Mental Health & Addiction Update - 6 March 2023

on 7 March

Mental Health & Addiction update

In this edition:

  • Message from Kiri Richards
  • Our work to transform wellbeing in Aotearoa 
  • Update on the repeal and replacement of the Mental Health Act
  • Launch of new online training 
  • National conversation on risk
  • Update from the Suicide Prevention Office 

Message from Kiri Richards
Associate Deputy Director-General of Mental Health and Addiction

Kia ora koutou

Our thoughts are with everyone affected by the cyclone and flooding around the motu over the past month. It has been an incredibly distressing time, even for those not affected directly. It's clear that the damage and disruption will test our resilience for some time. Please continue to look out for yourself, friends and whānau and reach out for support if you need to. 

In our role as steward of the mental health and addiction system, the team here at Manatū Hauora has been in close contact with our partners in Te Whatu Ora and Te Aka Whai Ora. We appreciate the tireless efforts of communities and our mental health and addiction workforces to support each other and to ensure tāngata whaiora continue to have access to services during these events. 

I’m only two months into this role, but it's already shaping up to be a very busy year. Although we've had leadership changes, with both a new Prime Minister and Minister of Health, our direction of travel for mental health and addiction services hasn’t changed. The Government remains committed to improving and transforming New Zealand’s approach to mental wellbeing in line with the direction set by He Ara Oranga: Report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction and carried forward in Kia Manawanui Aotearoa: Long-term pathway to mental wellbeing.

Strong partnerships will of course be vital to achieving our vision of pae ora (healthy futures) and an equitable and thriving Aotearoa in which mental wellbeing is promoted and protected. I very much look forward to meeting many of you, and working closely together, as we continue with this important mahi.

Ngā mihi, 


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