Gayaa Dhuwi Proud Spirit Australia (GDPSA) welcome the release of the Productivity Commission Mental Health Inquiry Report and the Prime Minister’s National Suicide Prevention Advisor’s - Interim Advice today.
We are thankful that the importance of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people has been recognised in both reports as a priority and the recommendations include specific actions to address these needs.
As a priority mental health reform, the Productivity Commission stated Government’s should commit to a more strategic and cross-portfolio approach to mental health that promotes genuine accountability and for the Whole of Government to expedite and resource the development of an implementation plan for the National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing 2017-23. Development of this plan should be led by Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia (action 22.2).
“This confirms the call over decades from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders leaders in the Mental Health and Social and Emotional Well Being area, that it requires an empowering approach to benefit our people and communities, consistent with the Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Declaration” said Tom Brideson, CEO GDPSA.
We are encouraged to see that Interim Advice from Christine Morgan acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as a priority population, and further recognises the need to Strengthen the role and capability of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations in suicide prevention and improve cultural safety within mainstream service providers, to better respond to the needs of Indigenous Australians.
“These reports and their recommendations are timely given the work we are currently undertaking for the Renewal of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Strategy. In early 2021 we will begin the development of the implementation plan for the National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing,” said Mr Brideson.
We were happy to be acknowledged in the Prime Ministers address to the media today where he thanked the work of Gayaa Dhuwi Proud Spirit Australia. GDPSA looks forward to the opportunities these reports present to improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
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