Hon Helen Morton MLC

Hon Helen Morton MLC

Former Minister for Mental Health; Disability Services; Child Protection

    Youth summit tackles homelessness

    9/09/2015 10:10 AM
    • The Youth Affairs Council of Western Australia talking to young people and services about homelessness and complex mental health issues
    • Youth engagement is central to State Government's new suicide prevention strategy, Suicide Prevention 2020: Together we can save lives

    On any given night more than 3,700 young West Australians do not have safe or stable accommodation, according to the Youth Affairs Council of Western Australia (YACWA).


    With the support of the Mental Health Commission's Suicide Prevention program, YACWA is hosting a Youth and Homelessness Summit today to help improve understanding of the needs of homeless young people who are experiencing complex mental health issues.


    Mental Health Minister Helen Morton said youth homelessness was a critical issue, with young people making up almost half of Australia's homeless population.


    "'Reaching out and saving lives' is the theme of World Suicide Prevention Day tomorrow and today's summit is a great example of doing exactly that by giving a voice to young people and those who work with them," Mrs Morton said.


    "This summit provides an important opportunity for professionals and young people to share ideas, knowledge and experience about the complex issues young people face when they experience both homelessness and mental illness.


    "As part of the State Government's strategy Suicide Prevention 2020, the Mental Health Commission is developing a youth engagement strategy to ensure activities are relevant to young people, and to improve the mental health of future generations.


    "I look forward to seeing the summit's recommendations, which will be considered as part of the Suicide Prevention 2020 dedicated youth engagement strategy."


    YACWA is the peak non-government youth organisation in WA.


    Fact File

    • In 2013, suicide was the leading cause of preventable death for young people aged 15-24 in WA
    • Through Suicide Prevention 2020, the State Government committed $25.9 million across four years for prevention, intervention and post-intervention services
    • For more information, visit http://www.onelifewa.com.au
    • For support, contact Lifeline 13 11 14, or Beyond Blue 1300 22 4636

    Minister's office - 6552 6900