Peat Island, by Adrian Mitchell #BookReview

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Peat Island is less than 250 pages long, but it took me a while to read it because its subject matter is distressing.  It’s the sad and sorry story of one of Australia’s institutions for the mentally ill, and how as a society we have failed to care for the vulnerable in ways that show respect for their humanity.  My reading of the book coincides with the Victorian Premier’s announcement that it will hold a Royal Commission into mental health if his government is re-elected.

Premier Daniel Andrews made the pledge because he recognised that mental illness is an issue for everyone.  He is quoted as saying that it hit home when both of his children had returned from school with letters about the death of a student.  In the ABC report (viewed 4/11/18)—while he didn’t allude to the recent Royal Commissions into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and…

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