It’s been an exciting year for Ella McGregor, Aboriginal Clinician for Forensic Mental Health in Community Health, based in Dandenong.
In January she was married on her home country in Tasmania, joined Monash Health in March, and soon after had to quickly adapt to the changed service delivery model caused by COVID.
Ella is a palawa woman from the plintamirimina tribe, and says she was inspired to work in mental health as a result of her own and her peers’ experiences in Tasmania. palawa/pakana are the traditional owners of Tasmania.
“I often saw Indigenous youth struggle, with no Indigenous psychologist in Tasmania.”
Ella is currently completing a Bachelor of Psychology (with Honours) at Deakin University.
She works with local Aboriginal clients who are on a community corrections order, or on parole following imprisonment, with mental health treatment as a condition of their order.
“I ensure they are linked to culturally appropriate services, as they deal with the complex issues that have led to their corrections order, as well as provide them with support to help get them back on track.”
Ella agrees the role can be challenging, but says she has learned to understand that the offender is more than their offending.
She is proud of the revival of palawa culture; an expanded second palawa kani dictionary has recently been published, and was especially proud to be married on country.
At Monash Health we celebrate and value the diverse skills and experience Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people bring to our workforce.
Ella’s story highlights progress of our Aboriginal employment programs, which have resulted in a record 75 Aboriginal employees across Monash Health.
If you are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, we encourage you to apply for positions at Monash Health. Learn more about our Aboriginal employment program.