Media release

Wellways Australia welcomes the 2018-2019 ACT Budget, saying it confirms the territory government’s promise of support for the community’s most vulnerable.

The Australian Capital Territory government has allocated $22.8 million to mental health spending this year, for both services and infrastructure. The budget also confirms last month’s announcement of a $1.8 million lifeline for those living in the ACT with a disability who are falling through the gaps of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

“These are people with complex needs who are being refused access to the scheme. This is happening Australia-wide, where people don’t meet the specific criteria of the NDIS, particularly when it comes to mental ill-health,” said Wellways Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth Crowther.

“We welcome the ACT’s acknowledgment and support of these people during the transition to the NDIS. This vulnerable community and their carers need support and we applaud the ACT government for recognising this urgent need,” she said.

The budget provides services to support varying degrees of mental ill health, including early intervention and support programs for young people and the elderly.

Infrastructure spending along with $10.7 million set aside to manage and operate three residential mental health services is also good news for community health. These services will accommodate people with mental health issues in a supported setting and there’s also funding for a new Step-Up-Step-Down facility in Canberra’s south to provide short term, intensive mental health care.

“Wellways operates two supported residential facilities in the territory and we believe the demand is there for more,” Ms Crowther said. “This investment in the mental health of the community is much-needed and most welcome. We agree there is a growing need for services to be provided at the local level.”

These services help people to stay well in the community and help prevent further costly hospital admissions.

Media release statement (PDF - 425KB)

For more information
Jane Kenrick, Media Officer, Wellways Australia
media@wellways.org or Ph: 03 8486 4208 M: 0428 899 845