Centerlink: Please help people with mental disorders

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My name is Georgina.

Recently, I have had to cut down my work hours due to my mental health. I have suffered for many years with bipolar, borderline personality disorder, depression, stress, and anxiety disorder. In April of this year, my mental health took a turn for the worse, when I developed a stress related speech stammer, and mental blocks, which has effectively caused me to suffer from memory loss. All the years that I have suffered from mental health issues, I have never asked for any assistance from the government. Now, that things have got worse, and been ordered by my doctor to work less hours, I have had no choice.

I have applied for Disability Support Pension, and for Newstart (whilst my D.S.P. claim gets processed). I have also handed in a medical certificate to Centerlink, hospital discharge papers, and proof that I am seeing a Psychologist, and a Psychiatrist; so in case I get asked to look for full-time work, I am exempt from that, in order to continue on with my therapy sessions. I am currently seeing a Psychologist, and a Psychiatrist.

Last Thursday, I had an appointment with a Psychologist at the Epping Centerlink office. The Psychologist has suggested that I quit my current job, and find another job, and work full-time. If I quit my current job, I will have no money for therapy; and if I start working full-time again, I will not be able to continue on with my therapy, and things may get even worse. I have already been in hospital once due to all of this unnecessary stress. The psychologist at the Centerlink office said to me that because I am able to do things on my own, and that I am not addicted to any drugs; I will not be eligible for the disability support pension. I understand that me being able to do things on my own, may mean that I am not eligible for such support, but being a drug addict? That seems a bit ridiculous! I am not saying that drug addicts do not deserve help; they most certainly do. However, us, living with a mental illness, which is unrelated to drug use, it seems a bit unfair. It's like we are being punished for that even happening to us. 

Also, one psychologist appointment at Centerlink will not help in our case. There should be more visits organised. 

It would be greatly appreciated if you could all help me with this, as I know that I am not the only one who has had to deal with such a thing. There are so many people out there, who have far worse mental issues than I do. Some of those people even commit suicide, as they feel that no one cares about them.



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