The final report will be due in 18 months while it’s expected interim findings will arrive this time next year.
“This is about being forever vigilant for the care and wellbeing of our veterans,” Mr Morrison said.
“Those veterans and all serving men and women protect our community and our freedoms. It is our duty to do the same for them.”
The government expects to spend $40 to begin the process. Not only will the commissioner investigate past and new deaths, but also make recommendations for how we can help serving Australians improve their mental health.
“It’s all about being permanently vigilant about their welfare,” Mr Morrison continue.
Research conducted in 2019 found that ex-serving men were 18 per cent more likely than other Australian men to take their own lives. Meanwhile, ex-serving women are two times likelier than civilian women. Over the same period, twenty-one defence veteran women have taken their lives.
Drug use is also rife: 20 per cent of veterans are using antidepressants and opioids compared to 15 per cent of all Australians.
“The only acceptable number to the Australian community is zero, and we’ve got to keep working towards that,” Veteran’s Affairs Minister Darren Chester told ABC radio.
“The prime minister has made it very clear that all options are on the table when it comes to the different mechanisms required by government to investigate these matters.”
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