11 Dec 2013
The National Mental Health Commission is pleased to release A Contributing Life: the 2013 National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention.
The 2013 Report Card highlights the issues people living with a mental illness face when they also live with a substance use problem or find themselves in prison, and highlights opportunities for recovery through education, keeping connected, having access to peer workers and early intervention, and supports to avoid suicide. It also reports on progress since the release of the Commission's first Report Card last November.
The launch of the 2013 Report Card in Sydney was a fantastic event, and we would like to thank all of those that joined us on the day, particularly our VIPs who shared their stories as part of the Report Card.
A Contributing Life: the 2013 National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention is available on the National Mental Health Commission website – both as a downloadable PDF and as an interactive website.
We encourage you to read it and share it broadly within your network.
Video highlights of the launch
Watch a short video of the launch of the 2013 National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention. This includes comments from all National Mental Health Commissioners.
Lived experience videos as a resource
As part of the development of the 2013 National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, the Commission has developed a range of videos of people sharing their lived experience of mental health problems and suicide, including family members, support people, and champions within the community.
We encourage you to view and share these videos and to also use them in your work.
Join us in calling for an end to seclusion and restraint
The National Mental Health Commission is urging Australians from all walks of life to join us in calling for an end to the seclusion and restraint of children and adults with mental health problems.
In 2005, all Australian Governments agreed to act to reduce and where possible to eliminate the use of seclusion and restraint. Despite this, seclusion and restraint is raised time and time again as an issue that people want something done about. It is raised by individuals and their families, and it is raised by staff, service providers and policy makers
Recognising that 45 per cent of Australians will experience a mental health problem in their lifetime – and that the true beneficiaries of reduced seclusion and restraint are people living with mental health problems and those who support them – we invite you to sign up to the declaration below and be part of driving change.
I believe that seclusion and restraint of people with mental health problems is a human rights issue.
I believe that the use of seclusion and restraint is not therapeutic.
I believe that the use of seclusion and restraint is distressing to everyone involved.
I believe that seclusion and restraint is an uncomfortable topic that we need to talk a lot more about.
I believe it is a failure in care and a sign of a system under stress.
I believe that reducing seclusion and restraint reduces injury to people, including staff.
I know that there are alternatives to seclusion and restraint. I believe that staff including nurses, doctors, peer workers, allied health workers, police, ambulance officers, community sector workers, wardens and others must receive adequate support, resourcing and training that support these alternatives.
I believe we need consistent, national data that gives an accurate and meaningful account of what’s really going on.
I believe all Australian governments must take responsibility for acting on that data and addressing the use of seclusion and restraint, and reporting on progress.
I believe that when seclusion and restraint happens the circumstances that lead to it must be talked about and reviewed so that better outcomes can be achieved next time for all involved.
I believe we all have a part to play in calling for change.
You can download A3 and A4 size copies of the Declaration from the Commission website which you can sign or add your organisation's logo to.
We encourage you to share the Declaration with friends, family and colleagues and show your support by displaying your Declaration around your home or office, or online (a suggested social media post has also been developed).
Seeking mental health leaders - still time to nominate
A brief reminder that there is still time to submit a nomination for the National Mental Health Commission' s leadership and development program. Nominations are easy to complete and open to anyone that might be interested.
We are seeking nominations of Australians with lived experience of mental health issues, either as a person living with mental illness or as a primary family member or other significant support person, to work with and contribute to our mission.
Successful nominees will be offered a range of opportunities including:
- Contributing at a national level to mental health policy advice and reporting associated with the Commission’s mandate. This may include co-chairing or membership of advisory groups to the Commission.
- Individual mentoring and participation in a national leadership development program. Around 10 people will be selected for the development program.
This is a fantastic opportunity to contribute to the Commission’s work which aims to help all Australians achieve the best possible mental health and wellbeing.
Nominations close 5pm AEDT Friday 20 December 2013.
The Melbourne Hearing Voices Declaration
Prof. Allan Fels, Chair of the National Mental Health Commission signed and formally endorsed The Melbourne Hearing Voices Declaration’ at the World Hearing Voices Congress on Friday 22 November 2013.
The Declaration, which has been developed by people with a lived experience of hearing voices from Australia, UK and Europe, aims to build support within the mental health system for a more open and recovery oriented approach to hearing voices.
The Melbourne Hearing Voices Declaration was signed by 55 organisations who have embraced the opportunity to publically demonstrate their support for the consumer leadership movement and the importance of engaging in a productive way with the experience of hearing voices.