ACL congratulates the Melbourne City Council for rejecting the Andrews government’s proposal to establish drug injecting room near the Queen Victoria Market.

The ACL also welcomes Deputy Lord Mayor Arron Wood’s effort to provide adequate consultation with the local residents, businesses and organisations.

“Churches near the Queen Victoria Market – with families, children and students among the congregation – were never consulted and they have grave concerns,” Victoria director Jasmine Yuen observed.

“As we have seen in the first trial site in North Richmond, a drug injecting room does not get people off drugs but leads to the increased drug use and drug trafficking. We applaud the Deputy Lord Mayor calling for alternative ways dealing with drug addicts and pathways that lead addicts out of drugs. A change in location is not enough. A change in policy is essential to reduce the spread of illicit drugs, particularly among local communities that do not presently have that problem."

The ACL calls on the City Council of Melbourne, the Victorian Government and the independent review panel led by former Police Commissioner Mr Ken Lay to consult widely with all local residents, businesses and community groups like churches in the vicinity.

“The second injecting room project should be scrapped entirely,” Mrs Yuen concluded. “Drug rehabilitation centres and programs must be funded and prioritised to reduce dependence on illicit drugs.”