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Mental Health Commission of NSW Update


Dear Members and Network NSW Subscribers

The Mental Health Commission of NSW has asked us to circulate an open letter from John Feneley, Commissioner of the Mental Health Commission of NSW. The letter provides an overview of the Commission’s progress since their establishment in July 2012.

When NSWCAG did our road trip around NSW talking to people about how they would like to stay in touch with the Commission people told us they wanted to be updated regularly by the staff of the Commission. This shows the commitment of the Commission to communicate with the public about what they have been up to, so we encourage you to forward this to your networks and friends.

To read the letter click here click here.


Dr. Peri O’Shea
Chief Executive Officer
NSW Consumer Advisory Group – Mental Health Inc


Update: NSW Mental Health Commission Bill passed

Dear NSWCAG members and associates,

The Bill to establish the NSW Mental Health Commission (MHC) was passed in the NSW Parliament on Thursday 15 March 2012.

I have been in contact with the Minister for Mental Health's office last Thursday and can confirm that the Minister for Mental Health the Hon. Kevin Humphries is committed to Clause 8 of the MHC Bill which states "The Commissioner or at least one Deputy Commissioner must be a person who has or has had a mental illness".

More information about the Commission and the Bill is available at: http://www.health.nsw.gov.au/mhdao/mhcommission.asp

You may view the Bill on the NSW Parliament website at: http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/parlment/nswbills.nsf/0/F83BEDFAE38402A2CA2579510016BCE4 

For information about the Minister's commitment to the Commissioner or one the Deputy Commissioner being a person who has or has had a mental illness see:

The Minister's statements in the December newsletter: http://www.health.nsw.gov.au/resources/mhdao/minister_newsletter_12201_pdf.asp 

And in the Sydney Morning Herald last November: http://www.smh.com.au/national/health/mental-health-policy-to-be-run-by-those-who-have-fought-the-battle-20111123-1nv3v.html  

If you would like further information please do not hesitate to contact us at info@nswcag.org.au 

Ph:9332 0226.


Regards Peri

Dr. Peri O'Shea
B.Soc.Sci. Psyc.Hons. M.Soc.Policy.
PhDChief Executive Officer

NSW Mental Health Commission Bill introduced to parliament

 On the 24th of November 2011, Hon. Kevin Humphries, NSW Minister for Mental Health introduced the bill to parliament about the NSW Mental Health Commission (MHC). 

The Taskforce to establish the NSW Mental Health Commission had previously announced that the Commission would drive systemic reform, ensure accountability and support innovation and models of community based services. It was also previously announced that the initial priorities for reform would be:

  • better managing the experience of people with a mental illness, their families and carers
  • diverting people with a mental illness away from the prison system
  • and ensuring the smooth operation of the Mental Health Review Tribunal.

In introducing the bill, Kevin Humphries confirmed that these will be priorities and that the Commission will be focused on ‘real and lasting change' in the mental health system. The Minister said that the Commission will be able to give ‘independent, frank and fearless advice and recommendations to the Government on the mental health system and systemic issues affecting people who have a mental illness.' It was also announced that the commission will have a community advisory council who represent the diversity of New South Wales and have a role in undertaking community consultations. To the Minister's address please click here.

NSWCAG undertook consultation around what the Mental Health Commission should do and how it should hear from consumers. To read NSWCAG's consultation, please click here.

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