JOINT MEDIA RELEASE: New headspace services for young Australians in Canberra

Young Australians in Canberra will now have easier access to mental health services when and where they need it most, with the opening of a new headspace centre in Tuggeranong this week.

One in four young Australians are affected by a mental illness every year. Many young people have also been substantially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, making it more important than ever to ensure access to youth mental health services.

The headspace program aims to improve access for young people aged 12 to 25 years who have, or are at risk of, mental illness. headspace provides free or low cost youth-friendly support in four key areas—mental health, related physical health, substance misuse, and social and vocational support.

This new headspace service is part of the Morrison Government’s $111.3 million funding commitment to establish 30 new headspace services.

Minister for Health and Aged Care, Greg Hunt, said he was pleased to see the expansion of headspace services across Australia, providing essential services to young Australians affected by a mental illness every year.

“headspace offers a safe, welcoming place where young people can get non-judgmental professional help and peer support, so they can tackle their challenges in a way that is right for them,” Minister Hunt said.

“There are more pressures on young people today than ever before and the expansion of headspace will be vitally important in providing services in Canberra.”

Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, David Coleman, said mental health and suicide prevention remained one of the Morrison Government’s highest priorities.

“To date, headspace has provided 3.6 million services to people around Australia, and we are committed to ensuring young Australians can continue to get information, advice, counselling or treatment, when and where they need it,” Assistant Minister Coleman said.

“In the 2021-22 Budget, we provided an additional $278.6 million to strengthen the national headspace network by establishing new services and significantly enhancing those that already exist to ensure young people get the support and care they need. This will bring the Government’s investments in the headspace network over the next four years to a record $873.2 million.”

Minister for International Development and the Pacific and Liberal Senator for the ACT, Senator Zed Seselja, welcomed the announcement, and said it was important that young people in Australia know they are not alone on their journey.

“headspace is here to deliver quality frontline support and ensure the best possible care for people who are at risk,” Senator Sesejla said.

“We know intervention at the earliest possible stage is important to reduce the duration and impact of mental illness, so I encourage young people across Canberra to reach out for the help they need.”

“The Morrison Government has more than doubled funding for Canberra’s hospitals since 2013, on top of our $68 million Health Plan delivering services like the new headspace here in Tuggeranong.”

This headspace satellite service has been commissioned by the ACT Primary Health Network and is designed to meet the needs of young people in Tuggeranong.

In combination with the Morrison Government’s $68 million Health Plan for the ACT and more than doubling of funding for Canberra’s hospitals since 2013, the new headspace Tuggeranong will help deliver better outcomes for those living in the ACT.

The Morrison Government continues to make mental health a national priority, investing a record $2.3 billion in the 2021-22 Budget for the National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan to lead landmark reform of the mental health system.

Anyone experiencing distress can seek immediate advice and support through headspace (https://headspace.org.au/eheadspace/), Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800), Beyond Blue (1300 224 636), Lifeline (13 11 14), or the Government’s digital mental health gateway, Head to Health (www.headtohealth.gov.au).

If you are concerned about suicide, living with someone who is considering suicide, or bereaved by suicide, the Suicide Call Back Service is available at 1300 659 467 or on their website.

[END] 

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP
Minister for Health and Aged Care

Senator the Hon. Zed Seselja
Minister for International Development and the Pacific
Senator for the ACT

The Hon. David Coleman MP
Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister for
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention