Research

Publications

Peer support reduces carer burden

In a world first, La Trobe University research has shown how peer-led support programs for family and friends who provide regular support to an adult diagnosed with a mental health condition can significantly improve carer well-being.

Disparities in police proceedings and court sentencing for females versus males who commit sexual offences in New Zealand

This study investigated whether there are disparities in the way in which police proceed against females and males who commit sexual offences. We explored whether there are discrepancies in the severity of court sentences handed down to female and male sexual offenders. Using police and sentencing data, we compared the proportion of females and males who proceeded to court action once charged with a sexual offence and, separately, the severity of sentencing handed down to both genders. In terms of police decision-making processes, compared to males, a smaller proportion of females proceeded to “court action” for their offences. Furthermore, the severity of sentences handed down to males was greater than those handed down to females, both generally and when the sexual offence could be directly matched. These findings are discussed in the context of gender differences in how these crimes are processed and implications for justice, intervention, and community safety.

US Study Reveals Surprising Results on Female Victimisation of Males (PDF)

“Unless we uproot the simplistic stereotypes that limit understandings about sexual victimisation, we will not address it accurately, nor will we respond to victims empathically. Those victimised by women are doubly harmed when we fail to treat their abuse as worthy of concern.” …Semple, Flores, Meyer

Using Peer Support in Developing Empowering Mental Health Services (UPSIDES): Background, Rationale and Methodology

Peers are people with lived experience of mental illness. Peer support is an established intervention in which peers offer support to others with mental illness. A large proportion of people living with severe mental illness receive no care. The care gap is largest in low- and middle-income countries, with detrimental effects on individuals and societies. The global shortage of human resources for mental health is an important driver of the care gap. Peers are an under-used resource in global mental health.

Taking a Gamble for High Rewards? Management Perspectives on the Value of Mental Health Peer Workers

Mental health peer work is attracting growing interest and provides a potentially impactful method of service user involvement in mental health design and delivery, contributing to mental health reform. The need to effectively support this emerging workforce is consequently increasing. This study aimed to better understand the views of management in relation to peer work and specifically explores the value of peer work from the perspective of management.

The Catholic Boys (Book)

“The Catholic Boys” is a new book by author Mike Ledingham detailing the profound impact of sexual abuse of Mike and two younger brothers by the same Catholic priest. The three Ledingham boys tell their stories of going from being happy, feisty kids to troubled teenagers who became angry, abusing (and self-abusing) men, with consequences for their families. Their plight was only recognised by the Catholic Church after a tortuous series of negotiations. The stories of Michael, Gerry and Chris are introduced by their older sister Mary, who provides readers with background on each with love and admiration for their survival. Their stories detail in heart breaking clarity the wide-reaching impacts of their childhood sexual abuse.

Data Summary: Child Sexual Abuse (PDF)

This data summary is one of six produced by the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse NZFVC in 2017. The other five data summaries are concerned with Family Violence Deaths, Violence Against Women, Children and Youth Affected by Family Violence, Adult Sexual Violence, and Child Sexual Abuse and Adult Sexual Violence – Perpetration by Gender. This data summary is a collation of publicly available information about sexual abuse and has been sourced from self-report surveys and administrative data sources.

Projects

NZ Research Team to Inform Peer Support Effectiveness (PDF)

Examining the journeys of adult male survivors of sexual abuse and the services they need: identifying effective practice and gaps from a ready model of peer support in New Zealand.