Barnardos highlights service gaps for children and families impacted by Ice use

Barnardos Australia was recently invited to comment on issues raised at the Special Commission of Inquiry into the Drug ‘Ice’.

The Commission was established to investigate the nature, prevalence and impact of the drug in NSW. The Commission will deliver its final report to the NSW Government in October 2019.

The focus of Barnardos’ submission reflected the agency’s depth of knowledge of working with special population groups who have experienced greater harms from amphetamine-type stimulants (ATS) use when compared to users in the community more generally. The submission highlighted:

  • Clients with drug usage often report trauma being a catalyst for their drug usage.
  • Rural locations do not have the same access and availability as metropolitan centres to drug rehabilitation or detoxification units. For example, specialised services for families impacted by ATS use are extremely scarce or non-existent in Central Western NSW
  • ATS use within vulnerable populations impacted by small town gossiping, lack of anonymity within those small towns as well as a stigma and shame that is different to cannabis use.
  • There are limited services offered specifically to young people around drug addiction and specifically ATS use.
  • It is our strong view that current services and programs are inadequate for the needs of Indigenous families affected by ATS.
  • Improvement may come if program design centres around supports or services that are ‘wrap around,’ in one place.

You can read Barnardos Australia’s submission here.

Other public submissions can be accessed here.


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