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Only top-to-toe change will fix mental health care

Media Release
Penny Wright 9 Oct 2013

The Federal Government must lead a drastic overhaul of the mental health system to ensure every Australian can access quality care, says Australian Greens spokesperson for mental health Senator Penny Wright.

"Without a root and branch reform of mental health in this country, thousands of Australians will continue to miss out on life-saving mental health services," Senator Wright said.

In a speech to be delivered on World Mental Health Day tomorrow to members of the Mental Health Council, Senator Wright will call for multi-partisan commitment to fixing Australia's growing mental health crisis.

"One in every two Australians will experience a mental health challenge at some point in their life, but thousands won't get the help they need because mental health is chronically underfunded.

"The lack of adequate mental health care creates a huge economic burden, estimated to be as high as $20 billion a year.

"Australia has the resources to be a world leader when it comes to mental health services. The Australian Greens want to see Federal government show leadership and adopt evidence-based solutions, including boosting investment to targeted, community-based services.

"Tony Abbott's Coalition has been a disappointment so far with only a very small election commitment and then scrapping mental health as a stand-alone portfolio.

"But it is not too late - this parliament must commit to transformational change in the mental health system so every Australian can get the care they need."

 

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