Submission to Employment White Paper
Mental Health Australia was pleased to provide this submission to inform the Australian Government’s Employment White Paper. Mental health and employment are inherently intertwined. Engaging in meaningful and contributing activity, such as employment, is strongly associated with positive mental health and wellbeing – and investing in mental health and wellbeing is associated with increased economic participation and productivity.
Everyone has the right to work and to free choice of employment. Unfortunately, despite nearly half of Australians experiencing a mental health condition at some time in their life, people with experience of mental ill-health still often experience employment-related stigma and discrimination. People with psychosocial disability in particular can face high barriers to employment, and have a far lower rate of employment compared to people with other disabilities and the general population.
This submission outlines key actions the Australian Government should take - in partnership with the mental health sector, communities and businesses - to improve employment opportunities for people with experience of mental ill-health and psychosocial disability, and address urgent mental health workforce shortages. The Employment White Paper is a welcome opportunity to address these disparities and promote realisation of the right to work for all Australians.