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“You Can’t Replace That Feeling of Connection to Culture and Country”: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Parents’ Experiences of the COVID-19 Pandemic

journal contribution
posted on 2023-03-30, 02:58 authored by Michelle Kennedy, Tess Bright, Simon Graham, Christina Heris, Shannon K Bennetts, Renee Fiolet, Elise Davis, Kimberley A Jones, Janine Mohamed, Caroline Atkinson, Catherine Chamberlain
This Aboriginal-led study explores Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander parents’ experiences of COVID-19. 110 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander parents were interviewed between October 2020 and March 2022. Participants were recruited through community networks and partner health services in South Australia, Victoria, and Northern Territory, Australia. Participants were predominantly female (89%) and based in Victoria (47%) or South Australia (45%). Inductive thematic analysis identified three themes: (1) Changes to daily living; (2) Impact on social and emotional wellbeing; and (3) Disconnection from family, community, and culture. COVID-19 impacted Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families. Disruption to cultural practice, and disconnection from country, family, and community was detrimental to wellbeing. These impacts aggravated pre-existing inequalities and may continue to have greater impact on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander parents and communities due to intergenerational trauma, stemming from colonisation, violence and dispossession and ongoing systemic racism. We advocate for the development of a framework that ensures an equitable approach to future public health responses for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

History

Journal

International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

Volume

19

Article number

ARTN 16724

Pagination

16724-16724

Location

Switzerland

ISSN

1661-7827

eISSN

1660-4601

Language

en

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Issue

24

Publisher

MDPI AG