 would ­entice more employers to hire someone who has been out of work for at least six months.

The more generous Restart scheme — which pays employers $10,000 to hire an over-50 worker for at least two years — has been more popular among employers, who have employed 53 older workers since July 1.


Pensioners still "lose out" on safety net

Pensioners and other concession card holders may not benefit from a capped number of GP co-payments spruiked by the federal government on its proposed budget measure.

The government has argued it would cap the number of $7 co-payments for concession card holders and children to 10.

But figures from The Department of Health reveal the average number of visits for GP, imaging and pathology services by concession card holders was eight, falling short of the safety net, The Australian reports.


Meals On Wheels Milestone
Pro Bono News

One of the largest community-based volunteer organisations Meals on Wheels is celebrating 60 years of operation and the place where the program began in South Australia.

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