On June 10th 2019 during Men’s Health Week, at the State Library of WA, over 130 leaders and representatives of WA’s peak private, public, union, sporting groups, and NFP organisations agreed that we need to be doing more to turn around the many negative health and wellbeing trends we are seeing for men and boys. Of all the shocking statistics the fact that the leading cause of death in 15-44 year-old Australian males is suicide, is a compelling call to action. Those present unanimously agreed that it was time for a fresh approach – time to embark on a collaborative ‘whole-of-community’ and ‘out of the silo’ response.
Facilitated by sector peak-body Men’s Health & Wellbeing WA (MHWWA) the assembly launched and welcomed the WA Government’s Men’s Health Policy. The meeting then took the opportunity for discussion of the growing crises facing WA’s boys and men.
It was agreed that extended, deep cross-sectoral conversations across the issues were urgently needed and those present committed to participate in a series of whole-of-community ‘round tables’. These aim to map existing programs, initiatives and services, and uncover obstructions, duplications, inefficiencies, and gaps in essential services. From there can be identified opportunities to cooperate, collaborate, and better direct resources to save lives, and improve the quality of the lives of our boys and men, for the benefit of all,
Community leaders have accepted that we are duty bound to try a new approach. Business as usual is not working.
We the undersigned agree:
Our organisation is concerned about the crises we are seeing in the health and wellbeing of men and boys in WA.
That it is time for a whole-of-community response to these crises.
That any such a response will need to address both urgent issues and deeper, underlying causes in the longer term.
That our organisation is already involved in addressing these problems, and acknowledges that more can be achieved through sharing information, resources, and supporting initiatives that can make a difference.
We recognise Men’s Health and Wellbeing WA as the peak body in the men’s and boy’s health and wellbeing space, and acknowledge that it has advocated for recognition of the importance of a focus in this area for 20 years.
Our organisation agrees to:
Where possible, become a member of MHWWA and participate in future round-tables and forums as appropriate. [It is acknowledged that some Peaks may be bound by policy which precludes membership of another peak.] Reciprocal membership is possible in some cases.
Support MHWWA in its aims to fully scope the needs of this sector and identify opportunities for change, cooperation and collaboration: e.g. supporting MHWWA’s ‘portal’ initiative.
Share the outputs of MHWWA with our own organisational and individual members as appropriate, including encouraging membership of MHWWA where that has benefit.
Support MHWWA to achieve sustainability in its core funding, including in-principle support of MHWWA funding applications for specific projects (case by case).