PM Transcripts

Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 15414

World Mental Health Day

Photo of Howard, John

Howard, John

Period of Service: 11/03/1996 to 03/12/2007

More information about Howard, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 10/10/2007

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 15414

World Mental Health Day is an important event on the international calendar and one I am pleased to be able to celebrate with the Mental Health Council of Australia and many other important organisations across Australia including beyondblue and Sane Australia.

Mental health is a major issue in Australia. Nearly one in five Australians will experience a significant mental health problem at some stage in their lives. There are even higher levels of mental health problems among young adults. The impact is felt by families across Australia and touches all parts of our community.

I therefore welcome this opportunity to offer my appreciation to all those people across Australia who spend their lives battling their own mental health issues, caring for someone who experiences mental illness, or working in the many services that offer much needed treatment and support.

The theme for World Mental Health Day 2007 is a focus particularly on the impact of culture and diversity on mental health. We are blessed in Australia to enjoy a vibrant and diverse community which makes for a healthier community.

My government, in partnership with all other Australian governments, has committed unprecedented levels of funding to improve the way we respond to mental health in Australia, including an additional $1.9 billion over five years through the COAG National Action Plan on Mental Health 2006-2011. This will provide funding for a major increase in health services available in the community, new respite services, an increase in the mental health workforce and new programs for community awareness about drugs and mental illness. I am delighted with the initial uptake of many of the new initiatives that are currently being rolled out in every community across Australia. We still have a way to go, but I think we are now starting to make some headway on this very important issue.

I hope all mental health organisations have a successful day today promoting World Mental Health Day and in their often very demanding ongoing work supporting people with mental illness.

Transcript 15414