We Subtly Inflicts Depression to Indigenous Australians, Campaign Says

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By Athena Yenko | July 30, 2014 9:23 AM EST

BeyondBlue campaigns against subtle racism that inflicts depression among aboriginal Australians.

The television campaign, created by mental health organization BeyondBlue, is calling attention to subtle but almost every day acts of racism casted against the aboriginal Australians in the forms of jokes, glances and curt remarks.

The campaign said that subtle racism inflicts distress, depression and anxiety among indigenous Australians.

"Our job is to  raise awareness for anxiety, depression and suicide, we know that the rate of distress amongst Aboriginal people is three times higher than the rest of us and the rate of suicide is on average two-and-a-half times higher," BeyondBlue's chief executive Georgie Harman said.

Mental health advocate and chairman for BeyondBlue, Jeff kennet, said that their survey of 1000 non-indigenous Australians  revealed that they were racist towards the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

"This research shows that racism in Australia is still common and that many people engage in racist behaviour," he said.

The survey also showed that a third of non-indigenous Australians perceive the aboriginals as "sometimes a bit lazy" and that they should act more like the non-indigenous Australians.

The data also showed that one in five Australians budge when an indigenous Australian sat next to them and one in ten admitted joking about the aboriginals in the pub.

The survey was supported by a recent data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showing that indigenous Australians' tendency to commit suicide is two times more than non-indigenous Australians.

"The fact of the matter is racism is very in real in Australia, hopefully this makes Australia stand up and realise how hurtful it is. We are all Australians and Aboriginal people have suffered systemic policies throughout the years which makes us feel invaluable, invisible and worthless in this county," Indigenous Northern Territory senator Nova Perris said.

He underlined that the suicide rate among the aboriginal in Northern territory was five times more than those non-aboriginal Australians.

"It's that systemic racism that has been so confronting in Australia, and people are doing it when they don't realise how hurtful it is and it's because Aboriginal people have been typecast and stereotyped over the years."

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