The Andrews Labor Government is working with the community and local health services to tackle the drug ice, with almost $25 million for extra support services distributed across the state as part of the Ice Action Plan.
Minister for Mental Health, Martin Foley, joined the MPs for Wendouree and Buninyong, Sharon Knight and Geoff Howard, as well as health professionals and community leaders in Ballarat today to announce a package of $24.6 million to expand treatment services, support families and strengthen communities.
The new Ice Action Plan funding consists of:
- $18 million over four years to treat an extra 500 Victorians with ice addictions each year. The funding will expand innovative rehabilitation services for people living in rural and regional communities and in metropolitan growth areas.
- $4.7 million over four years to expand support services for families coping with ice use, and a new family drug education program to help families recognise when someone has a drug problem and how to support them to get treatment. This more than doubles existing support for families.
- $1.8 million in one-off grants for the 20 busiest Needle and Syringe Programs and funding for part-time staff to expand after-hours access and reduce harm for injecting ice users
- $130,000 for the first round of 13 projects to help community groups tackle ice in their local area over the next year, with more projects to be funded each year over the next three years.
The funding is part of the Victorian Government’s $45.5 million Ice Action Plan, announced by Premier Daniel Andrews in March this year, to reduce the demand, supply and harm of ice.
The broader suite of Ice Action Plan initiatives are being collaboratively developed and implemented by health, education and law enforcement professionals to make sure the money is spent in the most targeted and effective fashion.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Mental Health, Martin Foley
“The Andrews Labor Government’s $45.5 million Ice Action Plan is delivering on our commitment to support families, communities and individuals battling with this highly addictive drug.”
“There is no single solution to stop ice – it takes a coordinated approach. This funding supports local communities and health services to deliver a range of new, effective initiatives to tackle ice in their community.”
“Different people need different kinds of drug treatment. The $18 million for innovative rehabilitation programs will ensure treatment for more than 500 people a year – treating their drug problems early, and keeping them close to their existing support networks.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020