Killing Exposes Metal Health Failings

03 Jan 2008 archivemedia

The Rann Government must reveal the number of mentally ill South Australians being left to fend for themselves in hostels.

Shadow Mental Health Minister Michelle Lensink said the tragic killing of a 22-year-old woman has highlighted an ongoing crisis in South Australia.

“I have received credible reports that between 20 and 30 mentally ill people are being left to fend for themselves in hostels and unsupported accommodation in Adelaide,” Ms Lensink said.

“The Government must come clean and reveal the full extent of how many mentally ill people are being funded to stay in backpacker hostels.

“The Opposition and the families of many sufferers do not regard this as appropriate care.”

Ms Lensink said Mental Health Minister Gail Gago had questions to answer about the Government’s procedures after the death of West Australian backpacker Toby Garratt.

“Is it Government procedure for food vouchers to be delivered by taxi?” Ms Lensink said.

“Why is the government pursing a policy of putting mentally ill people in motels, hostels and unsupported accommodation while at the same time selling off Glenside to raise money?

“The mentally ill are among the most vulnerable people in our society and often require the greatest support.

“The abandonment of West Australian backpacker Toby Garratt has had tragic consequences.”