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Media Release by Senator the Hon Amanda Vanstone

Men’s Line Australia – helping men across the country

While the festive season is an occasion for fun and relaxation for most people, it is also a time when relationships can come under significant stress.

In particular, many men experience relationship problems or breakdowns during this time of year but up until recently there were few services that helped with their specific needs.

That’s why Men’s Line Australia is so vital. It is a unique phone counselling service that provides a national, 24 hour a day, seven-day a week family relationships counselling service specifically for men.

Since it started in late September, the service has helped more than 1300 people across the country, many of who without the help line would not know where to turn for help.

The help line’s success is clearly demonstrated by a staggering 50 per cent increase in the number of callers during November.

Men’s Line Australia provides confidential, easily accessible support to men to help strengthen and manage their relationships with partners, ex-partners and children, particularly those facing separation or having problems with ex-partners and their children.

Staffed by dedicated and qualified counsellors, the service has already helped men of all ages, interestingly, 13 per cent of calls in the first month were made by women seeking help for a son, husband, boyfriend, brother or father.

The Howard Government has provided funding of more than $1.6 million over three years to Care Ring (Personal Emergency Services Inc.) to operate Men’s Line Australia.”

Men’s Line Australia is particularly useful for men living in rural and regional Australia where they may have previously had trouble accessing appropriate relationship services.

Often men in the country can feel isolated when they need help, now for the cost of a local call they can get the right help when they need it.”

The service is part of the Government’s $18 million Men and Family Relationships initiative, which also funds 54 men’s relationship support projects across the country.

The number of Men’s Line Australia is 1300 78 99 78* (for the cost of a local call). *Calls from mobile phones will be charged at mobile phone rates.