Mental health ranked top issue in Hume and Whittlesea


Residents in Calwell and Scullin have placed mental health issues as the top social justice issue according to research conducted by the Salvation Army.

Over 15,000 people were surveyed across Australia for the Salvation Army’s National Social Justice Stocktake Report to garner a better understanding about people’s biggest concerns.

Locals in both Calwell and Scullin, which includes some suburbs in Hume and Whittlesea, rated mental health issues as their biggest social concern.

The national average sits at 53.9 per cent with Scullin sitting slightly above that (57 per cent) and Calwell just below it (49.5 per cent).

Community members in Calwell and Scullin were in lockdown for part of the survey, however, mental health was still ranked highly in almost every electorate in Australia, irrespective of lockdowns or other possible causes.

Family violence concerns ranked highly in Calwell with 44.7 per cent of respondents identifying it as a major issue. This was higher than the national average (35.4 per cent).

Statistics released by the Magistrates Court Victoria showing that in 2019-20, there were some 2788 family members that relate to family violence intervention orders living in Hume.

Scullin, which covers parts of the local government area of Whittlesea, ranked housing affordability as the second largest problem for its residents at 49 per cent.

It sits just below the national results for housing affordability (52.4 per cent).

There is a social housing shortfall of some 600 homes, and an estimated 2700 people who are experiencing homelessness in Scullin.

The report found that Australians care about social justice issues but they don’t know what to do about them.