ONLINE SYMPOSIUM | 19-22 APRIL 2021
Symposium 2021 Program

The program is subject to change and will be updated as more information is available.

The below times are listed in AEST.

Recordings and presentations approved by speakers will be available to re-watch for 60 days.

DOWNLOAD PRINTABLE PROGRAM HERE

Monday 19 April 2021
Time (AEST)Event
11am - 12pmPre-Symposium entry and exhibition booths open
11:45am - 5pmDelegate wellbeing, group conversation and support
Moderated by Standby Support after Suicide
12pm - 1.30pmOpening session

Symposium MC: Jenny Brockie
Acknowledgement of Country: Professor Pat Dudgeon
Acknowledgement of Lived Experience: Mark Davis
Welcome & opening address: Ms Angela Emslie, Suicide Prevention Australia Chair
Address: Hon David Coleman MP, Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention
Principal Sponsor Address: John Brogden AM, Lifeline National Board Chair
National Keynote Speaker: Ms Christine Morgan
1.30pm - 2pmKEYNOTE SPEAKER
Sponsored by Black Dog Institute
Ms Carla Na Nagara, Director - Suicide Prevention Office, Ministry of Health New Zealand
From a Standing Start: Reflections and Lessons – establishing a national Suicide Prevention Office from scratch
2pm - 2.15pmAfternoon break
Visit exhibition booths & poster displays
2.15pm - 3.15pmConcurrent streams
STREAM 1:
Lived Experience
Stream Partner: Wellbeing SA

Stream Chair: Brendan Kelley, Associate Director, Suicide Prevention & Capacity Building, Mental Health and Wellbeing, Wellbeing SA
STREAM 2:
Indigenous
Stream Partner: LivingWorks Australia: sharing the new co-designed and led, Indigenous-ASIST two-day suicide first aid intervention skills training

Stream Chair: Vanessa Lee-Ah Mat
STREAM 3:
Programs & Services
Stream Partner: Mental Health First Aid Australia

Stream Chair: Claire Kelly, Director of Curriculum and Research, Mental Health First Aid Australia
STREAM 4:
Research
Stream Partner: LGBTIQ+ Health Australia

Stream Chair: Nicky Bath, Chief Executive Officer, LGBTIQ+ Health Australia
Lived Experience Keynote
Mark Davis
Indigenous Keynote
Professor Pat Dudgeon, Director - Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP)
Carmen Betterridge - Suicide Risk Assessment Australia
Professional and clinical supervision for the suicide prevention workforce
Dr Adam Hill – Archs La Trobe University
Suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among LGBTQ adults in Australia
Rob O’Leary - Batyr
What Young People are Saying Makes a Difference In Addressing Mental Ill-Health and Recovery Journeys: A Thematic Analysis on the Lived-Experiences of Young People
Wayne Williams, LivingWorks Indigenous Trainer - LivingWorks Australia
LivingWorks Australia: Training to build an Indigenous Network of Safety through suicide first-aid intervention training for Indigenous communities and those that work with those communities.
Dr Cathy Kezelman AM – Blue Knot Foundation
Taking a trauma-informed approach to suicide prevention
Dr Kathy Bond – Mental Health first Aid
The Mental Health First Aid Australia course, Conversations About Suicide: An Uncontrolled Trial
Pinar Thorn – The University of Melbourne
How and why do young people use social media to communicate about self-harm? A qualitative study
Sam Carter – The PHN
Simulation Modelling to inform Suicide Prevention commissioning
Sharon Bower and Ingrid Ozols AM – Suicide Prevention Australia
A Suicide Prevention Competency Standards Framework for the non-clinical workforce
Dr Amy Morgan – University of Melbourne
Effectiveness of the Wesley LifeForce Networks program in preventing suicide
Bronwen Edwards – Roses in The Ocean
’Lifekeeper’ training through the lens of lived experience: Creating sustainability in communities through the establishment of local ’Community TouchPoints’ Trainers.
Dr Emily Hielscher – QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute
Interoceptive abnormalities and suicidality: A systematic review National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
Time (AEST)Event
3:15pm-3:30pmAfternoon break
3:30pm-4:00pmPanel Discussion: Stigma, mental ill-health and suicide
Carla Na Nagara, Director - Suicide Prevention Office, Ministry of Health New Zealand
Mark Davis, Lived Experience Representative
Professor Pat Dudgeon, Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP)
Sharon Bower, Suicide Prevention Australia
Kathy Bond, Mental Health Firstaid
Chair: Fiona Shand, Associate Professor, Black Dog Institute
4:00pm-4:30pmClosing remarks
Jenny Brockie
Tuesday 20 April 2021
Time (AEST)Event
12pm - 1:30pmPre-Symposium entry and exhibition booths open

12pm - 1:15pmPhD and Early career grant recipient workshop (invitation only)

12:45pm - 5pmDelegate wellbeing, group conversation and support
Moderated by Standby Support after Suicide
1:00pm - 1:20pmActivity: Guided meditation
Join your fellow Symposium delegates for a relaxing and refreshing meditation session to start the day. Emma Wallace will guide you through a breathing technique that you can use both during and after the Symposium, followed by a short meditation session that will allow you to relax and clear your mind.
1:30pm - 1:35pmOpening session
Symposium MC: Jenny Brockie
1:35pm - 1:55pm3-Minute Thesis Style Presentations

1. Christopher Rainbow, Beyond Blue: Suicide risk in online help-seekers
2. Dr Jin Han, Black Dog Institute: The Lifebuoy app: the development of a smartphone app for managing suicidal thoughts in young people National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
3. Luke Bayliss, University of Southern Queensland: Moving beyond the fear of death: Suicide capacity within the ideation-to-action framework
4. Laura Grattidge (nee Smith): What works for rural youth suicide prevention?
1:55pm - 3pmConcurrent streams
STREAM 1:
Lived Experience
Stream Partner: Wellbeing SA

Stream Chair: Emma Willoughby, Principal Project Officer, Suicide Prevention & Capacity Building, Wellbeing SA
STREAM 2:
Indigenous
Stream Partner: LivingWorks Australia: sharing the new co-designed and led, Indigenous-ASIST two-day suicide first aid intervention skills training
STREAM 3:
Programs & Services


Stream Partner: Mental Health First Aid AustraliaStream Chair: Kathy Bond, Workplace Engagement Manager, Mental Health First Aid Australia
STREAM 4:
Research
Stream Partner: : LGBTIQ+ Health Australia

James Zanotto, Policy and Research Manager, LGBTIQ+ Health Australia
Carrie Lumby – Roses in the Ocean
Putting co-design into the co-design: Creating a customized, lived experience informed process for co-designing non-clinical services with and for people with lived experience of suicide
Tom Brideson – Gayaa Dhuwi
Towards Zero Suicides - We’ve had this before’
Dr Tara Hunt – Lifeline Australia
Eclipse Online: Reflections on pivoting support for those who have attempted suicide
Professor Jane Pirkis and Dr Jin Han - Centre For Mental Health, The University Of Melbourne
Mentoring Future Research Leaders
Dr Karolina Krysinska – University of Melbourne and Ingrid Ozols AM - Lived Experience Representative
The Voice of people with Lived Experience of suicide (VocLE) Study: Learning from lived experience, fostering appreciation, partnership and growth in suicide research in Australia
National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
Dr Vanessa Lee-Ah Mat – The University of Sydney
Don’t leave a memory instead leave a solution: Co-designing with Aboriginal-Torres Strait Islander communities
Daniel Comensoli – LGBTIQ+ Health Australia
Current Evidence for Good Practice in Suicide Prevention for LGBTI people
Dr Lennart Reifels - Centre For Mental Health, The University Of Melbourne
Supporting nimble research responses to emerging issues in suicide prevention
Dr Alana Peters – KPMG
Leading with empathy: Embedding the voice of lived experience in future service design
National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
A/Prof Maree Toombs
I-ASIST suicide prevention training model for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
Prof Katherine Boydell – Black Dog Institute
What can be done to decrease suicidal behaviour in Australia? A call to action white paper
Dr Long Le – Deakin Health Economics
Advancing suicide prevention intervention research through cost-effectiveness analysis.
Dr Tony Pisani – University of Rochester / SafeSide Prevention
Video-Guided Suicide Prevention Education and Support for Youth Services Teams
Dr Laura Cox – Mates in Construction
Mateship Matters: An innovative suicide prevention program for sports clubs
Time (AEST)Event
3pm - 3:30pmAfternoon break,
Visit exhibition booths & poster displays
3:30pm - 4pmKEYNOTE SPEAKER
Sponsored by Mates in Construction
Professor Rory O’Connor, Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Glasgow
Covid-19, psychology and suicide research

Chair: Chris Lockwood, National CEO, MATES In Construction
4pm - 4:30pmPanel Discussion: Psychological and social risk factors
Rory O’Connor, Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Glasgow
Prof Jane Pirkis, Centre For Mental Health, The University Of Melbourne
Alana Peters, KPMG
Tom Brideson, Gayaa Dhuwi
Daniel Comensoli, LGBTIQ+ Health Australia
Tony Pisani, University of Rochester / SafeSide Prevention

Chair: Chris Lockwood, National CEO, MATES In Construction
4:30pm - 5pmClosing remarks
Jenny Brockie
Wednesday 21 April 2021
Time (AEST)Event
12pm - 1:30pmPre-symposium entry, exhibition booths open and poster viewing

12:45pm - 5pmDelegate wellbeing, group conversation and support
Moderated by Standby Support after Suicide
1pm - 1:20pmActivity: Stretch and Flex
Hayden will guide you through a stretch and flex session to loosen and strengthen your body before starting the day. By guiding you through lower and upper body stretch and mobility drills that target commonly affected areas like the hips, lower back, shoulders, and neck, Hayden will stretch and strengthen your tired muscles.
1:30pm - 1:40pmOpening session
Symposium MC: Jenny Brockie
1:40pm - 1:55pmPoster viewing
1:55pm - 3pmConcurrent streams
STREAM 1:
Lived Experience
Stream Partner: Wellbeing SA

Stream Chair: Justyna Rosa, Principal Project Officer, Suicide Prevention Networks, Wellbeing SA
STREAM 2:
Indigenous and Community Engagement
Stream Partner: LivingWorks Australia: sharing the new co-designed and led, Indigenous-ASIST two-day suicide first aid intervention skills training
STREAM 3:
Programs & Services
Stream Partner: Mental Health First Aid Australia

Stream Chair: Alyssia Rossetto, Research Manager, Mental Health First Aid Australia
STREAM 4:
Research
Stream Partner: LGBTIQ+ Health Australia

Stream Chair: Charlie Willbridge, Mindout Program Coordinator, LGBTIQ+ Health Australia
Graeme Holdsworth
Diversity and Inclusion of Lived Experience within Suicide Prevention. How far have we advanced and where to from here
Leilani Darwin - Head Of Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Centre, Black Dog Institute
Indigenous lived experience in suicide prevention (presented by Tiarnee Schafer)
Will Wrathall and Sue Johansson – Northern Beaches Council
The Northern Beaches Suicide Response
Dr Karl Andriessen – Centre for Mental Health, School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne
Bereavement by suicide and traumatic death in adolescents: The views of adolescents and parents
Rosiel Elwyn – Thompson Institute
Fear of the ’Impaired Practitioner’, Mandatory Reporting, and Clinician Suicide: Can Lived Experience Professionals Heal a Sick Mental Health Field?
Leilani’s presentation continued, presented by presented by Tiarnee SchaferRuth Jones – Headspace
Suicide Prevention and Response: sharing the Be You vision and resources for schools through context driven case studies
Anna Bernasochi - Switchboard
Creating LGBTIQA+ inclusive postvention systems: emerging new concepts and insights from qualitative research
Peter Schmiedgen and Jason Balmer – Being - Mental Health Consumers
Suicide support groups provided by people with lived experience for people with lived experience – a pilot project
Lindy McGregor - Regional Manager - Asia Pacific, LivingWorks Australia.
Skill-based development for school communities in suicide prevention through early intervention and safe and effective communication training
Rachel Hughes – Eastern Melbourne PHN
Crossroads to Community Wellbeing: Preventing suicide in a CALD community informed by a place-based Collective Impact framework.
Nikki Jamieson – University of New England
Moral injury – when old becomes new?

National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
Annie Rowland – Macedon Ranges Suicide Prevention Action Group
Supporting Mental Health - Macedon Ranges Community and Peer Support (MRCAPS)
Ms Manuela Macri – Cypress, Anglicare WA
Heart Art: A Work in Progress - like Grief: creative expression of children and young people bereaved by suicide
Richard Parker - Whyalla Suicide Prevention Network
Helping the Helpers: Responding to the needs of first responders in Country South Australia - a Whyalla Suicide Prevention Network Initiative
Laura Grattidge (nee Smith) - Centre For Rural Health/University of Tasmania
Key Learnings from the Local Evaluation of the National Suicide Prevention Trial in Tasmania
Time (AEST)Event
3pm - 3:30pmAfternoon break,
Visit exhibition booths & poster displays
3:30pm - 4pmKEYNOTE SPEAKER
Dr Sharon McDonnell
Sponsored by Relationships Australia
Emergency Services: What About Us?

Chair: Nick Tebbey, National Executive Officer, Relationships Australia
4pm - 4:30pmPanel Discussion: Postvention and exposure to suicide
Dr Sharon McDonnell, Founder and Managing Director, Suicide Bereavement UK
Graeme Holdsworth
Leilani Darwin
Nikki Jamieson, University of New England
Karl Andriessen, Centre for Mental Health, School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne

Chair: Nick Tebbey, National Executive Officer, Relationships Australia
4:30pm-4:35pmNational Suicide Prevention Conference 2022 Announcement
Nieves Murray, CEO, Suicide Prevention Australia
4:35pm - 5pmClosing remarks
Jenny Brockie
Thursday 22 April 2021
Time (AEST)Event
12pm - 1:30pmPre-symposium entry, exhibition booths open

12:45pm - 5pmDelegate wellbeing, group conversation and support
Moderated by Standby Support after Suicide
1pm - 1:20pmActivity: Calm drawing
Paul will take you through a calm drawing session including visual journaling for beginners. Bring along pens and papers.
1:30pm - 1:40pmOpening session
Symposium MC: Jenny Brockie
1:40pm - 1:55pmPoster viewing
1:55pm - 3pmConcurrent streams
STREAM 1:
Lived Experience
Stream Partner: Wellbeing SA

Stream Chair: Adam Clay, Principal Project Officer, Suicide Prevention, Wellbeing SA
STREAM 2:
Indigenous and Community Engagement
Stream Partner: LivingWorks Australia: sharing the new co-designed and led, Indigenous-ASIST two-day suicide first aid intervention skills training
Stream Chair: Dr Raelene Ward PhD RN - Senior Aboriginal Lecturer, School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Southern Queensland
STREAM 3:
Programs & Services
Stream Partner: Mental Health First Aid Australia

Stream Chair: Erin Healy, School and University Engagement Manager, Mental Health First Aid Australia
STREAM 4:
Research
Stream Partner: LGBTIQ+ Health Australia

Stream Chair: Zed Tintor, Director Programs and Development, LGBTIQ+ Health Australia
Elise Carrotte – SANE Australia
Better Off With You: Evaluation of a first-person peer-to-peer storytelling suicide prevention campaign pilot
Mandy Gibson - AISRAP
The positive impact of connection to culture in preventing suicide
Dr Debbie Scott – Turning Points
National Ambulance Surveillance
Professor Jane Pirkis – University of Melbourne
Research collaboration in suicide prevention – The Buoy Project
Dr Louise La Sala – Orygen
Can a social media intervention improve online communication about suicide?
Mandy Gibson’s session continued
A/Prof Fiona Shand – Black Dog Institute
Recognise and Respond community suicide prevention training: Results from a non-inferiority randomised controlled trial of a new Australian online gatekeeper training program
Dr Alyssia Rossetto – Mental Health First Aid Australia
In practice: Integrating research findings into suicide prevention programs in The Buoy Project
Dr Zoi Triandafilidis – Everymind
Sharing stories about lived experience of suicide: Co-designing guidelines for best practice public communication
Troy Williamson
Monitoring self-harm and analysing suicide among Aboriginal community members in order to improve suicide prevention approaches
Linda Leatherbarrow and Janet Martin – Queensland Health
Translating research results into clinical practice excellence in suicide care in mental health and alcohol and other drugs services in Queensland.
Dr Kylie King – Monash University
An upstream approach to preventing suicide for adolescent boys: a randomised controlled trial of the ’Breaking the Man Code’ workshops.

National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
Josh Wiseman – Batyr
OurHerd - Amplifying the voices of young people through a digital mobile app
Bernard Leckning - Menzies School Of Health Research
Risk factors for repeat hospital admissions involving self-harm: Reflections for prevention from the Northern Territory

National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
A/Prof John Allan - Royal Australian And New Zealand College Of Psychiatrists
Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists: Suicide Prevention Taskforce
Prof Katherine Boydell – Black Dog Institute
Edge of the Present: A Virtual Reality Tool to Cultivate Future Thinking, Positive Mood and Wellbeing

National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
Time (AEST)Event
3pm - 3:30pmAfternoon break
Visit exhibition booths & poster displays
3:30pm - 4pmKEYNOTE SPEAKER
Professor Siobhan O’Neill
Sponsored by Orygen
Trauma, mental health and suicidal behaviour in NI

Chair: Jo Robinson, Associate Professor, Head Suicide Prevention, Orygen
4pm - 4:30pmPanel Discussion: Support and care to vulnerable population groups
Professor Siobhan O’Neill, Professor of Mental Health Sciences, Ulster University and Interim Mental Health Champion Northern Ireland
Josh Wiseman, Batyr
Mandy Gibson
Debbie Scott, Turning Points
Katherine Boydell, Black Dog Institute
Kylie King, Monash University

Chair: Jo Robinson, Associate Professor, Head Suicide Prevention, Orygen
4:30pm - 5pmClosing remarks
Nieves Murray, CEO, Suicide Prevention Australia

Announcement of 3-Minute Thesis winner

Announcement of Poster Competition Winner Announcement of Scavenger Hunt winner
5:30pm - 7pmMEMBER ONLY EVENT: International Keynote Speakers and Special Guests

Chair: John Brogden AM, Lifeline National Board Chair

Hon. Andrew Leigh MP, Co-Chair, Parliamentary Friends of Suicide Prevention Group
Julian Leeser MP, Co-Chair, Parliamentary Friends of Suicide Prevention Group (pre-recorded message)
Carla Na Nagara, Director, Suicide Prevention Office, Ministry of Health New Zealand
Professor Jo Robinson, Associate Professor, Orygen and 2nd Vice President, International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP)
Dr Sharon McDonnell, Founder and Managing Director, Suicide Bereavement UK
Siobhan O’Neill, Professor of Mental Health Sciences, Ulster University, and Interim Mental Health Champion Northern Ireland


Fact or fiction: Envisioning a best practice approach to suicide prevention

Message from Julian Leeser MP
I am sorry I cannot be with you for the panel discussion of the Suicide Prevention Australia Symposium 2021. I was really looking forward to being part of this event.
Unfortunately, the logistics involved in hearings for the Migration Committee require travel in regional Victoria and I cannot guarantee I can maintain connection to the online session.
I apologise to the organisers and participants and wish you all the best with the conference.
Julian Leeser MP
Federal Member for Berowra
NumberAccepted Posters:
1Sarah Holland, Black Dog Institute
BrighterSide – a new approach to the design of a self-guided app for suicidal ideation
2Jo Read, North Western Melbourne PhN
LGBTIQ Suicide Prevention co-designed Systems-based Framework
3Alison Clements, Neami National
A Case Study in Postvention with Funeral Staff: Initial Findings
4Demee Rheinberger, Black Dog Institute
Qualitative exploration of the experience of help seekers and support persons use of the Emergency Department during a suicidal crisis.
5Dr Karien Hill, La Trobe University
Enhancing community suicide risk assessment and protective intervention action plans through a Bystander Intervention Model-informed video: A Randomized Controlled Trial
6Dr Laura Van Velzen, Orygen
Suicide-related mental images in young people with suicidal ideation: development of a treatment protocol for a potential risk factor for suicidal behaviour
National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
7Jessica Ingram, Everymind
Supporting suicide prevention in refugees and asylum seekers
8Victoria Rasmussen, Black Dog Institute
Differential effects of intimate partner violence type on suicidal ideation and suicide attempt: Using structural equation modelling to predict suicide risk in Australian emergency department service users
9Ingrid Ozols, Suicide Prevention Australia
Lived Experience in research
10A/Prof Rohan Borschmann
Interventions to reduce suicidal thoughts and behaviours in people who have had contact with the criminal justice system: A rapid review evidence check for the National Suicide Prevention Taskforce
National Suicide Prevention Research Fund research
11Dr Karl Andriessen, University of Melbourne
Assisting suicide prevention researchers to navigate the ethics process: towards a resource for researchers

Suicide Prevention Australia Symposium MC: Jenny Brockie

Jenny Brockie is one of Australia’s most respected and experienced journalists, broadcasters and facilitators.

Jenny’s extensive media career began at the ABC and spans television, online, radio and print. She has won a swag of media awards including the coveted Gold Walkley, two AFI Awards, a Logie, a Human Rights Award and three other Walkley Awards. She was the host of SBS’s Insight program for 19 years, and received 8 United Nations Association of Australia Media Peace Awards for her work on the program.

Jenny has hosted important national and international discussions with renowned thought-leaders to explore, challenge and provoke current and future thinking on subjects as diverse as agriculture and the future of food, education standards, security, health, the arts and culture.

She has also interviewed many prominent local and international figures including former Australian Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove and former Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

INTERNATIONAL KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

CARLA NA NAGARA

Director - Suicide Prevention Office, Ministry of Health New Zealand

Carla joined the Ministry of Health in October 2019 as the Director of the Suicide Prevention Office. She came to the position after having spent the previous 12 years as a coroner committed to understanding the context of suicides, taking the approach that suicides must be seen not simply as the consequence of a mental health problem or a moment of distress of the person who took their life, but as an event that is considered in its broader socio-cultural context. Through this work, Carla developed an alternative model of suicide investigation, which sought to build effective engagement with whãnau and communities. This resulted in greater understanding of the dynamics of the respective cases, and much greater potential to engage with whãnau and communities to develop recommendations to lower future risk.

Carla has a BA(Hons) in sociology and Maori Studies and worked in policy and research before training as a lawyer and practicing in the fields of employment and family law, focussing primarily on relationship property and child care work.

Session title: From a Standing Start: Reflections and Lessons – establishing a national Suicide Prevention Office from scratch
On World Suicide Prevention Day in 2019 the New Zealand government released its new national suicide prevention strategy and action plan, and announced the establishment of the country’s first Suicide Prevention Office which opened on 27 November 2019. In this paper the Office’s Director will speak about progress being made towards implementing Every Life Matters – He Tapu te Oranga o ia tangata: Suicide Prevention Strategy 2019 – 2029 and Suicide Prevention Action Plan 2019 -2024 for Aotearoa New Zealand, the framing of the issues in Aotearoa New Zealand, the priorities that the Office set for itself, and the challenges of coordinating a diverse but committed sector.

Keynote Speaker Partner (Carla Na Nagara)

RORY O'CONNOR

Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Glasgow

Rory O’Connor PhD CPsychol AFBPsS FAcSS is Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Glasgow in Scotland, a Past President of the International Academy of Suicide Research and a Vice President of the International Association for Suicide Prevention. Rory leads the Suicidal Behaviour Research Laboratory (Web: www.suicideresearch.info; Twitter: @suicideresearch) at Glasgow, the leading suicide/self-harm research group in Scotland. He also leads the Mental Health & Wellbeing Research Group at Glasgow. He has published extensively in the field of suicide and self-harm, specifically concerning the psychological processes which precipitate suicidal behaviour and self-harm. In addition, he is author of Understanding Suicidal Behaviour (with Noel Sheehy), co-editor of The Routledge Major Works Series on Suicide (with Keith Hawton) and of the International Handbook of Suicide Prevention (2nd edition with Jane Pirkis). He serves on the Scientific Review Board of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and is Co-Editor-in-Chief of Archives of Suicide Research and Associate Editor of Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, and Behavior Therapy. Rory acts as an advisor to a range of national and international organisations including national governments on the areas of suicide and self-harm. He is also Co-Chair of the Academic Advisory Group to the Scottish Government’s National Suicide Prevention Leadership Group.

Keynote Speaker Partner (Rory O’Connor)

DR SHARON MCDONNELL

Founder and Managing Director, Suicide Bereavement UK

Dr Sharon McDonnell is the Founder and Managing Director of Suicide Bereavement UK and Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Manchester. She has specialised in suicide bereavement research for over 20 years and is a recognised international leader in this field. Prior to setting up Suicide Bereavement UK, Dr McDonnell led research at the Centre for Mental Health and Safety at the University of Manchester, an internationally recognised research centre with a major influence on UK policy and practice.

Sharon and her research teams have translated research findings into evidence-based suicide bereavement training. These include Postvention Assisting those Bereaved by Suicide (PABBS) and Emergency Services Postvention Response (ESPR) training. Both help address an unmet need and are first of their kind internationally. Dr McDonnell is currently leading the National Suicide Bereavement Survey, a collaboration between the University of Manchester and Support After Suicide Partnership. Over 7,000 people participated in this study. Making it the largest suicide bereavement survey internationally. The report will be launched later this year and will generate national, international and media interest. Sharon has been personally bereaved by suicide and the reason why she works in this field.

Session title: Emergency Services: What About Us?

Keynote Speaker Partner (Dr Sharon McDonnell)

SIOBHAN O'NEILL

Professor of Mental Health Sciences, Ulster University and Interim Mental Health Champion Northern Ireland

Siobhan O’Neill is a Professor of Mental Health Sciences at Ulster University, and Interim Mental Health Champion for Northern Ireland. Her research programmes focus on trauma mental illness and suicidal behaviour in Northern Ireland, and the transgenerational transmission of trauma.

She is now on a mission to improve the mental health of the people of NI by promoting evidence-based services and care for those who suffer from mental illness and suicidal thoughts.

As Interim Mental Health Champion for Northern Ireland, she will advise and assist in the promotion of mental health and wellbeing though all policies and services throughout the province. Her role is as a public advocate for mental health, and to be a voice for those otherwise voiceless. Her goal is to communicate the collective voices of people with lived experience and their families and carers, and to advocate for communities impacted by mental health inequalities.

Session title: Trauma, mental health and suicidal behaviour in NI
In this keynote lecture Siobhan examines the trends in suicide rates in NI over the last 20 years, and discusses the associations between suicide and Troubles related trauma. The World Health Organisation’s, World Mental Health Surveys, have shown that high proportions of the population (39%) were exposed to a conflict related traumatic event and that this was associated with severe and enduring mental illness. As a consequence of the Troubles, NI has very high rates of PTSD, and exposure to conflict-related trauma increases the risk of suicidal behaviour. There are concerns that the next generation is now at risk through the impact that the conflict had on the mental health of their parents, and the impact of the legacy of the Troubles on communities. This is one reason why the suicide rates are high among young people who appear not to have been directly affected by the years of violence.

The Ulster University Student Well-Being study found that almost a third of students had suicidal ideation in the year prior to starting university and that one on 5 had self-harmed. This study found that childhood adversities (ACEs and childhood trauma) were common risk factors for suicidal behaviour, and that students who identified as non-heterosexual were also at higher risk. These studies point to the need to adopt a trauma- and ACEs- informed approach to suicide prevention and the delivery of services to the vulnerable. This means a recognition of the impact of trauma exposure on the brain and body, improved support for at risk families, particularly in children’s early years, and mental health provision in schools. There is a need to increase the availability of evidence-based suicide prevention treatments, and also treatments for mental illness and trauma. Social policies that impact upon minority stress, poverty and deprivation are also relevant to suicide prevention in NI.

Keynote Speaker Partner

LOCAL KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

CHRISTINE MORGAN

National Suicide Prevention Adviser, CEO - National Mental Health Commission

Ms Christine Morgan is the CEO of the National Mental Health Commission and National Suicide Prevention Adviser to Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Ms Morgan is a passionate leader in mental health care reform, committed to listening and responding to the voice and needs of those with lived experience.

Prior to joining the Commission, Ms Morgan was CEO of the Butterfly Foundation for eating disorders and Director of the National Eating Disorders Collaboration. As former CEO of the Butterfly Foundation, she led a collaborative advocacy strategy that included amplification of eating disorders as a serious mental and physical health issue. This is now being replicated internationally. In the not for profit sector, Ms Morgan was General Manager at Wesley Mission, over the areas of Corporate Services; and Community & Family Development. Prior to joining Wesley Mission, Ms Morgan was Executive General Manager responsible for managing the strategic direction and business unit effectiveness of the Wholesale, Broadband & Media Business Unit at Telstra.

Ms Morgan brings connection and passion to mental health reform, built on the networks she established in the corporate world, her broad legal expertise, her extensive not-for-profit experience and her strong ability to demonstrate to people how their contribution can make a real difference.

LIVED EXPERIENCE KEYNOTE: MARK DAVIS

Lived Experience Representative

Mark is a 70+ year old volunteer in the mental health and suicide prevention fields to which he devotes his time and resources. He is determined others do not fall into all the pitfalls he did and go on to happier and more fruitful lives.

He was invalided suicidal from Police many years ago with what later became known as PTSD, anxiety and depression. Since then, Mark has held long term voluntary occupations as a university educator, later an honorary research associate at a large museum.

Mark sits on a number of Governmental, Peak Body National and State Committees as a lived experience representative.

He additionally aims to spend 20 hours per week in a small team on a National Forum giving on-line Mental Health Peer Support. He specialises in persons at risk but also deals with a wide range of other matters from domestic abuse to depression.

From this he gains a broad view of the problems faced by Lived Experience and Mental Health Consumers.

In addition, he finds public speaking a rewarding occupation which directly allows information and hope based on his own experiences to be offered to many.

He is the co-recipient of the “Outstanding Contribution to Suicide Prevention” LiFE Award (Tas). Mark also holds the National Police Service Medal due to his invalidity as well as being a co-recipient of the Governor General’s Medallion for his Peer Work.

By way of change of pace Mark collects vintage TV shows and movies.

ABORIGINAL & TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER KEYNOTE: PROFESSOR PAT DUDGEON

Director - Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP)

Professor Pat Dudgeon was born and raised in Darwin and her tribal affiliation is with the Bardi and Nyuulnyul people.

She was the first Indigenous Australian to graduate with a psychology degree, and is currently the Director of the UWA Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention (CBPATSISP), funded under the Commonwealth Government’s National Suicide Prevention Leadership and Support Program. She is also a Chief Investigator on an NHMRC Million Minds Mission Grant investigating Indigenous mental health.

Professor Dudgeon has published extensively in Indigenous mental health, social and emotional wellbeing and suicide prevention. She is a board member of Indigenous Australian Psychologists Association and Fellow in the Australian Psychological Society.

Professor Dudgeon is actively involved with the Aboriginal community and has a strong commitment to social justice. She always works in ways that empower and develop Indigenous people.

MEMBER ONLY PANEL GUESTS

JULIAN LEESER MP

Co-Chair, Parliamentary Friends of Suicide Prevention

Julian has been the Member for Berowra in the House of Representatives since July 2016. He has served on numerous Parliamentary committees and is currently Chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Migration and Chair of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Indigenous Affairs. He also sits on the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security and the House Standing Committee of Privileges and Members’ Interests.

During his first term of Parliament he was Co-Chair of the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition Relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and was Chair of the Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs. Since November 2016 Julian has served as the Parliamentary representative and Non-Executive Director on the Council of the National Library of Australia.  Julian is the Chair for the Parliamentary Friends of India and Suicide Prevention Australia.

Julian has experience as a lawyer, University administrator, think tank and company director.  Prior to his election, Julian was a senior executive at Australian Catholic University.  He served on several boards including Mercy Health, Teach for Australia and Playwriting Australia.  Julian was previously Executive Director of the Menzies Research Centre. He also worked as a lawyer at Mallesons Stephen Jacques (now King & Wood Mallesons) and was an associate to High Court Justice Ian Callinan.

Julian has degrees in arts and law from the University of NSW and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.  He spent 2006-2007 as a Visiting Fellow at the Taubman Centre at the John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

DR ANDREW LEIGH MP

Co-Chair, Parliamentary Friends of Suicide Prevention

Andrew Leigh is the Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury and Charities, and Federal Member for Fenner in the ACT. Prior to being elected in 2010, Andrew was a professor of economics at the Australian National University. He holds a PhD in Public Policy from Harvard, having graduated from the University of Sydney with first class honours in Arts and Law. Andrew is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences, and a past recipient of the ‘Young Economist Award’, a prize given every two years by the Economics Society of Australia to the best economist under 40.

His books include Disconnected (2010), Battlers and Billionaires (2013), The Economics of Just About Everything (2014), The Luck of Politics (2015), Choosing Openness: Why Global Engagement is Best for Australia (2017), Randomistas: How Radical Researchers Changed Our World (2018), Innovation + Equality: How to Create a Future That Is More Star Trek Than Terminator (with Joshua Gans) (2019) and Reconnected: A Community Builder’s Handbook (with Nick Terrell) (2020). Andrew is a keen marathon runner, and hosts a podcast titled “The Good Life: Andrew Leigh in Conversation”, which is available on Apple Podcasts.

Andrew is the father of three sons – Sebastian, Theodore and Zachary, and lives with his wife Gweneth in Canberra. He has been a member of the Australian Labor Party since 1991.

JOHN BROGDEN AM

Chair, Lifeline Australia

“They say the comeback is greater than the setback” – John Brogden

As one of Australia’s leading politicians and now a business leader, John Brogden is living proof that even from the darkest places, there can be a way back. Whilst John has reached the highest levels in his professional career, his personal journey is one of highs and lows, strength and courage.

John’s career in politics started when he became a Member for Pittwater in the NSW Parliament in 1996. In 2002, he was elected Leader of the Opposition on his 33rd birthday – the youngest person ever to lead a major political party in Australia.

However, it’s John’s personal story that best illustrates his resilience and his incredible ability to come back from the lowest of lows. His willingness to share the details of his journey to recovery make him a compelling and inspirational storyteller.

John was diagnosed with depression in early 2006 following a suicide attempt in 2005. His passion for mental illness stems from a breakdown that marked a turning point in his life and reframed the discussion around depression, particularly in the corporate world. Thanks to his profile, John has changed the way we talk about suicide and in turn, is helping thousands of individuals through his involvement with Lifeline Australia as Chairman.

John is also the Patron of Sailability Pittwater, Bilgola Surf Lifesaving Club, Avalon Beach Surf Lifesaving Club and Kookaburra Kids. He was appointed to the Board of Landcom as Chairman in January 2012 and accepted the permanent role of Chief Executive Officer in May 2018, having acted in the role of Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer from 2017. From 2015 to 2017, John was the Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD). Prior to this, he was Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Services Council from 2009 to 2015, and Chief Executive Officer of Manchester Unity from 2006 to 2008.