With Julie Collins MP
New figures released today underscore the devastating impact the postal survey had on the mental health of LBGTI Australians, their friends and families.
Labor is deeply concerned by the results of The Australia Institute and the National LGBTI Health Alliance report.
As the House of Representatives continues debate on same sex marriage, these figures are a sobering reminder of the negative impact the postal survey has had on an already vulnerable group of Australians.
Turnbull should recognise this and commit additional funding for front line mental health services to assist LGBTI Australians in this difficult time.
The report revealed almost 80 per cent of LGBTI Australians and almost 60 per cent of supporters said that they found the marriage equality debate considerably or extremely stressful.
LGBTI Australians respondents experienced depression, anxiety and stress increased by more than a third after the announcement of the vote, compared to the six months before the announcement.
We know too that during the course of the survey, LGBTIQ phone-counselling service QLife recorded more than a 20 per cent increase in the amount of calls.
Labor has repeatedly called on Turnbull to provide additional funding for front line mental health services.
The Opposition Leader Bill Shorten wrote to Turnbull in September urging the Government to allocate more funding to LGBTI counselling and trauma services.
Labor never received a response from Turnbull to this request.
Turnbull previously conceded a plebiscite on marriage equality would harm LGBTI Australians, considered extra funding for mental health groups, but never delivered on it.
Lesbian, gay and bisexual Australians are twice as likely to have a high to very high level of psychological distress as compared to their heterosexual peers.