Recommendations

Recommendation 1

2.95
The committee recommends that the government work with state and territory governments to collect comprehensive data on the occurrence of mental health injuries and suicide in first responders.

Recommendation 2

2.96
The committee recommends that the federal government work with state and territory governments to collect data on the cause of death for first responders who die while employed or die within 10 years of leaving their service.

Recommendation 3

3.60
The committee recommends that federal, state and territory governments work together to increase oversight of privately owned first responder organisations.

Recommendation 4

3.96
The committee recommends that a Commonwealth-led process involving federal, state and territory governments be initiated to design and implement a national action plan on first responder mental health.

Recommendation 5

3.99
The committee recommends that compulsory first responder mental health awareness training, including safety plans, be implemented in every first responder organisation across Australia.

Recommendation 6

3.101
The committee recommends that compulsory management training focusing on mental health, such as that developed by the Black Dog Institute, be introduced in every first responder organisation across Australia.

Recommendation 7

3.103
The committee recommends that mental health support services be extended to all first responder volunteers.

Recommendation 8

4.80
The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government establish a national stakeholder working group, reporting to the COAG Council of Attorneys General, to assess the benefits of a coordinated, national approach to presumptive legislation covering PTSD and other psychological injuries in first responder and emergency service agencies. This initiative must take into consideration and work alongside legislation already introduced or being developed in state jurisdictions, thereby harmonising the relevant compensation laws across all Australian jurisdictions.

Recommendation 9

4.81
The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government, in collaboration with the states and territories, initiate a review into the use of independent medical examiners (IME) in workers' compensation.

Recommendation 10

4.82
The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government establish a national register of health professionals who specialise in first responder mental health.

Recommendation 11

5.25
The committee recommends that a consistent approach to referrals to rehabilitation counsellors be developed across states and territories, requiring referrals to be made by general practitioners not associated with employers or insurers.

Recommendation 12

5.27
The committee recommends that early intervention mental health support services be made available to all employees of first responder organisations with the aim of preventing, or reducing the severity of mental health conditions.

Recommendation 13

5.44
The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government make funding available for research into the prevalence of mental health conditions in retired first responders.

Recommendation 14

5.45
The committee recommends that ongoing and adequate mental health support services be extended to all first responders who are no longer employees of first responder organisations around the country.

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