In Parliament

Members Statement - Children's Mental Health



Wednesday, 9 June 2021.

Mr NEWBURY (Brighton) (10:03):

Mental health issues have swept across Victoria like a tidal wave.

Labor has sacrificed our children’s mental health. Children have been locked out of our schools for 114 days.

A secret report from the Victorian Agency for Health Information has revealed that in the six weeks to the end of March average weekly presentations to emergency departments by children were up 51 per cent for those self-harming and suffering suicidal thoughts and 44.9 per cent where teenagers have needed resuscitation in emergency care.

The report also found that girls aged 12 and above have been hardest hit, with a 26 per cent increase in those battling serious eating disorders and an alarming 34 per cent increase in new disorder cases.

Kids Helpline is also reporting disturbing figures in Victoria. Tracy Adams, the Chief Executive Officer of the helpline’s parent Yourtown, has said:

It is very clear that the pandemic is taking a toll on the lives of children and young people …

and that the Victorian results are ‘very disturbing’.

The helpline reports that over the last six months there has been a 184 per cent increase in emergency interventions where the helpline counsellor has been forced to call police, ambulance or other emergency intervention services, and further, for children and young people aged 5 to 25, 44 per cent emergency interventions occurred because of an immediate intention to commit suicide.

This Government has lost its moral compass.

Labor’s lockdown is causing lifelong mental health damage to our children.

What is happening is criminal.

Labor is dangerous.