Inquiry into youth suicide prevention underway in Australia
July 26, 2017
Image: NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian
Mental health advocates Nathan Furry and Elizabeth Veasey encourage Yass Valley youths to provide submissions to a state parliamentary inquiry into the current approaches aimed at preventing youth suicide in NSW.
The inquiry was started by the Committee on Children and Young People and announced on July 3.
Yass Valley councillor Furry provided submissions as a carer of someone with mental health issues.
“As a young person, witnessing other young people going through suicidal ideation is incredibly confronting,” Cr Furry said.
“Without some form of known mental health first-aid training to apply in situations where suicide is being considered or attempted, the risk of ideation being acted upon is greatly increased,” he said.
Similarly, Ms Veasey, who is studying mental health, said the inquiry is a great step to ensuring that “we never give up the fight against the horrible set of diseases”.
“There are some flaws in the system, let’s not deny that, but any chance to improve it is a chance that should be taken,” she said.
Ms Veasey said the issues affect not only those who use mental health services, but they also impact on carers, family and friends and co-workers.
Committee chair and Holsworthy MP Melanie Gibbons said the inquiry aimed to better understand the ways in which the issue is being addressed, including what is being done well and what could be improved.
“We know that there is much work being done in NSW aimed at preventing youth suicide,” Ms Gibbons said.
“We’ll be looking at the efforts of government, service providers and schools to prevent the suicide of our young people.”
She said the inquiry will examine the services available “on the ground in local communities, especially regional and rural areas.”
The committee will also inquire about any gaps in suicide-prevention programs across government, data collection about the number of young people committing suicide or attempting suicide, the provision of services to vulnerable and at-risk groups, and the information and training available to service providers working on the front line.
Submissions from the public are invited. The committee is keen to hear from individuals and organisations working to prevent youth suicide.
The closing date for submissions to the inquiry is Thursday, August 31. For further information about the inquiry: www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/children.
First published in the Yass Tribune
For more information about suicide prevention and to seek help:
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