We need to be heard
Following the Royal Commission into Mental Health, every Victorian has the right to be aware of the proposed changes to be made to the Mental Health and Wellbeing Act due to be "phased in" by mid-2022.
Those of us impacted by personal experience of the failings of the current system need to send our feedback on the development of the new Act via the following website: https://engage.vic.gov.au/mhwa
Of course - not surprisingly - little publicity regarding these proposals has been made available and, therefore, there is little time left to submit a response, with the deadline to do so being July 4.
I urge anyone watching a loved one battling mental health issues to take the time to study the wording of this proposed Act to ensure that the rights of each individual to dignified, safe and decent treatment, and support is the only possible outcome.
Having been assured on numerous occasions over the past 18 years that I was being "heard" each time I fought to gain help for my son, I realised there is a major difference between "hearing" and actually "listening"!
The proposed changes to the Act are supposed to address the many issues and experiences of families and carers sent to the commission, stressing the need to give them the right to all information and decision-making pertaining to their loved one rather than the diagnosis of an
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authoritarian psychiatrist. Having read the draft of the proposed new Act, I am not too sure those of us who shared our stories have actually been "listened to" and I fear that there will be many more broken hearts and lost souls during the next 10 years as this government attempts to provide a satisfactory system.
Sue Skahill, Bendigo
Not a good look
The latest round of toxic-revenge-back-stabbing within the National Party, resulting in the return of Barnaby Joyce as leader and deputy Prime Minister, makes clear that there are no adverse career consequences for a powerful man in Australia subject to serial sexual harrassment allegations.
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"The Nats" - a party which achieves six per cent of the national vote at best - simply should not have the influence it has. The term "unrepresentative swill" comes to mind. A Liberal Party with any integrity and confidence in its ability to win government on its own electoral merits would cut the National Party loose.
Michelle Goldsmith, Eaglehawk
Not the end of the world
If he had a doomsday clock it would be set at one second to midnight.
Yes, it is difficult for brief periods. No, it's not the end of the world.
I visit regional Victoria often and I admire their resilience and optimism. Some businesses are struggling, but at the same time it's been reported many are overwhelmed with customers when restrictions are eased.
By the way, I wish NSW the best in their latest outbreak - and now lockdown. Looking forward to Mr Walsh's doom and gloom comments about it.