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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 4 Hansard (28 March) . . Page.. 1475..


foreshadow that, when we have dealt with Ms Bresnan's amendment, I will be moving an amendment of my own that echoes, I think, the sentiment of the Assembly in support of mental health workers across our community within the Health Directorate, within Calvary and within the many community groups who work so hard in this area of suicide prevention.

Amendment agreed to.

MR HANSON (Molonglo) (5.53), by leave: I move:

Insert new subparagraph (1)(f):

"(f) the important role that mental health workers and local community groups play in suicide prevention in the ACT; and".

My amendment today reflects the importance and value the Canberra Liberals place on the many mental health workers across our community, within the Health Directorate, within Calvary hospital and in the many local community organisations, working in the area of suicide prevention. Reducing the number of deaths caused by suicide is not merely the job of government; as I have stated, it is a job for the whole community.

We are privileged in the ACT to have passionate workers within the public health system but also paid and unpaid individuals across community organisations working to reduce the number of deaths. I cannot list them all here but I do wish to take this opportunity to acknowledge the large number of organisations that do work in our community beyond the Health Directorate and Calvary and public health workers. They include the ACT Mental Health Consumer Network; the Health Care Consumers Association ACT; Headspace ACT; Lifeline Canberra; the Mental Health Community Coalition ACT; the Mental Health Foundation; OzHelp; Picking up the Peaces; and the Youth Coalition of the ACT.

Some of these organisations receive government funding and some do not. Many do not receive as much as they probably need to address their clients' needs and so they rely on their dedicated staff and volunteers.

With this amendment today—and I am very glad to see the support of both the health minister and Ms Bresnan—we are sending a very clear message that we do acknowledge the hard work of all in the community, both within the public sector and in community organisations, who strive and work in the very difficult area of suicide prevention.

Amendment agreed to.

MS BRESNAN (Brindabella) (5.55): I will just speak very briefly to thank all members for their support of this motion. As Mr Hanson said, it is, unfortunately, rare that we do have everyone agreeing, but this is something that there is not any disagreement on. It is good that we can all agree on how important it is to report on this issue, to address the stigma around suicide and also, by openly discussing the issue, we can make it easier for people to seek help.


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