Australian Psychologists are today welcoming the Australian Government’s action on suicide prevention and mental health.
Australia’s peak body for psychologists, the Australian Psychological Society (APS), today revealed that the Australian Government has invested $64 million in suicide prevention and mental health initiatives.
APS President, Ros Knight, congratulated the Minister for Heath, the Hon Greg Hunt, on his swift response to initial advice from the National Suicide Prevention Adviser, Ms Christine Morgan.
“This latest example of the Australian Government’s commitment to implementing a new approach to suicide prevention is to be commended.”
Ms Morgan, who was appointed in July 2019, has outlined the need to use the knowledge of lived experience, to intervene early, focus on specific at-risk groups, strengthen families and communities, and ensure that all government services are working to reduce suicide.
“The APS has been pleased to see Minister Hunt and Ms Morgan’s support for community-based projects. The APS supports the government’s efforts to improve suicide prevention services and address Australia’s mental health crisis,” she said.
Today’s funding announcement comprises the following elements:
- $13.4 million in 2020-21 to extend the National Suicide Prevention Trial sites for a further year
- $10 million over two years from 2020-21 for an initial expansion of the StandBy Support After Suicide Service
- ·$7 million over two years from 2020-21 to expand the Way Back and other programs to increase the coverage of aftercare services in Australia
- $4.6 million in 2020-21 boost to investment in peer support for young people through organisations such as the Raise Foundation and ReachOut
- $4.4 million from 2020-21 for the headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation to deliver suicide prevention training and education sessions in schools through the Schools Suicide Prevention Activities Program
- $1.5 million to Lifeline Australia and $500,000 to Kids Helpline in 2019-20
- $1 million additional in 2019-20 for the NMHC to support ongoing reform in child and youth mental health
If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, know that there are many people who will gladly assist you if you let them know you have a problem.
If you’re not ready to talk to anyone but are looking for strategies to help you cope with your feelings right now, here are some great resources: https://suicideprevention.com.au/helpful-articles/
If you don’t feel that you can talk to friends or family, there are many services available in Australia to support you. They are as follows:
- Suicide Help Line – Lifeline 24 hour crisis support -13 11 14
- Hold On To Life @ the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation (24/7) – 1800 HOLDON (1800 465 366)
- Suicide Callback – 1300 659 467 (available 24/7)
- Blue Knot Helpline:
- For adults survivors of trauma and abuse – 1300 657 380
- National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service –1800 737 732
- SANE Australia -For information, guidance, and referrals to manage mental health concerns – 1800 187 263