Meet John Gilroy

31 August 2011

John Gilroy.
John Gilroy.

John Gilroy

Lecturer, Indigenous Health

Faculty of Health Sciences

John Gilroy BA (Hons) is a Koori man from the South Coast of NSW and is a lecturer in Indigenous Health at the University of Sydney's Faculty of Health Sciences. He is currently completing his PhD investigating the main factors that influence the participation of Aboriginal people in disability services. John is also the Chairperson of the NSW Aboriginal Community Care Gathering and advisor for National Disability Services.

How long have you been with the University?

I joined the Faculty of Health Sciences in early 2011. Prior to that, I worked in the disability, ageing and community care services industry for over ten years in the non-government and government sectors.

What are you areas of interest/research specialisation?

My areas of research interest include Aboriginal people with a disability, mental health, Elders and older people. I specialise in policy, research and community development in Aboriginal communities.

What achievements are you most proud of?

1. Creating and managing the National Disability Services NSW Aboriginal Resources and Pathways projects portfolio, which identified successful ways to increase and improve outcomes for Aboriginal people in disability services through empowering Aboriginal communities. The projects were identified by the NSW Ombudsman as successful ways in supporting Aboriginal people with a disability. Some of the projects were later expanded state-wide by the NSW Government.

2. Working with small and large mainstream disability service providers to embed services in Aboriginal communities to improve the quality of support for Aboriginal people with a disability, carers and their carers.

3. Working with Indigenous communities, advocates and people with a disability to increase the role and influence of the NSW Aboriginal Community Care Gathering and the NSW Aboriginal Disability Network in working with government and Aboriginal communities to empower Aboriginal people with a disability, Elders and their communities.

What is the best thing about working at the University?

Where do I start? Firstly, working with highly committed and dedicated people to increase the level and quality of intellectual capital in Indigenous health. Having the opportunity to work with universities and research agencies around the world to close the gap in Indigenous health inequalities and inequities in Australia and in turn participating in and driving research in disability, ageing and community care in Indigenous communities. Another important contributor is the fact that the university is highly committed to achieving outcomes for their Indigenous students.

What would you say is your passion or motivation?

Working with my Mob, empowering people with a disability to live fully independent lives and witnessing positive change in Indigenous communities.

What are your future goals?

My two main goals are to develop Australia's first Indigenous Disability Research Agenda and to establish partnerships with international health agencies to help close the gap in Indigenous health outcomes.