Hosted by radio personality Dylan Adler from LGBTI station JOY94.9, the show is a panel discussion featuring same-sex attracted and sex and gender diverse young people from around Victoria talking about a different topic each week. The topics are wide-ranging, dealing with everything from coming out and depression to transitioning and religion.
In the first half of each episode the young people on the panel have free reign to say whatever they want about the topic, then in the second half older members of the LGBTI community and experts in a relevant field join the discussion.
Producer Andy McNamara from Bent TV told the Star Observer he was spurred on to make the show after reading about shockingly high rates of suicide amongst same-sex attracted and sex and gender diverse young people.
“I’m really proud of the youth for getting up there and talking about the topic and saying whatever they want, giving a voice to group that don’t have a voice all that often,” McNamara said.
McNamara said they worked closely with youth community groups in Melbourne and around regional Victoria to encourage young people to talk about their experiences on the show.
“It’s a bit of a challenge for some of the youth to get on TV. One of the episodes is ‘Genderqueer’, so some of these kids feel uncomfortable in all sorts of places in society. So to get them comfortable and confident on TV was a bit of a challenge,” he explained.
“We do a brainstorm with the kids before each episode, so we spend 20 minutes thinking through every aspect of the topic and getting their heads ready so when they get on they can get going right away.”
Queer Young Thing premieres on Channel 31 at 10pm on Monday, September 2.