Deputy Public Guardian: Christina Thompson
Christina Thompson is currently acting as Deputy Public Guardian for Queensland where she manages and is responsible for the organisational performance of three Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) service delivery business units including Guardianship, Legal Services and Investigations, and Community Visiting and Advocacy. Additionally, Christina supports the Public Guardian in leading OPG with over 300 staff, including a remote workforce of community visitors and administering a $25 million budget.
Christina brings a lot of experience and passion to OPG in upholding the human rights of vulnerable people. Before starting he role with OPG, Christina was the Deputy Public Trustee and Guardian in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), which remains her substantive position. During this time, Christina was instrumental in establishing supported decision-making into the daily activities of guardians in the ACT ensuring they promote the rights of people with impaired decision-making to make their own decisions with the support they need.
In the years prior to joining the ACT Public Trustee and Guardian, Christina has actively worked to protect and promote the rights and interests of vulnerable people through her various roles including:
- leading a major service reform project for ACT’s mental health, justice, health and alcohol and drug services to improve the reach and through-care of mental health services in the community
- establishing the role of Senior Advocate, Mental Health and Forensic for the Public Advocate of the ACT to provide oversight to both the public mental health and the forensic systems and accountability for the way they treated and related to vulnerable people
- leading research into the factors affecting the re-admission of people into psychiatric units
- creating a forum for the various isolated Official Visitors (Community Visitors) to meet and support each other, culminating in legislative change to co-locate all Official Visitors.
Christina has qualifications in leadership, investigations, and several in psychology, including a Master of Applied Psychology. As a Senior Psychologist with extensive clinical and forensic experience Christina has provided psychological interventions and psychological court reports in both private practice and public service. This includes for young people in crisis situations, coping with mental illnesses and in youth detention centres, and for adults in psychiatric units, living in the community and on remand or in prison.
Psychological work in a forensic setting has been a particular interest for Christina, providing opportunity to give consideration, and translate into policy, the impact of trauma on the behaviour of offenders. Trauma backgrounds often create personal vulnerabilities that offenders inevitably mask through their offending behaviour. Christina firmly believes that to successfully address offending behaviour, we must first understand the person’s traumatic experience as a victim.