Member for Kiama Gareth Ward has said he is disappointed that the Premier refused to answer a question in Question Time today on gaps in the mental health service system following the tragic Bondi Junction incident on 13th April 2024.

Mr Ward commended the Premier for his leadership during the Bondi Junction stabbing but called for an independent inquiry to ensure any gaps in services are identified and addressed.

Mr Ward said that whilst the Premier may feel entitled to ignore him, the Premier cannot ignore the issues.

“I know from my time as Minister for Disabilities that supports for people with phyco-social disabilities have been some of the most challenging to deliver. Possible service gaps need to be identified and addressed by the States in collaboration with the Commonwealth Government,” Mr Ward said.

“At the appropriate time, I would like to see an independent inquiry into mental health services, and I believe it’s appropriate to examine as part of that inquiry if the attacker at Bondi Junction had been in contact with services that could have provided more appropriate action and support.

“I am not making any allegation or any suggestion. I’m simply seeking answers to questions that many across our community are asking. I’ve also spoken with people in the sector that have expressed similar opinions.

“The nature of psycho-social disabilities presents some challenges to eligible participants gaining access to the NDIS. The Premier himself referenced mental health in the aftermath of the Bondi Junction attack.

“Whilst the Premier may feel entitled to ignore me, as the leader of our government he cannot ignore the issues.

“I reiterate my call on the Premier and the Government to commission an independent inquiry into possible service system gaps in the mental health system at the appropriate time,” Mr Ward concluded.