Terms of reference

Inquiry into Suicide in Australia

Terms of reference

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On 10 September 2009 the Senate referred the following matter to the Community Affairs References Committee for inquiry and report by the last sitting day in April 2010:

The impact of suicide on the Australian community including high risk groups such as Indigenous youth and rural communities, with particular reference to:

  1. the personal, social and financial costs of suicide in Australia;

  2. the accuracy of suicide reporting in Australia, factors that may impede accurate identification and recording of possible suicides, (and the consequences of any under-reporting on understanding risk factors and providing services to those at risk);

  3. the appropriate role and effectiveness of agencies, such as police, emergency departments, law enforcement and general health services in assisting people at risk of suicide;

  4. the effectiveness, to date, of public awareness programs and their relative success in providing information, encouraging help-seeking and enhancing public discussion of suicide;

  5. the efficacy of suicide prevention training and support for front-line health and community workers providing services to people at risk;

  6. the role of targeted programs and services that address the particular circumstances of high-risk groups;

  7. the adequacy of the current program of research into suicide and suicide prevention, and the manner in which findings are disseminated to practitioners and incorporated into government policy; and

  8. the effectiveness of the National Suicide Prevention Strategy in achieving its aims and objectives, and any barriers to its progress.

The Committee is seeking written submissions from interested individuals and organisations preferably sent electronically by email to community.affairs.sen@aph.gov.au as an attached PDF or Word format document. The email must include full postal address and contact details.

Alternatively written submissions may be sent to:

Committee Secretary
Senate Community Affairs References Committee
PO Box 6100
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Due to the considerable interest generated by this inquiry, the Committee is continuing to receive submissions throughout the inquiry.

Submissions become Committee documents and are made public only after a decision by the Committee. Publication of submissions includes loading them onto the internet and their being available to other interested parties including the media. Persons making submissions must not release them without the approval of the Committee. Submissions are covered by parliamentary privilege but the unauthorised release of them is not protected.

Information relating to Senate Committee inquiries, including notes to assist in the preparation of submissions for a Committee, can be located on the internet at https://www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/wit_sub/index.htm.

For further details please contact the Committee Secretariat by phone: (02) 6277 3515, fax: (02) 6277 5829 or email to community.affairs.sen@aph.gov.au.

Enquiries from hearing and speech impaired people should be directed to Parliament House TTY number 02 6277 7799. Adobe also provides tools at http://access.adobe.com/ for the blind and visually impaired to access PDF documents. If you require any special arrangements to enable you to participate in the Committee's inquiry, please contact the Secretariat.

For further information, contact:

Committee Secretary
Senate Standing Committees on Community Affairs
PO Box 6100
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Phone: +61 2 6277 3515
Fax: +61 2 6277 5829
Email: community.affairs.sen@aph.gov.au