11 September 2019

Federal Labor commits to Headspace at Cooma and Batemans Bay

| Ian Campbell
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Member for Eden Monaro, Mike Kelly and Shadow Assistant Miniayer for Mental Health, Deborah O'Neill with kids, parents and staff at The Hub Youth Centre in Cooma. Photo: Supplied.

Member for Eden Monaro, Mike Kelly and Shadow Assistant Minister for Mental Health, Deborah O’Neill with kids and staff at The Hub Youth Centre in Cooma. Photo: Supplied.

If elected on May 18 a Shorten Labor Government will create a $3.5 million Headspace centre in Cooma, going beyond the outreach service that currently operates from of Headspace Bega.

Labor member for Eden Monaro, Mike Kelly, says youth mental health is a persistent and increasing concern in the high country.

“Many parents, community members and young people themselves have raised with me the need for more youth mental health services in the high country,” he says.

“Today’s announcement will make a real difference to our community.

“As the Co-Chair of the Parliamentary Friends of Suicide Prevention, one of my priorities is to ensure that there are adequate suicide prevention programs for people in rural and regional Australia, that’s why I’m delighted to deliver a service like this in Cooma.”

The Headspace centre in Cooma will promote young peoples’ wellbeing across mental health, physical health, work and study support, and alcohol and other drug services.

Today’s Eden Monaro commitment follows a similar pledge yesterday in the seat of Gilmore, where local candidate, Fiona Phillips announced Labor would match the Coalition’s earlier commitment to build a dedicated Headspace centre at Batemans Bay.

“Our announcement builds on Labor’s strong history of supporting and expanding headspace, including our recent announcements to open new headspace centres across the country,” Ms Phillips says.

While not denying the need, Liberal candidate for Eden Monaro, Fiona Kotvojs says a full Headspace for Cooma had not been raised as a priority with her.

“Because Cooma is currently serviced by the outreach service from Bega Headspace,” she says.

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