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Heart-broken mother says Royal Commission into veteran suicide ‘bittersweet’

Oliver Peterson
Article image for Heart-broken mother says Royal Commission into veteran suicide ‘bittersweet’

A mother who spent two years bravely campaigning for a Royal Commission into defence and veteran suicide, is celebrating winning what she calls, “the first part of the battle”.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a change of heart, and wants the inquiry up and running by July.

Julie-Ann Finney lost her veteran son Dave to PTSD related suicide in February 2019. He had spent 20 years with the Royal Australian Navy serving in Timor and the Middle East.

More than 400 serving and ex-servicemen and women have taken their own lives since 2001 at a rate that is 18 per cent higher than the rest of Australians.

Ms Finney told Oliver Peterson today’s announcement has been a long time coming but she’s seeing this as “victory.”

“I am asking all veterans to see this as a victory,” she said.

“I’m incredibly grateful we’ve got this far today.”

If you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline on 13 11 14, BeyondBlue on 1300 224 636 or Open Arms (veterans’ counselling) on 1800 011 046.

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(Image: supplied)

Oliver Peterson
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