The Commission’s purpose, vision, values and principles are at the heart of all its work. The Commission’s staff articulated these foundations as part of their strategic plan for 2018-2023. To find out more, please read Key Directions.

The people of New South Wales have the best opportunity for good mental health and wellbeing and live well in their own community, on their own terms, having the services and supports they need to live a full life.

To monitor, review and improve the mental health and wellbeing of the community by undertaking strategic planning, systematic reviews and advocacy guided by people with lived experience of mental health issues and caring, their families and kinship groups.

Values and Culture
The Commission is a highly respected and independent organisation that supports and facilitates positive reforms in the community, and reports on outcomes that affect the mental health and wellbeing of all people in NSW.

In our work, we value:

People’s experience

  • We value the lived experience of mental health issues and caring, their families and kinship groups.
  • We will listen to what Aboriginal people tell us about what they need to support their social and emotional wellbeing.
  • We will honour the experiences of people who have attempted suicide and those bereaved by suicide.


  • We listen and partner with others to influence, to lead and to build capacity for achieving positive change.
  • We know we cannot achieve change on our own, and we value all our reform partners in the mental health services and social support sector.


  • We work with people with lived experience to ensure their lives are at the forefront of all reforms
  • We press for reforms to be put into action
  • We call for evidence-based and innovative solutions


  • We actively use evidence and data to drive change and accountability
  • We promote an open and transparent examination of the mental health and social support system
  • We take a cross-government and whole-of-person approach and work beyond individual interests or sector perspectives


  • We listen to the voice of lived experience and other stakeholders
  • We model professional and ethical conduct in our work
  • We are open and honest in our interactions


  • We respectfully engage with all voices within the mental health and social support system
  • We will draw attention to issues of concern and lead productive debate to maximise the potential for mental health reform to improve people’s lives


The Commission acknowledges the lived experience of people recovering from mental distress, and of those who offer them support and hope. We are committed to guiding NSW towards full recognition of the rights of people whose lives are affected by mental illness and away from stigma and discrimination.

We wish to pay respect to Aboriginal elders - past, present and emerging - and acknowledge the important role of Aboriginal people and culture within the NSW community.

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Last updated: 20 December 2018