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Update on Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide, 23 December 2021

The Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide held its first block of hearings in Brisbane between 29 November – 10 December 2021 during which time it heard from 67 witnesses. The Royal Commission is taking a trauma-informed approach to investigations and is hearing from witnesses with lived experience as well as from advocates, ex-service organisations and organisations involved in providing medical and mental health support to veterans.

The Chair of the Commission, Nick Kaldas APM said, “we recognise that we are asking people to share their deeply personal stories – once again – and that this will be difficult for many, so, we will continue to provide support to those who come forward... at all times, this Royal Commission will strive to seek and hear evidence in a trauma-informed way. We will do everything we can to avoid further harm.

Engaging with the Royal Commission

The Commission is seeking to hear from more people with lived experience to help inform the work of the inquiry. There are several ways people can contact the commission and offer a submission.

Information about the submission process, appearing as a witness and applying for a private session is available on the Royal Commission website.

The second block of hearings will commence in Sydney on 14 February 2022.

Hearings can be viewed live through the Royal Commission’s website and recordings of previous hearings are available on its YouTube channel.

The Commission will enter a short Christmas shut-down period from Friday 24 December 2021 and will re-open on Tuesday 4 January 2022.

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