I cannot recall how many Royal Commissions and Senate inquiries have
been held into Mental Health. Millions of dollars have been wasted and
nothing has changed.

This edition of the newsletter covers the interim report from the Victorian
Royal Commission. I am appalled by the response by Victoria’s Premier
Daniel Andrews that calls for the national levy. I don’t agree with that as
governments have saved themselves billions of dollars by shutting down
Mental Health Institutions.

The previous edition of this newsletter covered testimony from the
Victorian Royal Commission. All exposed deficiencies in the mental health
system. White Wreath has long advocated the need to coordinate mental
health policy between the Federal Government and the various State
Governments. The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) should have
mental health listed on its agenda for the next meeting on March 13. To quote
Productivity Commissioner Stephen King when he released his draft report
on health last year, “Mental ill health and suicide are costing Australia $180
billion a year and services are failing to meet “community expectations”
calling for major reforms to ensure people get the right type of help when
they need it. Too many people still avoid treatment because of stigma and
too many people fall through the gaps in the system because the services
are not available or suitable.”

Fanita Clark