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Our Role

We provide independent reports and advice to the community and government on what is working and what is not working in mental health and suicide prevention in Australia.

We must think differently about mental health, to see mental wellbeing as important to the individual, their family, support people and community. This sees services not as separate elements to be used when needed. It sees that the interconnections between services, families, employers and co-workers, health providers, teachers and friends, together improve mental wellbeing and a sense of a life well lived.

The Commission works across all areas that promote mental health and prevent mental illness and suicide – not just government and not just health, but education, housing, employment, human services and social support, so that all Australians achieve the best possible mental health and wellbeing.

What we do

We consider the mental health and suicide prevention system through the lens of consumers, carers, families and support people to provide rich, evidence-based reports and advice that better reflect the experiences of people, and: 

  • Enable a whole-of-life and person-centred view
  • Provide a focus on groups of people in the community with high levels of need and/or limited access to services
  • Encompass the continuum of mental health and wellbeing
  • Draw attention to interface issues between sectors and services
  • Apply an evidence-based approach.

We engage with stakeholders, consumers, carers, family members and the community to hear first‐hand people’s experience with the mental health system.  We draw on data, indicators and frameworks, as well as personal accounts, to inform an assessment of whether progress is being achieved in the implementation of mental health reforms and the impact of any changes.

We increase accountability and transparency in mental health through the provision of independent reports and advice to the Australian Government and the community.  By highlighting the activities that affect mental health and suicide prevention in Australia, we inform policy and practice to make a positive change in the mental health and wellbeing of all Australians.

What we do not do

We do not get involved in individual cases or advocate for individual people or groups. Instead we are an advocate for system improvement and better accountability.

We are not a fund holding body. We do not provide services, grant programs or funding for unsolicited projects or campaigns.

Statement of Expectations and Statement of Intent

The Statement of Expectations outlines the Prime Minister and Minister for Health’s expectations of the Commission’s role, responsibilities and activities. The Statement of Intent outlines how the Commission will meet these.