The Orygen Institute panel discussion at the end of July was a timely contribution to the discussion on what is needed to reduce self-harm and suicide among young people.
The week before, data from the Australian Study of Mental Health and Wellbeing survey spotlighted the worsening state of youth mental health in Australia. And much higher rates of self-harm among younger adults than the general population. The question is no longer whether we need a National Youth Suicide Prevention Plan, but rather what it should include?
The panellists explored the issues impacting young people’s mental health, the complexity of a youth focused policy and emphasised the importance of this policy interacting with other polices to ensure a cohesive, effective response.
- Anne Hollonds, Australia's National Children's Commissioner;
- Dr Summer May Finlay, Postdoctoral Fellow on a NHMRC funded project with University of Canberra and a lecturer at the University of Wollongong;
- Joe Ball, CEO, Switchboard Victoria;
- Annabel Ramsay, Paralegal at the Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) and representative speaker for batyr;
- Associate Professor Jo Robinson, head of suicide prevention research at Orygen; and facilitated by
- Dr Melissa Sweet.