AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan and AFLPA CEO Paul Marsh have announced the appointments of Dr Kate Hall as the AFL’s Head of Mental Health and Wellbeing, and Dr Ranjit Menon as the AFL’s Chief Psychiatrist.
In a statement released by the AFL on Monday afternoon, the two new roles have been made to “improve the overall industry’s support of mental health and wellbeing for current and past male and female players, umpires, coaches and over 3000 administration staff.”
McLachlan understands the severity of the issue of mental health on Australian rules football, and believes the pair will aid the league in tackling the issue.
“The mental health and wellbeing of everyone involved in our game is a key focus, we know it is one of the biggest issues facing the industry and these appointments ensure we have prioritised the wellbeing of players, umpires, coaches and football administration staff,” McLachlan said.
“The combination of a clinical psychologist in Dr Kate Hall and psychiatrist in Dr Ranjit Menon is a world-first for a professional sporting organisation, positioning the industry towards a best-practice model.
“Dr Hall is an experienced clinician and academic who has dedicated her research and practice to the treatment of addiction and mental health issues for over 15 years.
“Kate will lead the mental health and wellbeing function for the AFL, overseeing the strategy, implementation, clinical operations and review of all mental health policies, processes and activities within the AFL, and the wider industry.”
The pair will officially join the AFL in mid-September.