Mental ill health is the leading killer of Australians under 45 and the leading cause of disability for all Australians.
But with the biggest health reforms in decades up for negotiation on Monday, mental ill health may be forgotten – unless we act now.
In just 48 hours, the Prime Minister and the leaders of every Australian state and territory will sit down in Canberra to negotiate a new plan for healthcare across the nation.
In their offices across Australia, our state Premiers and territory Chief Ministers are working all weekend in preparation for Monday’s meeting. They are deciding where to push hard, and where to compromise.
We’ve found the office fax number for WA Premier, Colin Barnett
We all want to see reform of our hospitals. But tackling mental health will require more than increasing the number of beds in our hospitals, or changing the source of health funding. More of the same won’t work.
There are solutions. Here’s just one example: there are 30 Government run Headspace centres across Australia. An extra $100million a year would expand capacity in these centres and build an extra 60 across the nation. This alone would double the number of young Australians receiving treatment for mental ill health.
On Monday, the PM will need every Premier on board, so here in WA, Colin Barnett will have huge influence. These decisions are being made in his office right now – let’s fill it with faxes asking him not to come home without mental health care reform:
There must be no health reform without mental health reform. Together we can make sure this silent disease, which half of us will experience in our lifetime, is on the agenda at Monday’s crucial meeting of all levels of Australian Government.
Thanks for all that you do,
We’ve joined forces with Australian of the year, mental health expert Professor Patrick McGorry to call for mental health reform.
Already, tens of thousands of GetUp members have petitioned the Prime Minister and raised $85,000 for the campaign to put our message on TV.
Now it is our state Premiers who hold the keys to reform – click here contact yours now.
The Peak Child Abuse group ASCA today tweeted the news of British PM Gordon Brown’s apology to Australian child migrants acknoweldging it’s crucial to healing
please click the blue link for the UK angle
” http://bit.ly/aoM64h via @ASCAORG > urgent action needed 4 #redress 2 “
Labor and Liberal have failed at federal and state levels to discover a modicum of compassion.
Kevin Rudd was on twitter today congratulating the aussie girl who won olympic gold in the ski aerials, saying gee we’ll have to set up a new ski facility won’t we.
I had the temerity to reply on twitter
” @KevinRuddPM So if I win Gold at the Olympics, you cold fund some community mental health facilities – I’m starting training now Kevin! ”
Taxpayer’s money is used to stage boxing matches (btw I MC martial arts and support boxing ) build footy stadia, freshen up our dullsville foreshore and there’s always lots of taxcash when it comes to self promoting “government” commercials.
For WA’s Barnett/Buswell and the previous Labor wombats to halve compensation for victims of abuse in state care is disgusting.
Meanwhile, mainstream media is so tabloid and dollar driven that these issues are skimmed over or ignored, but gee my colleagues like to have a mass debate over daylight saving or shopping hours – day and night!
Nevertheless I am an eternal optimist ( sometimes a bit jaded ) and have high hopes for activism and advocacy on the net through media like this blog and on twitter.
So please join in, add a comment, ask a few questions of your local “member” and raise your voice for those who’ve already died as well as those currently in dire need.
The state government, meanwhile has announced that victims who are expected to die before christmas will get their meagre share of the halved compo package earlier than the others – really, it’s in the letter
It IS life or death – and for far too many of us.
The “rollout” of payments to West Australians abused in State care has begun and incredibly, it has added more grief to the already considerable insult to the survivors.
We’ll hear in coming weeks on this blog some of the voices who are affected by this cold and heartless administration.
Pasted below the West story is a copy of one of the advisory letters from the Government Redress office.
from JESSICA STRUTT at The West Australian
Only about 100 of almost 6000 applicants to the Redress scheme will today receive details of their ex-gratia payments as the first round of offers are made by the Government to former State wards.
The State Government is expected to face a backlash when it reveals the four categories of payments, more than 10 months after applications to the scheme closed.
A newsletter that applicants will start receiving this week says that, according to early assessments, about half of all applicants who detailed claims of abuse and/or neglect in State care will be eligible for the two lowest amounts available of $5000 and $13,000.
please read the full article here
WA premier colin barnett and treasurer troy buswell ( caps and honorifics are not deserved ) should both hang their heads, refusing to overturn their halving meagre compensation for victims of state abuse.
This Govt spends 10s of millions on unnecessary and unwanted regional projects, but cuts funds to traumatized state wards.
SHAME barnett and buswell, SHAME
Remember this heartless pair at the next election.
Back to the old voting maxim…ABC – Anyone But Colin!
This Govt could not run a chook raffle.
Meanwhile the victims’ abuse has been acknowledged in Canberra as reported below.
ABC NEWS – Australia says sorry for ‘great evil’
Monday, November 16, 2009
By Online parliamentary correspondent Emma Rodgers
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has given an emotional apology to the country’s Forgotten Australians, many of whom have gathered at Parliament House in Canberra today.
To view on a PC/Mac please use this link
To view on a mobile please use this link
from @perthtones’ iPhone
*Please share this
WHEN: Friday 6 November 2009
WHERE: Fremantle Town Hall
Fully licenced bar & supper available
Travel back in time, dust off your cool threads and get crazy for a cause at the Duck and Cover Hop – Fremantle’s first and finest retro radioactive ball.
TIckets: $30 unwaged / $40 waged / $60 solidarity *all tickets include supper
BOOKINGS ESSENTIAL! Book here
For more information:
All money raised goes to the Anti-NuclearAlliance of Western Australia, Conservation Council of Western Australia & Fremantle Anti-Nuclear Group
Sponsors: Fremantle City Council, Fremantle Festival & Little Creatures
5 King William Street, Bayswater WA 6053
Ph/Fax: (08) 9271 8786
Alison Xamon MLC
MEMBER FOR THE EAST METROPOLITAN REGION
P.O. BOX 104, MAYLANDS, WESTERN AUSTRALIA 6931
PHONE (08) 9275 7474 – FAX (08) 9275 7574
The W.A. Mental Health Minister has told Parliament he doesn’t know what cuts to staff and services have been made in his portfolio as those behind the cuts of at last 13%,Troy Buswell and Colin Barnett, talk shopping hours.
mp3 audio cut 3 lays out the spin and distraction being put out by the Premier & Treasurer and runs 20 secs
Greens MLC Alison Xamon last night asked the Minister what cuts to staff and resources had been made and what cuts are coming. The reply was to the effect that it would take “some time” to provide answers.
mp3 audio Alison on his reaction and runs 25 secs
Ms Xamon also moved an Urgency Motion, supported by the Opposition, calling on the Government to spell out its plans for the sector.
mp3 Audio Ms Xamon explaining that the Mental Health Minister has little Idea what his Premier and Treasurer have done and have planned – runs 23 secs
Organisers of the midday rally to overturn the dedly cuts say they’ve been approached by the Minister, asking if he can speak to them as they deliver a petition to the Lower House.
mp3 Audio Alison on people in the public and private sector being fed up with spin and lack of answers to urgent questions – runs 22 secs
It will be worthwhile sending reporters and cameras to the midday rally to see what happens, and to interview the Auditor General who’s due to issue a report on the prformance of the Mental Health Sector around 1pm.
mp3 audio Alison lashing the rush to make cuts before the AG’s report is handed down, and the lack of consultation with stakeholders, staff, service providers and those who use mental health services – runs 13 secs
There will be people from public and private groups like, the HSU, WAAMH, MHC, COMIC, RUAH etc, as well as the Minister, Shadow Minister, Alison Xamon, Many of my dear 6PR listeners and Twitter friends will be there too because this is life or death for many west australians and the damage will be almost impossible to undo.
IF YOU CAN’T MAKE THE NOON RALLY
please call talkback radio TODAY ( 6PR 922 11 882 ) You can also email Colin Barnett at firstname.lastname@example.org or Treasurer Troy Buswell at Minister.Buswell@dpc.wa.gov.au or call the Premier’s office today on 9222 9475, Troy Buswell’s office is 9222 9111 ( contact details are from the public WA Government website )
Alison Xamon –
MLC for East Metropolitan
“At midday today a small group of our most vulnerable people will gather as they do each month to ask the Government for a small measure of justice that has been denied for decades and then cut in half.”
They are the last few members of the Redress activists keeping a monthly vigil, those West Australians who were officially acknowledged to have been abused while in State care, and many more who were removed from families her and abroad against their will or without consent of parents.
They will gather outside state Parliament at Midday in the faint hope that the Barnett Government will re-instate the full amount of compensation awarded to them, and ensure no more victims die waiting for the mostly inadequate funds
Only a few months ago a 50 year old woman eligible for Redress, but still waiting for its meagre justice, died( click here for the ABC story of one victim who died just 2 months ago…still waiting )The money would have helped pay for her funeral, but even that late comfort was denied to her.
The Greens MLC asks “How many more people will die waiting – waiting for the full amount of Redress funds to be re-instated – waiting again once money’s been allocated for it to actually be paid.”