19 February 2014
The NSW Council of Churches has welcomed the O’Farrell Government’s response to a Legislative Council inquiry report into drug and alcohol treatment.
Council President, the Reverend Dr Ross Clifford, said the Government’s priorities in addressing alcohol abuse were comprehensive and would do much to tackle alcohol-related harm in our community, especially among teens and young adults.
In addition to earlier reforms including a new state-wide 10pm closing time for all bottle shops and liquor stores, and a community awareness and media campaign to address the culture of binge drinking and associated drug and alcohol related violence, the Government has supported all recommendations in a recent Inquiry report on drug and alcohol treatment released by the NSW Legislative Council General Purpose Standing Committee No. 2. Recommendations include:
- calling for a stronger national response to the problem of alcohol abuse;
- considering the expansion of the availability of naloxone and the provision of training measures to prevent opioid overdose fatalities;
- conditional funding of a randomised control trial comparing naltrexone implants with other licensed treatments used to treat opioid dependence;
- ensuring that funding levels keep pace with the increasing demand for drug and alcohol treatment services;
- providing additional funding to ensure that all students are given the opportunity to participate in approved drug and alcohol education programs.
“These new commitments by the O’Farrell Government, along with previous reforms announced in 2013, will go a long way to improving the lives of those with substance abuse issues and their families, and help curb alcohol-related violence in trouble spots in NSW,” Dr Clifford said.
Media contact Rod Benson 0412 421 678