For release: March 29, 2010

Jim Wallace

The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) today voiced concern that so-called ‘antidrug education’ in NSW actually appeared to be sending the wrong message to young people that illicit drug use was trendy.

ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said a controversial postcard describing cocaine as ‘nose candy’ was the latest in a number of drug prevention strategies gone wrong in the State and questioned the agenda behind these campaigns.

“Young people need to be given clear messages about the harm drugs can do to them and how to say ‘no’ to drugs. The NSW Government and health authorities can’t afford to be watering down this message – or, worse still, sending out messages which might make drugs seem appealing,” Mr Wallace said.

“One has to question what is behind these campaigns. The Government appears to be blindly following a harm minimisation philosophy without regard to the effects of the messages they are sending out on this issue.

“When illegal drugs are being promoted in a ‘fun’ way to teenagers it is clearly time to rethink the policy.”

Media Contact: Glynis Quinlan on 0408 875 979.