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National submission for the Darwin AMHC

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On the 29th of July, 2000 the Northern Territory Lived Experience Network made a formal submission to the Australian Government in relation to the new Darwin Adult Mental Health Center.

The submission was based on key themes which emerged from the Lived Experience Consultation, which highlighted the importance of

  • The physical environment feeling safe, comfortable, therapeutic, and private.
"Break out spaces", "soft furnishings", "soft sounds", "gardens", "no fluoro lights", "artwork", "no through traffic", "reflecting community".
  • Location, accessibility, and promotion of the Centre within the community.
"24 HOUR ACCESS", "One-Stop-Shop", "central location", "transport support", "public transport", "hotline", "online information/directory", "text, phone, email options", "promotion by TV, radio, newspaper, social media and buses".
  • Skilled staff providing a safe and person-centred service.
"Welcoming, non-judgmental, empathetic", "calming", "look/act non-clinical", "include staff with lived experience", "non-pathologizing", "not rushed", "ask me about my needs", "listen to me", "not have to retell my story", "be representative of my community".
  • Holistic and non-clinical supports delivered as part of multi-disciplinary teams.
"Advocacy", "peer support", "problem solving", "counselling", "individual and group options", "strengths based", "trauma informed", "support to understand and learn own strategies", "access to other services and supports", "integrated and holistic mental health, AOD and physical supports", "skilled GPs", "medication support and NOT psychiatrist dominated".

Concerns were also expressed during the Consultation that the $5 million dollars announced by the Australian Government to establish the Darwin Adult Mental Health Centre would not be sufficient to fund the facility with the four service elements described in the Australian Government Consultation paper.

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