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Families touched by stillbirth urged to tell their stories

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May 24, 2018

Families touched by stillbirth in Shepparton are being encouraged to share their stories, suggestions and solutions with political leaders.

Stillbirth Foundation Australia is calling on the Shepparton community to raise its voice and make a submission to the Senate’s Select Committee Inquiry into stillbirth.

The committee, which will inquire and report on the future of stillbirth research and education in Australia, is now calling for submissions from individuals and organisations.

Stillbirth Foundation Australia chief executive officer Victoria Bowring said it was vitally important that those who felt comfortable discussing their experience made a submission to the inquiry.

‘‘For too long families have suffered stillbirth in silence, and this inquiry presents the first real opportunity for those families to have their voices heard,’’ Ms Bowring said.

‘‘With six babies stillborn in Australia each day, it is long overdue for our political leaders to hear the impact it has on families.’’

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 12 children were stillborn in Shepparton in 2016.

Ms Bowring said she hoped at the end of the inquiry, funding would be available for research that could help save more babies and lead to campaigns to inform parents of what they could do to reduce the chance of stillbirth.

‘‘This, right now, is our best chance to see the Federal Government take action to properly fund research and education campaigns,’’ Ms Bowring said.

‘‘There is nothing more powerful than simply telling your story and communicating the pain that is caused through stillbirth.’’

The closing date for submissions is June 29. The committee is to report on or before the second Senate sitting Thursday of next year.

To find out more about the inquiry and how to make a submission, visit www.aph.gov.au

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