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“There’s a wonderful aspect of One Door because people go to meetings or you talk and you find out we’re not alone in this walkway and this pathway and this thing.”
Why did you decide to become involved with One Door?
I’ve been involved with Pioneer Clubhouse for many many years, as my son has a mental illness. As you know, most people with a mental illness don't have many friends because they get isolated. My background is in finance, and I was in that business for 35-40 years. So, I joined the Board and said, "Well, let me help you raise money." Every organisation needs money, no matter how they're funded, they always need money to support their programs and services.
What changes would you like to see for people living with a mental illness in Australia?
The first one that comes to mind is when people get sick, they’re being put straight into hospitals, but there’s no beds available. There’s going to be even fewer beds in the future because they're outsourcing, and they want people to be looked after in the community. I'm not convinced with this new format and I think it needs to change in the future.
What would you want people to know or understand about mental illness?
The general public just doesn't understand mental illness. They think that if you're mentally ill you’re violent. Mental illness and violence aren't necessarily associated. The public needs to be aware that mental illness does not mean violence. It needs compassion. We have to deal with people with mental illness in a different way, but you shouldn't be afraid of them.
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