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SENATE INQUIRY’S FIRST ICE REPORT REVEALS HOW MUCH WORK REMAINS TO BE DONE - Media Release, Thursday 7 September 2017

CATHERINE KING MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR HEALTH AND MEDICARE
MEMBER FOR BALLARAT

CLARE O'NEIL MP 
SHADOW MINISTER FOR JUSTICE 
MEMBER FOR HOTHAM

SENATOR THE HON LISA SINGH
LABOR SENATOR FOR TASMANIA
DEPUTY CHAIR, PARLIAMENTARY JOINT COMMITTEE ON LAW ENFORCEMENT

The release of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Law Enforcement’s first report into crystal methamphetamine (ice) is a good step, but it also highlights serious and unaddressed problems in the fight against ice.

The Turnbull Government must do more to combat the scourge of ice on our communities – particularly in regional Australia.

The first report identifies the constant challenges faced by law enforcement, with a recommendation for more work to be done on reviewing and improving drug diversionary programs.

It also stresses the importance of effectively implementing the “three pillar” strategy by tackling demand and supply, as well as reducing harm.

The tabling of the report today, encouraging further action on ice, is also a sharp reminder of the farce that is the Government’s evidence-free scheme to trial drug testing of social security recipients.

An open letter from 109 addiction specialists, 330 doctors and 208 registered nurses to Malcolm Turnbull has called on him to drop the trial.

A separate Senate Inquiry heard overwhelming evidence from medical professionals, addiction specialists and community organisations that the drug testing trial will not work, and that it may actually adversely impact the medical treatment and rehabilitation of people suffering from drug and alcohol addiction.

To succeed in the battle against ice, Australia needs strong investment in drug prevention, treatment services, support services, and harm minimisation.

Labor will strongly argue for the Inquiry’s final recommendations to effectively address rehabilitation and treatment.

THURSDAY, 7 AUGUST 2017

MEDIA CONTACT: TAIMUS WERNER-GIBBINGS 0429 820 344