Joint Media Release with Minister For Health The Hon. Greg Hunt MP and Minister for Rural Health Senator the Hon. Bridget McKenzie
The Coalition Government is continuing to take action to combat the scourge of ice and other illicit drugs with more Local Drug Action Teams set to rollout across Australia.
Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, said that applications are now open for the third round of the Local Drug Action Team (LDAT) programme, which helps to bring the community together to develop local plans and activities to prevent and reduce the harm being caused by drugs and alcohol in their regions.
“LDAT members could include representatives from local councils, schools, police, youth services, primary health services and treatment services, community groups, non-government organisations,” Senator Scullion said.
“Any organisation with an interest in tackling drug and alcohol issues in their community is encouraged to apply.”
Health Minister Greg Hunt said that the Local Drug Action Teams is a key measure within the Coalition Government’s $298 million National Ice Action Strategy to combat illicit drug and alcohol use.
“The National Ice Taskforce recognised that taking action at the local level and building community engagement and capacity is vital to reducing the harms that alcohol and other drugs have on individuals, families and communities,” Minister Hunt said.
Minister for Rural Health, Senator Bridget McKenzie, has welcomed the latest round of LDATs acknowledging that regional communities are often the hardest hit when it comes to epidemics such as ‘ice’ addiction.
“Communities are working hard to establish and implement preventive and support services and this latest round of LDATs are assisting communities further,” Minister McKenzie said.
“The Government is encouraging regional health care providers to apply to become an LDAT. Expertise in drug and alcohol issues is not a prerequisite to form a LDAT.”
Senator Scullion said the Alcohol and Drug Foundation will help new LDATs to develop and implement action plans targeted to their local needs.
“There are now 80 LDATs across Australia representing more than 300 partnerships, but many more communities can benefit from this program,” Senator Scullion said.
“Successful applicants will initially receive $10,000 to help them to develop a local action plan. Once the plan is finalised, LDATs can apply to receive up to an additional $30,000 in their first year (and then $40,000 a year) to support delivery of local activities.”
Examples of activities that an LDAT might deliver in communities include:
- raising awareness of the dangers of methamphetamine (also known as ‘ice’) and encouraging users to seek help;
- working with vulnerable people to improve their current situation through education or employment services;
- providing support and information to parents and carers to enable them to talk about alcohol and other drug issues with their children; and
- developing local solutions for reducing violence and other harm related to alcohol and other drugs in public places.
The Coalition Government is committed to combating the scourge of ice and we encourage more organisations to apply to join the LDAT program, to drive change at a local level.
Applications for round three of the LDAT program close 19 February 2018. There will be further opportunities to be part of the program later this year and in 2019.
For more information visit www.adf.org.au/ldat