House debates

Tuesday, 10 September 2019

Statements by Members


1:41 pm

Photo of Zali SteggallZali Steggall (Warringah, Independent) Share this | | Hansard source

There's not a member in this House whose community has not been impacted by the devastating effects of suicide. Communities across the nation have suffered the same sense of loss, grief and confusion whenever one of their own chooses to take their own life. In my electorate of Warringah, our community is impacted like all others, with vulnerable groups, including our young people, middle aged men and our young veterans, most at risk.

This morning Suicide Prevention Australia released their report Turning Points: imagine a world without suicide. The report details that in the last decade suicide rates have increased across the nation. On this, national Suicide Prevention Day 2019, I wish to acknowledge the widespread good work done to reduce the rate of suicide by formal organisations in the health and welfare sector, but also the more informal work of our schools, workplaces and community groups. We need to ensure that small organisations also have access to funding.

In Warringah, I'd like to commend the suicide prevention work of a number of organisations, including Gotcha4Life, Heart On My Sleeve, the Veterans Centre Sydney Northern Beaches, Community Care Northern Beaches, Lifeline and headspace, to name but a few. I also want to commend the Morrison government for their towards zero ambition for suicide rates in Australia and for their recent appointment of a suicide prevention special adviser within the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. All of us need to play our part to help support resilience in our communities and work towards a goal of zero.