Report Sheds Light on Mental Health Carers
Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, and the Parliamentary Secretary for Disability and Carers, Jan McLucas have welcomed the release of a new report on carers of people with mental illness.
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The Hon Mark Butler MP 28 November 2012
Minister for Mental Health and Ageing
Minister for Social Inclusion
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform
Senator Jan McLucas
Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Carers
Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, and the Parliamentary Secretary for Disability and Carers, Jan McLucas today welcomed the release of a new report on carers of people with mental illness.
Recognition and Respect: Mental Health Carers Report 2012 surveyed more than 500 mental health carers on the services available to them and to the people they care for.
“Mental health carers reported that their role is not well understood by the community, professionals, workplaces and schools and that they struggle to get information about the help available,” Mr Butler said.
“The Government’s $2.2 billion mental health reform plan has provided a significant boost for people with mental illness and their carers, however many carers still experience stigma, discrimination and difficulty gaining support.”
“Carers reported that their role impacts on their finances, physical and mental health, employment prospects, and social connections.”
Senator McLucas said the research reaffirms the significance of the Australian Government’s commitment to supporting Australia’s 2.6 million carers.
“The Australian Government recognises the vital role carers play in the lives of the people they care for,” Senator McLucas said.
“Caring is a rewarding and challenging role and carers need to be recognised, valued and respected for their important contribution.
“The Australian Government’s National Carer Strategy, launched in August last year, delivers on the Australian Government’s commitment to better respond to the needs of carers.
“The strategy, which includes $60 million in new funding over four years, helps to ensure carers have the opportunity to take part in all aspects of society, including the chance to participate fully in work, community and family life and builds on steps the Australian Government has already taken to support carers.
“This includes historic increases to the Carer Payment, a permanent $600 Carer Supplement, and a national campaign to raise public awareness of the role and contribution of carers.”
This report builds on the Government’s mental health reform package and the work of the National Mental Health Commission which brought the voices of consumers and carers to the fore in the nation’s first Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Report Card released yesterday.
Mr Butler said the Government’s $2.2 billion mental health reform plan includes a $54.3 million boost for new or expanded respite services to help around 1,100 families and carers of people with a mental illness to maintain their caring role.
“We’re expanding emergency and planned respite services which make a tangible difference in the lives of people living with mental illness as well as their families and carers.”
“Research like this is important in building an understanding of the needs and concerns of mental health carers to ensure we develop effective and efficient policy that best meets their needs,” Mr Butler said
Minister Butler’s Office 02 6277 7280
Senator McLucas’ Office 0400 130 568
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