Wednesday, 2 December 2015
Social Media, Mental Health
We live in an exciting age of technology disruption. Our world is changing at an incredibly fast rate. Globalisation is shrinking our globe at a rate we could not imagine only a few short years ago and technology disruption is changing the way we do business in this country and across the globe. I see this as an enormous opportunity. It is natural for us to respond to change with fear, but if we embrace that opportunity, if we embrace that change, we make it our friend and then we can drive the future prosperity of our country and of our communities.
I want to pay a huge tribute and say a massive thank you to Facebook for coming to my electorate to talk to what they tell me was the largest group of small business owners they have spoken to in this country around how they can change their business models. Facebook is the largest media organisation in the world. We know the way that we are consuming information is changing at an incredibly fast rate. Where a business previously might have been putting ads in the local newspaper or on local radio, the opportunity to reach out to new customers and new markets by engaging in online media, particularly through Facebook, is an incredibly exciting opportunity. Thank you to Facebook for flying in people from Singapore and from Sydney. Particularly, it was very exciting for me that the social media team from Culture Kings and the incredible Sammie Lee from Live Music Promotions came along to share their experiences of social media. This will give local businesses a real boost, help grow their prosperity and help them employ more people.
The other thing I want to talk about while I have the opportunity is how we are tackling the huge challenge of mental health, particularly for young people, in our local community. I have been campaigning for years around improving mental health services for locals, particularly for local young people. It is hard to measure but anecdotally we have twice the national average suicide rate for young people, and we should do everything in our power to address this enormous need across our region. That is why, again, I am very excited to announce that headspace has chosen the Lakes Centre in Caboolture as the site to develop a new headspace facility. This is something I have spoken to the health minister about over a very long period of time and I have campaigned very hard to have this space delivered in the new year. I have encouraged them to paint the building a bit quicker so that people can move a bit quicker, and very early in the new year headspace will be opening this new facility in the heart of our region, in Caboolture. This will provide the best quality care for young people and it will provide outreach to ensure that those people who really need high-quality care are actually getting it. This will make a huge difference in the lives of so many locals. I am very proud to say that headspace is making Caboolture home.