New support for
The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) has launched a new website, Operation Life Online, to assist veterans, Australian Defence Force (ADF) members and their families in learning about suicide prevention.
The website is the latest addition to Operation Life, the DVA’s suicide prevention and mental health resource.
Operation Life Online provides advice and resources for the veteran and defence communities, and is designed to raise awareness of suicide, from recognising warning signs and risk factors to learning ways to help in times of crisis.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Warren Snowdon said Operation Life Online will offer advice to people in need of immediate assistance, regardless of the time of day or their location.
“It is a tool to build resilience and to provide a direct channel to help when needed,” Mr Snowdon said.
He said Operation Life workshops were also available for people concerned about family, friends, mates or others in the veteran community. Attendance was free and people could register through the Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS).
“Tragically, suicide is the leading cause of death in Australia for men under 44 years and women under 34, and current and former serving members of the ADF are not immune from this loss. However, support is available and awareness of suicide risk could help save a life,” he said.
Mr Snowdon reminded the veteran community that free mental health treatment was available for eligible veterans without the need to lodge a DVA compensation claim, they just needed to contact DVA on 133 254.
Access to Operation Life Online is via DVA’s At Ease mental health portal: www.at-ease.dva.gov.au.
Veterans and their families can access 24-hour counselling and support through the VVCS on 1800 011 046. In the event of an emergency, call 000.
Edition 377, 3 September 2013