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Mental Health Foundation says 'significant omissions' in major inquiry

The Mental Health Foundation says there are "significant omissions" in the Government's mental health and addiction inquiry, but welcomed the report.

The report was released today, finding the system does not respond adequately to people in serious distress, the approach to suicide is "patchy and under-resourced" and teachers and school counsellors are overwhelmed by the number of students in distress.

Read and watch more about the report here

Chief executive Shaun Robinson said the inquiry called for a number of radical changes and it created "a real opportunity to create lasting transformational change".

"We will not allow mental health to be neglected any longer," he said. 

However, the foundation said there were "significant omissions" in the report.

The foundation said there was no clear analysis why past recommendations had failed, that there was ambiguity in the interpretations of recommendations and a lack of focused recommendations directed at the mental health of people with the poorest outcomes. 

It also said recommendations around suicide preventions were not comprehensive or directive "and do not seem to represent the experiences of people who have been suicidal and/or made suicide attempts".

"All recommendations are equally weighted without acknowledgment that many of them, such as decriminalising drugs, will be extremely difficult to implement," the foundation said. 

Despite what the foundation says was omitted, Mr Robinson said it was pleasing to see the strong emphasis for the need of a major paradigm shift towards supporting people.

The foundation acknowledged the report promoting a new commission and agency to lead change, the emphasis on culturally-responsive services and the promotion of wellbeing for people at all stages of life. 

Those in the sector are calling on the Government to act now on its recommendations, with services already stretched. Source: 1 NEWS