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The Hon Dan Tehan MP
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Cyber Security
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC

21 March 2017

DVA services for Townsville veterans ongoing

The Department of Veterans’ Affairs office in Townsville is not closing.

The Townsville Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) office is not closing.

The Townsville On-Base Advisory Service (OBAS) at Lavarack is not changing.

The Townsville Veterans’ Access Network (VAN) is not closing and there are no plans to merge it with the Department of Human Services.

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Dan Tehan said two additional staff would commence working in the VAN office in April and a further two would join the VVCS office to work with complex and at risk clients and to support the Townsville Suicide Prevention program.

The Townsville VVCS is one of the busiest and largest in Australia and provides support to serving and ex-serving personnel and their families.

Improvements to processing functions have been made with four staff relocating to Brisbane where they will continue to deliver incapacity, rehabilitation, compensation and OBAS services.

“Townsville is home to a large number of serving and ex-serving Australian Defence Force personnel and DVA’s Townsville operations are crucial to supporting these clients,” Mr Tehan said.

“DVA staff are also working closely with the Primary Health Network in support of the Suicide Prevention Trial the Government is undertaking in Townsville and other mental health initiatives in the North Queensland area.”

Mr Tehan also reminded the veteran community that VVCS crisis support could be accessed 24/7 on 1800 011 046.

Media enquiries:

Minister Tehan’s Office: Byron Vale, 0428 262 894
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) can be reached 24 hours a day across Australia for crisis support and free confidential counselling. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 8 8241 4546). VVCS is a service founded by Vietnam veterans.