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Thursday, December 7, 2023

Dual Commissioner role for Jennings

Former Public Transport Ombudsman, Treasure Jennings (pictured) has been appointed as the new Mental Health Complaints Commissioner and Disability Services Commissioner – with the currently separate positions to be combined into one dual role.

Minister for Mental Health, Martin Foley and Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers, Luke Donnellan announced Ms Jennings will take on the two roles beginning from 1 July for a five-year term.

The Ministers said Victorians would continue to be well supported by two independent bodies which safeguard rights, resolve complaints and provide advice on improving the mental health and disability sectors.

“We’re providing a strong voice for mental health and disability consumers, and I’m pleased to have someone of Treasure Jennings calibre take on these two roles,” said Minister Foley.

Ms Jennings is the former Public Transport Ombudsman and Deputy Chairperson of the Independent Office for School Dispute Resolution Victoria.

The Mental Health Complaints Commissioner and Disability Services Commissioner share similar functions and powers, including the power to investigate and resolve complaints, providing advice on matters relating to complaints, as well as education and advice about prevention of abuse.

Mr Donnellan said outgoing Disability Services Commissioner, Arthur Rogers and Mental Health Complaints Commissioner, Dr Lynne Coulson Barr have given great direction for both independent bodies and the Government sincerely thanked them for their hard work and dedication in their roles.

“As most quality and safeguarding functions from the Disability Services Commission are transferring to the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission, it is important to provide certainty for stakeholders and staff with this appointment,” he said.

He said clients, carers and family members should continue to use the same channels to contact either Commission.

For more information and to engage with the Mental Health Complaints Commissioner visit mhcc.vic.gov.au. For the Disability Services Commissioner, visit odsc.vic.gov.au.

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