On Thursday 3rd June, Suicide Prevention Australia’s CEO, Nieves Murray, Board Member and Chair of the Policy Committee, Stan Piperoglou, and Chris Stone, Acting Director of Policy and Government Relations presented to the Public Hearing of Select Committee on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention in Canberra.
Suicide Prevention Australia used the opportunity to discuss our submission to the inquiry earlier in the year and how several of our recommendations had been recognised in the budget, particularly around the establishment of a National Suicide Prevention Office. While the office is a step in the right direction, it needs to go a step further with a Suicide Prevention Act to provide a legislative framework for a national strategic plan on suicide prevention and ultimately hold government agencies accountable.
The Committee asked questions about gaps in the suicide prevention workforce and supporting communities after disasters. As we stated in the submission and during our presentation to the Committee, having a whole-of-government approach is important at any time, but is particularly important during and after disasters. Suicide arises from a complex interaction between many vulnerabilities, risk factors and events in a person’s life. This means actions outside the suicide prevention sphere can have significant roles in reducing suicide deaths.
On behalf of Suicide Prevention Australia and all our members, we thank the Committee for the opportunity to respond to their questions and discuss the importance of a whole-of-government approach to suicide prevention – we look forward to ongoing conversations.
Select Committee on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention includes:
- Chair: Dr Fiona Martin MP, Liberal Party of Australia, Reid NSW
- Deputy Chair: Ms Emma McBride MP, Australian Labor Party, Dobell NSW
- Mr Vince Connelly MP, Liberal Party of Australia, Stirling WA
- Mr Llew O’Brien MP, Liberal National Party of Queensland, Wide Bay QLD
- Mr Tony Pasin MP, Liberal Party of Australia, Barker SA
- Mr Julian Simmonds MP, Liberal National Party of Queensland, Ryan QLD
- Ms Anne Stanley MP, Australian Labor Party, Werriwa NSW
- Ms Susan Templeman MP, Australian Labor Party, Macquarie NSW
For more information
Policy & Government Relations Team, Suicide Prevention Australia