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Multicultural Australia (MA) is a foundational member of the Queensland Community Alliance and recognises that this Inquiry is initiated in response to the grass-roots process of community listening and organising through the Alliance.
MA commends the Queensland Government in honouring the commitment provided to the Alliance around developing a state-wide strategy to address social isolation and loneliness, starting with a Parliamentary Inquiry.
MA’s submission seeks to highlight issues affecting people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (including refugees, migrants, people seeking asylum, and temporary visa holders) that can cause loneliness; and the barriers they may face in getting help to address these.
MA’s recommendation is for the consideration of a comprehensive strategy to address social isolation and loneliness in Queensland.
Any such strategy must be informed by the voices and experiences of communities across Queensland (including around raising awareness of the risks of loneliness, as well as, in the design of specific interventions to tackle loneliness and isolation).
MA recommends additional research around developing evidence-based measures of loneliness that can easily translate across languages and cultures.
Any such strategy should consider adequate resourcing and support at the local level for frontline resources and community spaces to mobilise action and support from within the community.