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Bennelong and Western Sydney to receive $5.19M for local ICE Rehab Services

Western Sydney Primary Health Network will receive $5.19 million for local drug and alcohol rehabilitation services as part of the Government’s plan to combat the scourge of ice in communities across the country.

The funding will help to reduce demand for ice and reduce addict-based crime by supporting local rehabilitation services to help get addicts off ice and out of the drug market.

John Alexander MP, Member for Bennelong, today welcomed the new funding which will help to combat the devastating impact that ice is having across the region.

“Ice is ruining lives, destroying communities, and does not discriminate.

“This money will provide much needed services to people in our region that are grappling with ice addiction and substance misuse.

“I have spoken to countless families across our community who are dealing with the fallout of this insidious drug, many of whom are concerned about a lack of available treatment and rehab services,” John Alexander said.

While treatment delivery is traditionally the responsibility of state governments, the Federal Coalition Government has recognised the urgency of this situation, and acted.

The funding for local services is part of the Coalition Government’s response to the National Ice Taskforce report, which was handed down in December last year. The Western Sydney Primary Health Network will be responsible for commissioning services with the funding, which will flow from July 1.

Minister for Rural Health Fiona Nash said it was clear that we cannot simply “arrest our way out of this problem.”

“Police everywhere are doing a great job and making record numbers of busts,” Minister Nash said.

“Police and the National Ice Taskforce have recommended we also focus on reducing demand.

“If we want to break the drug dealer’s business model, we have to smash the demand for their terrible product, and this funding will help to do just that.”

In addition to funding for rehabilitation services, local volunteer groups will soon be able to access grants from the Federal Government to deliver local education and prevention programmes across the community.

The Coalition is also providing support to more than 1,200 community sporting clubs to deliver prevention messages about ice with a focus on regional Australia.

These programmes are part of the Coalition Government’s comprehensive $300m plan to tackle ice across Australia.