Towards an independent and effective national mental health consumer organisation: Alternative formats available on request to PIAC - Contact PIAC
PIAC commends the Commonwealth Government for its proposal to initiate and fund an independent national mental health consumer organisation. PIAC submits that to be an effective organisation, it should be created with the objectives to assist, collaborate and supplement the work of existing mental health consumer organisations.
PIAC has concerns that many consumer organisations and NGOs that might be members of a national mental health consumer organisation are also providers of services to consumers. This could lead to a perception of a conflict of interest. Consequently PIAC submits that the new organisation would be better to aim not to speak with one voice on behalf of all of its constituent members but should be a facilitator, drawing attention to various points of view and perspectives.
PIAC also believes that a new organisation should be structured so that it has a high level of independence from government. This can be partly achieved by the organisation receiving funding from different and varying sources.