Today the Morrison Government announced that it will extend the final report date for the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide to 17 June 2024.
This extension provides an additional 12 months to recognise the broad scope of the Royal Commission’s inquiries into defence and veteran death by suicide and account for the ongoing impact of COVID-19.
“We recognise the important work the Royal Commission is doing to look at systemic issues of defence and veteran suicide, and the need to provide the Royal Commission with the time to do so in a trauma-informed way,’ the Attorney-General Michaelia Cash said.
“This extension will allow more individuals to come forward and share their experience with the Royal Commission. I thank all those who have already come forward,” she said.
To date, the Royal Commission has heard evidence from witnesses with lived experience of defence and veteran suicide, witnesses with specialist expertise, veteran ex-service organisations and support organisations. It has also heard evidence from the Commonwealth.
The Royal Commission is independent from Government and determines how it approaches its terms of reference, establishes its processes and informs itself for the inquiry, including how it hears directly from veterans and serving members, and their families.
Counselling and support staff will continue to be available to assist people calling or engaging with the Royal Commission, including counselling support available before, during and after a person participates in a hearing or private session. External support services, such as Open Arms, are also available to offer additional support to individuals.
A national legal advisory service and legal financial assistance scheme are funded and available for people or entities giving evidence or engaging in other ways with the Royal Commission.
The Government looks forward to receiving the Royal Commission’s final report on 17 June 2024.
Further information on the Royal Commission, including the Terms of Reference and information on how to make a submission is available at https://defenceveteransuicide.royalcommission.gov.au
If you, or someone you know, need support, you can contact:
• Lifeline Australia – 13 11 14
• Suicide Call Back Service – 1300 659 467
• Open Arms (current and ex-serving ADF personnel and their families are able to seek this free and confidential support) – 1800 011 046
• ADF Mental Health All-hours Support Line (for current serving ADF personnel and their families) – 1800 628 036.
• Safe Zone Support (for current and ex-serving ADF personnel and their families) – 1800 142 072. When you call Safe Zone Support, you do not need to identify yourself if you do not want to.
10 April 2022