Jennifer Westacott is Chief Executive of the Business Council of Australia and Chair of the Mental Health Council of Australia.
In this speech to the 2013 Inspire Foundation Breakfast, Jennifer Westacott discusses employment and mental health.
She highlights the fact that:
- people with a mental illness make up more than 50 per cent of those people unemployed
- Australia has one of the lowest rates of employment participation by people with lived experience of mental illness in the OECD.
These statistics demonstrate that increased participation is an economic issue and not just a moral and social issue.
She emphasises the fact that people experiencing mental illness want to work, they want to contribute and they want to lead meaningful lives where they participate and add value to their workplaces and communities.
She says that together, with care and meaningful engagement, we can make Australia a great place to work for everyone, including people who live with mental illness and those who care for them.