Suicide Prevention Australia welcomes the release of the Terms of Reference for the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide.
Suicide Prevention Australia CEO Nieves Murray said, “This step signals the official start of the investigation into veteran and serving defence personnel suicide in Australia.
“Sadly, rates of death by suicide are significantly higher for ex-serving men and women than for the general population.
“We encourage a deep dive into the diverse and different challenges faced by both male and female veterans.
“Suicide Prevention Australia has been calling for immediate action on veteran suicide, citing the lack of reliable data and delays with claims processing as two issues requiring urgent attention.
“There is a clear need for change in this area. The Royal Commission and its focus on the critical examination of systematic issues will pave the way for much needed reform and a reduction in suicide deaths among Australian veteran and defence communities.
“Suicide Prevention Australia in consultation with its members looks forward to contributing to the Royal Commission.
“We welcome this step and look forward to working closely with the commissioners,” said Ms Murray.
The inquiry will be led by Mr Nick Kaldas APM, former Deputy Commissioner of the New South Wales Police Force. The other commissioners include; James Douglas, former Queensland Supreme Court Judge and Peggy Brown, Psychiatrist and national mental health policy leader.
The Royal Commission will be accepting submissions until 31 March 2022.
Review the Terms of Reference: https://defenceveteransuicide.royalcommission.gov.au/about/terms-reference