Constituency Statement - Mental Health

I'd like to give voice to a young woman from my electorate and her vision for Australia in 20 years' time.

Brighton teenager, Maighn Johnson, writes:

'My first experience in Australia's mental health system was at 12 when I went to see a psychiatrist for the first time. At 13 I was officially diagnosed with depression and anxiety. At 15 I went on my first medication for my insomnia. At 16 I was officially diagnosed with an eating disorder and at 17 I stayed in the paediatric intensive care unit after my first suicide attempt. My state still does not have a psychology ward for young people. Now aged 19, I reflect on my time within Australia's mental health system and I can't understand how our politicians argue that only now they realise it's broken. The shadow pandemic is not something new only discovered under COVID; it is something I and many young Australians have dealt with nearly our whole lives. In 20 years, I hope politicians will have stopped using my mind as a political battleground. Instead, I want politicians to deliver the following: comprehensive funding towards psychologists, accessible mental health care, preventative mental health care, awareness around medication and improved infrastructure. This would help those having mental health problems, all of which would make a happier and healthier Australia.'

I thank May for her contribution and I fully endorse her words.