The harassment of Queensland members of parliament: a mental health concern

Pathé, Michele, Phillips, Jane, Perdacher, Elke and Heffernan, Ed (2014) The harassment of Queensland members of parliament: a mental health concern. Psychiatry Psychology and Law, 21 4: 577-584. doi:10.1080/13218719.2013.858388

Author Pathé, Michele
Phillips, Jane
Perdacher, Elke
Heffernan, Ed
Title The harassment of Queensland members of parliament: a mental health concern
Journal name Psychiatry Psychology and Law   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1321-8719
Publication date 2014-01-01
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/13218719.2013.858388
Volume 21
Issue 4
Start page 577
End page 584
Total pages 8
Place of publication Abingdon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract International research suggests that problematic approaches and attacks on politicians are frequently perpetrated by individuals with severe mental illness who are either unknown to mental health services or who have disengaged from care. The current study investigated the extent of harassing behaviours towards Queensland State Parliamentarians and of perceived mental illness in their harassers. An anonymous survey was sent to all 89 Queensland Members of Parliament exploring a range of harassment behaviours. Responses were received from 48% of parliamentarians, 93% of whom reported at least one form of harassment. The most common intrusions were alarming behaviour at the electoral office and inappropriate correspondence or telephone calls, but threats to harm and attempted or actual physical assault were also reported. Almost half the perpetrators were thought to be mentally ill. These findings support a role for mental health intervention in managing risk to politicians and catalysing care for those who pursue them.
Keyword Fixation
Public figure harassment
Public health intervention
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes First published online: 5 December 2013.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 5 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 6 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Fri, 15 Aug 2014, 20:40:30 EST by Sheila Cleary on behalf of Psychiatry - Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital