This week, I co-led the launch of a public campaign to urge the Victorian government to implement drug checking in Victoria. We launched a statement signed by 77 organisations on the steps of parliament on Monday. The statement was led by VAADA and written by myself and Isabelle Volpe from RMIT University. Harm Reduction Victoria and Students for Sensible Drug Policy also contributed to the campaign, and on the day we also heard from Debbie Warner, from Apod Support representing the family perspective, and Daniel Robinson Croft, youth advocate at YSAS.
The Victorian statement demonstrates support from a wide range of social and community organisations. These include professional societies representing medical and pharmaceutical sectors, such as the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners and the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.
Isabelle and I also published a longer article in The Conversation on Monday about this campaign and the argument for drug checking.
Following is a selection of the media coverage:
- Neil Mitchell, Oct 23, 3AW Melbourne, Mornings with Neil Mitchell, ‘‘Simple and pragmatic approach’: The push for a ‘drug checking’ system in Melbourne’, 8:34am. HTML.
- Raf Epstein, Oct 23, ABC Radio Melbourne, Melbourne Mornings, ‘Victorian health organisations call for drug testing to reduce deaths’, 8:50am. HTML.
- Ewa Staszewska, Oct 23, SBS News, ‘Debbie’s son overdosed. She thinks this state’s push for drug testing is a ‘no brainer’’. HTML.
- Frank Bonaccorso, Oct 23, 2ser 107.3 and The Wire, ‘Health agencies urge Victorian government to implement drug testing’. HTML.
- Monique Patterson, Oct 24, The Standard, ‘WRAD Health backs call for drug checking system to save lives’. HTML.
- Will Keech, Oct 26, Geelong Advertiser, Groups in push for drug testing. Bid to stop overdoses, p. 18. Also ‘‘Concerned’ Geelong organisations sign statement in support of drug checking’, HTML.
- Jenny Denton, Oct 26, Bendigo Advertiser, ‘BCHS lends voice to call for pill testing to prevent overdoses’. HTML.