Australia: ‘Mobile injecting vans encourage drug use’

Evidence given to the NSW Parliament indicates that overdoses in the Kings Cross injecting room are 32 times higher than newcomers – clients experiment with higher doses of opiates and cocktails of drugs knowing that, if they should overdose, someone will bring them round. Click headline for more.

 

Media Release – Issue:

‘Mobile Injecting Vans Encourage Drug Use’
The proposal by Yarra Council to study the feasibility of injecting vans is a desperate measure which will not change the number of overdoses or overdose deaths in the area, and will only encourage the use of more dangerous drugs.
Gary Christian, Secretary for Drug Free Australia, has pointed to the lack of success by the Kings Cross Injecting Centre (MSIC) in reducing overdose deaths in the Kings Cross area.  He said, “Tracking of overdose deaths in the Kings Cross area from 5 years before the injecting room opened compared with the 9 years after the injecting room was opened showed no change whatsoever in the percentage of deaths in the area as compared to the rest of NSW.  The KPMG review showed that Kings Cross had 12% of NSW opiate deaths before the commencement of the MSIC, and in the 9 years after it remained at 12%, such has been its failure to make any difference.”
Evidence given to the NSW Parliament indicates that overdoses in the Kings Cross injecting room are 32 times higher than the overdose histories of those entering the injecting room, indicating that clients are experimenting with higher doses of opiates and cocktails of drugs knowing that if they should overdose in their experimentation, someone will bring them around. NSW Hansard records testimony from ex-clients of the injecting room who were rehabilitating from drugs that experimentation with higher doses of drugs is the reason for the inordinately high overdose rate in the room.
Spokes-person for The Dalgarno Institute, Mr Shane Varcoe said, “Any enterprise that inadvertently enables, empowers or equips ongoing illicit drug use has already breached best health care practice. Harm Reduction can never be about the support of on-going, health diminishing substance use. Caring, responsible and civic minded clinicians and policy makers will always be focused on movement toward exit from, and cessation of drug use. Mechanisms that enable any government agency to send a message to the community that we are not only supporting, but enabling tax payer funded illicit drug use, not only breaches care for the illegal drug user, but breaches international conventions. It also demonstrates a lack of concern for the wider majority of the non-drug using community.”
It’s time caring, tax payer funded, drug policy practice was used to empower, equip and enable drug users to exit drug use. Funds would be better used in quality recovery programs and more so in the very much neglected Demand Reduction arena to protect families, communities and the young from the scourge of illicit drugs.
The Dalgarno Institute recommends:
·       Both legislation and education as key foundations of culture shift away from permissive drug use ideologies.
·       Increase focus and investment in Demand Reduction and Recovery policies and programs is imperative.
For further information contact Mr Gary Christian – DRUG FREE AUSTRALIA drugfreeaust@drugfree.org.au

Source – http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/fed-up-with-drug-deals-richmond-traders-support-mobile-injecting-centre-plan-20160514-govbyf.html
“Resilient communities don’t use drugs – Resilient families don’t want drugs!”

For further data and resources on M.S.I.C. go to http://dalgarnoinstitute.org.au/index.php/advocacy/injecting-rooms

Other Research, Reports and Resources…
click on the links to read more!HIV and HCV transmission among Intravenous Drug Users.

The Case for Closure: Injecting Room 2010 UPDATE

Drug Free Australia’s Analysis of the KPMG Report on the Medically Supervised Injecting Centre in Kings Cross, Sydney

Drug Policy: Changing the Narrative

Analysis of the 2011 Lancet study on deaths from overdose in the vicinity of Vancouver’s Insite Supervised Injection Facility

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