The Government is providing further support for veterans by providing funding for new mental health initiatives and honouring those who have served through Centenary of Anzac commemorations.
Expanding access to mental health for veterans
This Budget provides $26.4 million for new mental health initiatives, building on existing programs totalling around $663 million over the forward estimates.
To ensure timely access by former serving personnel to mental health care, $14.6 million will be provided to extend non-liability health cover for certain conditions to more former members of the ADF.
Funding of $6.4 million will be provided to expand access to the Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Services to veterans involved in high-risk peacetime service and their families as well as the families of veterans killed in operational service.
Additional funding will be provided to develop and maintain a Peer-to-Peer program and for the Defence online resilience platform LifeSMART. This provides veterans and their families with access to online modules to assist with issues such as anger management.
Building on previous initiatives
This new package builds on the Government's commitment to address veterans' mental health issues.
In 2009, the Government provided $93 million over four years in response to the Dunt Review. The response covered a wide variety of issues including suicide prevention and mental health programs.
A milestone of national significance
The Centenary of Anzac is an important opportunity to recognise the service and sacrifice of past and current Anzacs.
The Government is providing an extra $25 million for the Anzac Centenary, taking total government funding to over $140 million.
Key initiatives include $10 million for seed funding to develop the Anzac Centenary travelling exhibition. This exhibition will be made available across Australia.
$2.8 million will be provided for grants for family and academic research on key Centenary of Anzac themes.
$2.7 million will be provided to commemorate the first convoy of troops that left Albany on 1 November 1914. This event will be broadcast nationally.