Today is R U OK? Day, a day to help raise awareness about suicide prevention across our communities and encourage people to have regular and meaningful conversations with family and friends.
Federal Member for Blair, Shayne Neumann MP said 2020 has been a devastating year with COVID-19 and the resulting lockdowns have added pressure to people’s mental health and wellbeing.
“Being cut off from family and loved ones, restrictions in movement and social gatherings, and not knowing whether their job is safe have seen many locals struggle to adjust to life in a world very different from 2019,” Mr Neumann said.
“There’s never been a more important time to reach out to ask the people in our lives: R U OK?
“Starting this simple conversation could help a family member, friend or workmate open up.”
Mr Neumann said it was important to remember local people who are particularly vulnerable, including defence personnel and veterans, who experience higher than average rates of mental health issues and suicide.
“I’ve been calling for a full Royal Commission, with a clear start and end date, to shine a light in this issue and deliver restorative justice for veterans and their families.
“This is a difficult time for 600 JBS workers who have just lost their jobs. They will need support and care during this time.
“In addition, we need to be aware of the residents of our aged care homes who are cut off from contact with their loved ones.
“It’s important we take the time to reach out and start a conversation with family, loved ones, neighbours.”