Women’s Health Victoria established the Women’s Mental Health Alliance in 2019 in the context of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System.


The Alliance provides expert advice to policy makers and health services on the mental health of women and girls, and undertakes advocacy to ensure all women have access to evidence-based, gender-sensitive and trauma-informed mental health support. The Alliance works to ensure the voices of women with lived experience are centred in policy, advocacy and service delivery.

Why women’s mental health?

Gender is recognised as a social determinant of mental health.  However, there is a lack of awareness about the prevalence, risk factors and experience of poor mental health among women and girls. There is also limited evidence about how best to prevent and respond to mental ill health among women and girls and how to promote their mental wellbeing. 
Overall, women and girls in Australia have poorer mental health than men and boys, including: 

The impact of gender on mental health manifests in many ways. These include experiences of gender inequality, discrimination, gender stereotyping, sexualisation, sexual harassment, family violence and sexual violence, women’s disproportionate responsibility for unpaid caring work, economic disadvantage and the marginalisation of women’s health needs within the mental health service system. 

Alliance membership

Women’s Health Victoria (Secretariat)
Australian Services Union
CASA Forum
Domestic Violence Victoria
Gender Equity Victoria
Gippsland Women’s Health
Good Shepherd Australia and New Zealand
Jean Hailes for Women's Health
Melbourne Alliance to End Violence against women and their children (MAEVE), University of Melbourne
Mental Health Victoria
Mind Australia
Monash Alfred Psychiatry research centre
Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation
Monash University School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine 
Multicultural Centre for Women's Health

Rainbow Health Victoria
Royal Women’s Hospital
Victorian Mental Illness Awareness Council
Women’s Information, Support & Housing in the North (WISHIN)
Women with Disabilities Victoria
Women's Health East
Women's Health in the North
Women's Health in the South East
Women's Health West
Women's Mental Health Network Victoria
Youth Affairs Council of Victoria

Associate Members
Victoria Legal Aid
Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission

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Statement from the Women's Mental Health Alliance - Nov 2019

The Alliance has come together to ensure gender is centred in the development of recommendations for mental health reform.

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Gender analysis of Royal Commission’s interim recommendations - Apr 2020

The Alliance’s analysis of the interim recommendations of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System.

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Policy Brief: COVID-19 and women’s mental health - June 2020

Women are significantly more likely than men to have experienced negative mental health impacts due to COVID-19.

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Additional evidence on gender and mental health for the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System - July 2020

The Alliance provided further evidence on gender and mental health to inform the Commissioners’ deliberations.

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WHV Publications and Resources

A list of WHV’s recent mental health-related resources and publications.

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For more information about the Alliance