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Statement on past mental health practices

30 November 2017

 

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists commends the Queensland Government's acknowledgment of the past harmful mental health treatment of children in state care, and supports its commitment to meaningfully reconciling with all those affected.

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) recognises that continuous improvement in mental health care requires recognition of hurt and distress caused by some practices which occurred in the past. The RANZCP condemns unsuitable treatment of vulnerable members of society especially within mental health systems and any adverse and harmful effects that such placements have caused individuals.

The RANZCP expresses sincere regret to all those, who as children have suffered in any way while residents in an adult mental health facility and commends the Queensland Government’s commitment to meaningfully reconciling with those impacted.

Psychiatrists have a critical role to play in acknowledging historical harmful practices and committing to learn from them and expects psychiatrists to show empathy and support any healing initiatives.

Further information can be found within the RANZCP’s Position Statement ‘Acknowledging and learning from past mental health practices’.