Trauma Conference 2015

Austerity, Poverty and Psychological Trauma
Stirling Campus Spring Banner

Thursday 28 May 2015, University of Stirling, Stirling


  • May 28 2015 Conference date

Austerity, Poverty, Psychological Trauma Conference Stirling 2015

‌The concept of exposure to a traumatic event(s) is now recognised as a contributing factor to the development of a variety of mental health issues. Research supports that major risk factors for mental health issues are poverty, poor education, unemployment, social isolation and adverse life experiences. Living within an environment of deprivation and poverty can increase the exposure and therefore vulnerability to psychological trauma through exposure to traumatic experiences.

To address the treatment and support needs of survivors of trauma within our services requires heightened awareness of the concept, and consequences of ‘Trauma’ across the lifespan.

This conference brings together researchers, clinicians and community action volunteers to share knowledge, insight and experience that address the direct impact on individuals, families and communities exposed to austerity and its consequences. Additionally it will provide a forum for discussion on the future direction of psychological trauma-informed care in our society.


NHS Forth Valley logoThank you for your interest in this conference. 

People's experience of trauma has a profound impact on their lives and the society they live in. It affects their quality of life, their chances of success in education, their employment potential and the lives of their families.

This conference will present growing evidence of the harmful short and long term effects of poverty and deprivation on individuals, families and communities. It will provide a platform to discuss and explore the development of support structures attuned to future need. Additionally, it will provide a forum for discussing the implementation of trauma informed care and how this awareness can be embedded within our culture and society.

Conference information

This conference takes place on Thursday 28 May 2015.  Registration will take place in the Atrium, Andrew Miller Building at our Stirling Campus.  It will open with registration at 09.00 and close at 16.15h. Maps and directions to Stirling Campus can be found here.

Confirmed speakers:  

  • Jamie Hepburn, MSP, Minister for Sport, Health Improvement and Mental Health
  • David Duke, Chief Executive, Street Soccer Scotland
  • Prof Bob Hart, Stirling Management School, University of Stirling
  • Prof Brigid Daniel, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Stirling
  • Prof Jayne Donaldson, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling
  • Janet Hamill, NHS Tayside
  • Dr Mairi Harper, Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling
  • Dr Ruth Jepson, Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research & Policy
  • Lesley Murray, Kilsyth Community Foodbank
  • Dr Brodie Paterson, University of Stirling
  • Dr Tony Robertson, Centre for Population Health Sciences
  • Jennifer Young, NHS Forth Valley & University of Stirling

The conference will seek to explore the relationship between the current climate of austerity, poverty and psychological trauma. There will be a series of workshops based around the following themes:

  • Public Health
  • Trauma-informed Staff Support (Workforce)
  • Recovering Communities 
  • Impact on Children and Families

This conference is for people interested in, or affected by poverty. This may be of particular interest to people working in the following:

  • NHS;
  • Social Services/Care Providers;
  • Criminal justice Services;
  • Scottish Prison Service;
  • Probation Services
  • Academics with an interest in this area
  • Community Action Groups
  • Charity Groups
  • Housing Services
  • Policy Advisors
  • Education/Child Welfare
  • Advocacy Services

and will give you a chance to explore key issues of trauma and trauma care.

The fee for this conference is £80 and payment should be made through our online shop.  A limited number of £20 reduced rate places are available for undergraduate students.

Photos of speakers will be taken on the day; please make our conference team aware on the day if you do not wish to be included in any photos.

If you wish to tweet that you have a place at this conference, please use #Trauma15  Thank you.

Please note that it will not be possible to provide refunds for delegates who did not attend.

Break-out sessions and Lectures


Debt, austerity and health

Prof Bob Hart, Emeritus Professor, University of Stirling

Download the Debt, austerity and health presentation from #Trauma15


Break-out sessions:

Public Health

Generating evidence in public health: A case-study of austerity & health
Dr Ruth Jepson, Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research & Policy with
Dr Tony Robertson, Centre for Population Health Sciences

Download the Public Health presentation from #Traum15

Trauma-informed staff support (Workforce)

Reconceptualising the boundaries between ‘deserving’ and ‘undeserving’ poverty: the benefits of reflective practice for frontline professionals
Dr Nicola Cunningham, University of Stirling

In the Front Line:  Trauma-informed Staff Support
Dr Brodie Paterson, University of Stirling  Download the In the Front Line: Trauma-informed Staff Support presentation
Sandy McComish, University of Stirling

Recovering Communities 

Enabling not rescuing: lessons from a community foodbank
Dr Mairi Harper, University of Stirling
Jennie Young, University of Stirling & NHS Forth Valley with Lesley Murray, Kilsyth Community Foodbank

Download the Recovering Communities Food Bank presentation from #Trauma15

Impact on Children and Families

Prof Brigid Daniel, University of Stirling
Janet Hamill, NHS Tayside

Download Prof Brigid Daniel's Austerity, mental health and child neglect presentation from #Trauma15

Download Janet Hamill's Impact on Children & Families presentation from #Trauma15 


Jamie Hepburn, MSP, Minister for Sport, Health Improvement and Mental Health

Jamie Hepburn was educated at Hyndland Secondary and the University of Glasgow, graduating with a degree in Politics and History.

He served as National Convener of the SNP’s student and youth wings. Jamie Hepburn was MSP for Central Scotland between 2007 and 2011 and has been MSP for Cumbernauld & Kilsyth since 2011. Jamie was appointed as Minister for Sport, Health Improvement & Mental Health on November 21, 2014.

Jamie lives in his constituency with his wife, Julie, and two children.

Twitter:  @jamiehepburn

David Duke, Chief Executive, Street Soccer (Scotland)

David Duke is founder and Chief Executive of Street Soccer (Scotland), a non-profit social enterprise that uses football to help create positive change in the lives of socially disadvantaged adults and young people.

At just 34, he has experienced first-hand the problems that face the people that his organisation works with and helps on a daily basis.  That alone makes him one of the best-placed people to inspire, deliver and advise on social inclusion programmes that use sport as its catalyst.

In 2003 he was living on the streets of Glasgow and had reached a low point in his life. Six years later, in 2009, David founded Street Soccer (Scotland) to address, face on, issues including health, social exclusion and education. Now, in 2015, Street Soccer (Scotland) delivers a wide range of programmes across the length and breadth of Scotland to thousands of participants.

David works closely with local and national Government, sports governing bodies, mental health charities, housing associations and professional football clubs and is also Global Ambassador for the Homeless World Cup organisation. He was named as The Sunday Times ‘Change Maker’ of the Year in 2012 and holds an Honorary Doctorate from Queen Margaret University for his work in this field.

Twitter:  @MrDavidDuke and @StreetSoccerSCO

Dr Nicola Cunningham, University of Stirling

Nicola Cunningham is currently Macmillan Lecturer and Programme Lead for the Graduate Diploma (Welfare Benefits Advice) programme. This is a joint collaboration between Macmillan Cancer Support and the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling. The programme, drawing from her background in sociology, social policy and health, is designed to equip health, welfare, social care and information/advice professionals and related volunteers with the knowledge and skills they need to improve information, advice, support and service delivery for people affected by cancer and long term conditions. The programme explores patient experiences around key policy themes: poverty, health, inequalities, theorising disability, employment and discrimination, vocational rehabilitation, social security and welfare reform. The programme is innovative in both design and online delivery, attracting a strong cohort of students each year from all over the UK.

Recently published work explores patient experiences; treatment decision-making in cancer care; the importance of relationships in the experience of cancer; the efficacy of patient-centred models of infertility care; transitions beyond infertility treatment and related requirements for supportive care; welfare reform and the benefits of reflective practice; embodied welfare: disability and welfare reform.   

Twitter:  @NCunningham6

Prof Brigid Daniel, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Stirling

Brigid Daniel, MA (Hons), PhD, CQSW, is Professor of Social Work and Deputy Head of School in the Faculty of Social Sciences at Stirling University. She is head of the Social Work subject group which delivers undergraduate and post-graduate qualifying social work programmes as well as a range of CPD courses. Brigid is an academic advisor to WithScotland – a national project that aims to enhance research and practice in child welfare and protection in Scotland. Her research interests and publications are in the areas of child development, children’s resilience, work with fathers and child neglect.

Prof Jayne Donaldson, Head of Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling

Professor Jayne Donaldson took the post as the Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport at the University of Stirling in September 2014.  She is a well-recognised leader of "nursing and healthcare" and is widely cited on nurse education issues such as practice learning. 

Jayne has a keen research interest in the quality of patient experience within healthcare, and the theoretical development of the nature and promotion of compassionate care through clinical leadership. 

Jayne was recently appointed a Guest Editor for Nurse Education Today, on a special issue of compassionate care within healthcare.  Jayne’s policy and practice interests include public health, early years, and the impact of loneliness and social isolation particularly in older adults on their health.    

Twitter:  @jayne_donaldson

Janet Hamill, NHS Tayside

Janet Hamill (RMN, BN, PG Cert., MSc) is currently Nurse Team Leader for Team 2/ New Beginnings, Tayside Substance Misuse Service, based in Dundee.  Janet has worked primarily within adult drug treatment services but has also worked within a Social Work team and with CAMHS.  Janet also had time seconded to the University of Stirling within the Mental Health team.

Her current role combines clinical practice and leadership and she is also strategic co-lead for Cairn Centre Hub in Dundee which is an innovative partnership promoting recovery from substance misuse.

Janet is a professional member of With Scotland.   Janet's interests include meaningful engagement and collaboration with families and carers.

Dr Mairi Harper, Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling

Mairi Harper completed a PhD in Psychology at the University of Stirling in 2010, returning to take up the post of Lecturer in Mental Health in December 2014.

Mairi's research interests are traumatic bereavement and how families cope with the death of a child.

Twitter:  @MairiHarper

Prof Bob Hart, Stirling Management School, University of Stirling

Bob Hart is an Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Stirling.  Has been Professor of Economics at the University of Stirling since 1986.  Previous posts: Lecturer in Economics and Statistics, University of Aberdeen (1969-72); Lecturer in Economics, University of Leeds (1973-74);

Senior Lecturer in Economics, University of Strathclyde (1976-79), Visiting Associate Professor, McMaster University (1979/80), Senior Research Fellow, International Institute of Management in Berlin (1980-86). 

Until recently, and for over a decade, he was Managing Editor of the Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scotland's leading Economics Journal.  He has been Head of the Economics on a number of occasions at Stirling and, for a period of 3.5 years in the early 1990s he was Dean of the Stirling Management School.  

He researches in labour market economics, with special interests in labour costs, working time, human capital, the Japanese economy, business cycle fluctuations in the labour market, and the British engineering labour market between 1920 and 1970. 

He has published numerous articles in economics journals and five monographs.  He holds several outside Fellowships.

Dr Ruth Jepson, Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research & Policy

Ruth Jepson is Deputy Director of the Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research & Policy.  Ruth has been involved in many different aspects of public health research for over 20 years.  After completing her MSc in the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of Edinburgh, she spent over 10 years in the Cochrane Collaboration as a Review Group Co-ordinator and as a reviewer. She also worked at the NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination in York University. She returned to the University of Edinburgh to undertake her PhD on developing a measure of informed choice in cancer screening.  Prior her role in SCPHRP, she was at the of Stirling University where she was Co-Director of the Centre for Population and Public Health and Lead for the Physical Activity and Diet Research Programme.

Her methodological expertise is in systematic reviews and evaluation research (both qualitative and quantitative). Her current research interests are around promoting physical activity, particularly in the outdoor environment. She has a number of grants and studentships in this area and has published a number of peer-reviewed and non-peer reviewed reports.  She is particularly interested in undertaking research in partnership with service providers and users.

Twitter:  @SCPHRP

Prof Margaret Maxwell, Deputy Director, NMAHP Research Unit

Margaret Maxwell is Professor of Health Services and Mental Health Research and Deputy Director of the Chief Scientist Office funded Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professions Research Unit (NMAHP RU) at the University of Stirling. Within the NMAHPRU she is Programme lead for Quality and Delivery of Care research. She was Head of the Scottish Primary Care Mental Health Research and Development Programme from 2006-2011. She has been involved in health services research for over 25 years, focusing primarily on quality and delivery of primary care services and the management of common mental health problems, including the promotion of self- care and social interventions as management strategies. 

For the past ten years, she has been involved in several European research collaborations tackling suicide and depression through the: Preventing Depression Through Networking in the EU (PREDI-NU) project;  the Optimising Suicide Prevention Interventions (OSPI) project; and the European Alliance Against Depression (EAAD) project. These projects include delivering training in suicide and depression awareness and management to a range of healthcare professionals (including community nurses and pharmacists), and the development of on-line self-help and CBT interventions. Other interests include the assessment and management of depression in people living with long term conditions (multi-morbidity).

Lesley Murray, Kilsyth Community Foodbank

Lesley Murray is the founder of Kilsyth Community Food Bank and Action to Recover Communities.

Dr Brodie Paterson, Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling

Brodie Paterson is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Stirling.

He is an experienced practitioner and researcher with degrees in psychology, education, sociology and social policy. He is an expert advisor to government and private industry in UK, Ireland and elsewhere on violence reduction in health, social care and education.

Brodie pioneered restrictive physical intervention reduction in the UK and internationally following a series of groundbreaking UK research studies that identified the risks to services users and staff associated with their use.

He is an experienced expert witness in cases involving injury to staff or services users / patients in scenarios involving death or injury (100 + cases) in both civil and criminal proceedings.

Brodie has a record of 100 + publications on violence reduction and significant record of completed projects.  He is Chair of the European Network for Training in the Management of Aggression.

Dr Tony Robertson, Centre for Population Health Sciences

Tony Robertson is Research Fellow & Working Group Lead with the Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research & Policy, University of Edinburgh

Tony studied Behavioural Ecology at degree and PhD level before changing his focus to human health and social epidemiology in 2010 when he joined the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, the University of Glasgow on a Career Development Fellowship.

In September 2013 Tony moved to SCPHRP as the Research Fellow and Lead for the Working Age/Adult Life Working Group. Tony’s work focuses on trying to better understand the mechanisms linking socioeconomic circumstances and health across the life course to help reduce health inequalities. This includes investigating the biological pathways between socioeconomic circumstances and health; investigating peoples’ experiences and understanding of the causes and consequences of health inequalities and working with community organisations and programmes trying to reduce health inequalities.   

Twitter:  @tonyrobertson82@SCPHRP

Prof Angela Wallace, Executive Nurse Director, NHS Forth Valley

Professor Angela Wallace is the Executive Nurse Director for NHS Forth Valley and an Honorary Professor in the School of Health Sciences at the University of Stirling. 

As the Professional Head of Nursing and Midwifery, she is committed to improving patient care and experience through supporting nurses and midwives.  Professor Wallace is also the Executive Lead in Forth Valley for Child Protection, Patient Safety and Person-Centredness. 

Twitter: @Profawallace

Jennifer Young, University of Stirling and NHS Forth Valley

Jennie Young is a Teaching Fellow (secondee) with the University of Stirling and works clinically with NHS Forth Valley in the Behavioural Psychotherapy Department as a Trauma Therapist.  Having spent a 30-year career in mental health care she is seeing that the impact of austerity on people’s mental health, and the damage on an individual and community level, is more prevalent than it’s ever been.

She is also a Trustee at Kilsyth Community Food Bank.

Contact information Lynne Black School of Health Sciences University of Stirling
Stirling Campus
R G Bomont Building
01786 466345
© University of Stirling FK9 4LA Scotland UK • Telephone +44 1786 473171 • Scottish Charity No SC011159
Portal Logon