Media Releases

Oakden: Minister yields to Dignity Party demands

Dignity Party MLC Kelly Vincent

Dignity Party MLC Kelly Vincent says this afternoon’s announcement in Parliament by the Minister for Mental Health confirms the Minister must listen to MPs connected with their constituents and community.

“Today’s announcement by the Minister for Mental Health confirming she will support two of my suggestions following the Oakden Report fallout is confirmation that the State Labor Government would do well to heed Dignity Party advice,” says Kelly Vincent.

“In her statement today the Minister said she will now support our calls for the Elder Abuse Select Committee to investigate Oakden, and also consider issues I have raised in relation to selection and screening of staff working in the aged care sector.

“It has been a damning indictment on our mental health system that older South Australians with mental illness and dementia have been subject to what amounts to state-sanctioned abuse, restraint, neglect and sub-standard care.

“Until we have better screening and training processes in place across our mental health and aged care systems, incidences of horrific abuse will continue.

“I also reiterate my call on the Minister for Mental Health to ensure that the residents of Oakden are consulted about transition to other facilities. After years of disempowerment and neglect at the hands of others, the residents must finally be involved in the decisions that affect their lives.

“I also call on the State Labor Government to allocate funds in the upcoming state budget to build a facility that will meet 21st century health care standards and meet all of the recommendations made in the report,” said Ms Vincent.