Psychologist Paul Martin to present on working with transgender client groups

Paul Martin, Senior Consultant and Psychologist at Assure Programs will present on working with transgender client groups at the 16th International Mental Health Conference being held at QT Hotel, Surfers Paradise 13-14 August 2015.

Paul Martin Paul Martin

Paul has a strong history of achieving positive outcomes and facilitating transformational change with leaders, individuals, teams and organisations for over 25 years.  Widely respected and inspiring coach & facilitator with expertise in leadership, team, well-being, organisational development, positive workplaces and outplacement.

With a background in LGBTI mental health, facilitated significant social justice change outcomes through increasing awareness of the link between mental health & marriage equality.

Abstract Title:
Preparing Mental Health Practitioners for the Increasing Numbers of People Coming Out as Transgender

According to medical practitioners specialising in Gender Variance, there has been a ‘trans-tsunami’ in recent times with a large number of people coming out as transgender. It is therefore now likely that many more mental health practitioners will experience a client or patient coming out as transgender at some point in their career.

Mental health practitioners and GPs are often the first port of call for people who are on a journey of gender transitioning. Unfortunately there are many professionals who don’t have adequate knowledge and skills to be able to provide effective interventions and support. Training is also often inadequate in undergraduate and postgraduate University degrees. This presentation will provide an overview of some of the key learnings from over 25 years practicing in the area of transgender mental health.

The relationship between transgender populations and mental health professionals has in part had a negative history and is often seen as adversarial. This is influenced by the perception that health professionals are the ‘gate-keepers’ to the transitioning process. The traditional mental health response to transgender populations is to adhere to the WPATH (World Professional Association for Transgender Health) 'Standards of Care for the Health of Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Nonconforming People”. Whilst it contains important and accurate information, the underlying model has recently been challenged by an emerging trend towards a ‘Client Centred’ approach. This takes the view that the client or patient is the expert in their own journey and has generated some controversy.

This presentation will provide delegates with an overview of these issues and some clarity so they feel more confident when considering working with transgender client groups.

For more information on the 16th International Mental Health Conference please visit the website here.

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