Some of Australia’s highest-ranking Defence personnel will give evidence during a two-week hearing of the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide, to begin in Sydney today.
The hearing, at the Pullman Hyde Park, will hear from Chief of Army Lieutenant General Rick Burr, Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Michael Noonan and Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld – among other senior ADF and Department of Veterans’ Affairs personnel.
The hearing will examine what Defence is doing to address serious issues around culture within each of its services.
It will also look at healthcare and wellbeing support for serving and ex-serving members, and assistance with the transition to civilian life.
The inquiry will hear from experts in prevention and “postvention” strategies, as well as witnesses with lived experience.
The hearing will run for eight days, concluding on 17 March.
It will be open to the public, and those wishing to attend in person are required to register.
Attendees will also need to provide proof of vaccination.
Those unable to attend in person can watch via livestream on the Royal Commission website.
The Royal Commission has so far received more than 1200 written submissions from individuals and organisations.
Anyone affected by Defence and veteran suicide is encouraged to make a submission.
The Royal Commission will release an interim report by 11 August, which will focus on issues requiring urgent or immediate action.