2500 boots at Parliament House to highlight high rates of male suicide

The 2500 Boots On The Lawn of Parliament House Awareness Campaign aimed to highlight male suicide.

A CONTINGENT of men and women from Port Stephens headed south, laden with more than 100 pairs of boots, to go to Parliament House on Monday for the 2500 Boots On The Lawn of Parliament House Awareness Campaign.

According to the Bureau of Statistics, approximately 2500 men take their lives by suicide every year, that’s 49 men a week or seven men every day.

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The event was to create awareness of the lack of services for men and to obtain a Minister for Men to address the problems that organisers believe are causing the high number of suicide deaths of men within our nation.

“We have a Minister for Women, a Minister for Indigenous Australians, a LGBTIQ+ Ministerial and Advisory Council and yet no Minister for Men,” Paul Withall, founder of Zero Suicide Community Awareness Program told News Of The Area.

Many Members of Parliament and Senators came to lay boots and to give their respect as they listened to stories from parents and loved ones who had died by suicide.

Senator Jim Molan took time out from medical leave to attend the event to commemorate the men and boys who take their lives every day.

‘’I contributed my old army boots to commemorate veteran suicides,” Senator Molan told News Of The Area.

“This is an incredibly important cause, and it was my privilege to visit and thank those behind it for their efforts and dedication,” Senator Molan continued.

Also attending was Tony Miller, the founder of Dads in Distress (DIDS), Mark Parton MLA, Senator Malcolm Roberts, Senator Ralph Babet, former Survivor contestant Steve Khouw, Andrew Wilcox MP, Senator Susan McDonald and Senator Gerard Rennick.

”The three main reasons men and boys contemplate ending their lives is because of relationship or family breakdown, loss of access to children or family court, and financial issues or loss of employment,” Mr Withall said.

“The national suicide rate of men is higher than the national road toll, it is time to provide support and access to gendered services for the men and boys of Australia,” Mr Withall continued.

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