Sixth annual wounded, injured and ill digger forum

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The Hon Mal Brough MP

Minister for Defence Materiel and Science

Special Minister of State in the Australian Government

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5 November 2015

The sixth annual Chief of Army’s Wounded, Injured and Ill Digger Forum commenced in Canberra today.

The Minister for Defence Materiel and Science, the Hon Mal Brough MP, and the Chief of the Australian Army, Lieutenant General Angus Campbell, DSC, AM, met with soldiers and their families, as well as Defence health care providers.

The forum is an opportunity for wounded, injured and ill members to share their experiences with Army’s senior leaders and Defence health care providers and support services.

The theme of the 2015 forum is improving the options and experience of wounded, injured or ill personnel when they transition to duties in the Army or to life in civilian employment.

Minister Brough said the forum demonstrated Army’s commitment to supporting its wounded injured and ill soldiers.

“Military service is an occupation which places unique demands on members of the Australian Defence Force and their families,” Minister Brough said.

“Whether Defence members become wounded, injured or ill on operations or at home, they should feel confident that they will be supported through their journey of rehabilitation and recovery.

“The Chief of Army’s Wounded, Injured and Ill Forum is a positive example of the Army continuing to learn from their members, while continuing to improve the support services available to wounded injured and ill personnel.

“I’d like to especially thank the soldiers and their families who are sharing their personal stories and experiences and contributing to this forum.”

LTGEN Campbell said the Army continued to improve the available support for members who are wounded, injured, or ill.

“Our Army shares a responsibility with the agencies and organisations that assist those of us who become wounded, injured or ill during service,” he said.

“This is an obligation that I take very seriously, not only because it is the right thing to do, but because it rebuilds Army capability and respects their sacrifice.

“This responsibility includes supporting those with ailments we can see and importantly those we cannot see, like degenerative physical injuries, pain syndromes, traumatic brain injury and mental health conditions.

“Our obligation extends to ensuring our wounded, injured and ill personnel return to their duties; continue in service in other Army trades and corps, or transition to civilian life and a new career after Army with dignity.”

The forum is an important opportunity for the Army to listen and learn from its soldiers and their families. The feedback received at the forum assists the Army to continue to improve the framework supporting wounded injured and ill members and their families.

The forum is part of the Army’s Support to Wounded, Injured and Ill Program which was established in 2008 to meet the needs personnel returning from operational deployments in East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Media contact:

Chloe Petch (Minister Brough’s office) 0477 395 356

Defence Media (02) 6127 1999

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