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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Summit marshals community action to reduce Ice supply, demand and harm

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Thursday, April 27, 2017

    Summit marshals community action to reduce Ice supply, demand and harm

    The Palaszczuk Government has gathered more than 150 health experts, drug and alcohol service providers, law enforcement officials, community representatives and affected families in Rockhampton today to marshal an action plan to confront the insidious and devastating drug, ice.

    Opening the Summit today, the Premier said the Government’s draft plan of 65 actions, was consistent with the national strategy, to reduce supply, reduce demand and minimise harm from ice, and she outlined the investment priorities for a dedicated funding almost $50 million.

    “Ice is a cheap, potent, and easy-to-access drug that is a national scourge – indeed it is a global scourge.”

    “My Government has made an unprecedented commitment to tackling the ice.”

    “In consultation with experts, the frontline service providers and the wider community, we have developed a draft plan of 65 actions to target the use and reduce the harm caused by crystal methamphetamine.”

    “Too often, our frontline staff and our first responders are having to cope with more violence and aggression as a consequence of the drug use.

    “Within homes and families, ice is having a huge impact. A truly shattering figure is that one in three children who required out-of-home care in Queensland last year came from a home with at least one parent addicted to ice.

    “If we are going to combat this menace, we need to have everyone involved and working with each other.”

    In addition to the Summit, a forum will be hosted with almost 40 people with that “lived experience” of Ice, either personally or within your own families.

    The Premier told the Summit to minimise harm, the Government allocated an extra $43 million over the next five years to increase access to specialist clinics and other support services.

    “I can announce today that we will be investing these funds across the full spectrum, including community-based counselling, non-residential rehabilitation, pre-and post-treatment support such as withdrawal management in residential rehabilitation, specialist peer support for families and flexible modes for counselling,” she said.

    This investment is in addition to measures within our health system including treatment and outreach services for Cooktown in the far north and Gold Coast on our southern border, as well as in Charleville, Cunnamulla and Rockhampton.

    The Premier also told the Summit to reduce demand, by getting more people off Ice, a separate $6 million investment was bolstering for drug intervention teams and had increased the number of specialist clinicians in key hospitals.

    “We have established three new Drug and Alcohol Brief Intervention Teams – or DABITs - in Logan, Townsville and Rockhampton Hospitals and enhanced existing teams at Gold Coast University and Robina Hospitals, and complement the DABIT team at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital.

    “By placing staff in the Emergency Departments of hospitals to identify people who may be on ice, we can make sure that ice addicts are receiving the correct treatment.

    “We know that often, ice-addicted people have health issues related to Ice but not directly caused by the drug. This can bring them – but not necessarily their ice addition – to the attention of the health system.”

    “Beyond our hospitals and emergency departments, we have added clinical positions specifically for youth in Rockhampton and the Gold Coast to deliver services for young Queenslanders.”

    The Palaszczuk Government has also added new clinical positions in Cooktown and Weipa to deliver services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients, with clinical positions in Logan to provide intensive case management for parents using substances.

    “We are also supporting state-wide workforce education, training and support activities,” she said.

    The Premier said to reduce supply, the Government had implemented tough new laws which increase the maximum jail term for drug trafficking from 20 to 25 years.

    “We are implementing a specialist drug court to appropriately handle ice-related offences,” she said.

    “We will also be increasing security measures for those frontline staff in our hospitals, so that our first responders who too often encounter the chaotic and violent behavior of ice addicts will be protected.

    “These measures, when taken together, are far more than just throwing the book at drug dealers. This government has a tough line on drug dealers, but importantly, we’re also looking at stopping people getting addicted in the first place.”

    • The Government’s draft action plan is open for public until 19 May. Link to consultation and the “Action on ice: The Queensland Government’s draft plan to address use and harm caused by crystal methamphetamine”, which was released by the Government in February.

    Media contact: Geoff Breusch (Premier’s office) 0417 272 875