Plans to introduce safe injecting rooms in Victoria shot down – 7th Feb – Yahoo 7 News

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The Premier and Opposition leader have shot down plans for a safe injecting room where drug addicts can get clean needles and medical assistance.

Sex Party leader Fiona Patten had been pushing for an 18-month trial in North Richmond amid support from community leaders and medical experts.

Ms Patten said the injecting rooms would free up ambulance resources and reduce the number of needles left in public places – something the current needle exchanges fail to address.

“Needle exchanges are just blindly sending homeless, mentally ill people out to use illegal drugs in car parks, people’s doorways and in public toilets,” Ms Patten told AAP on Tuesday.

“Nurses and doctors say this is not a correct duty of care.”

The injecting room has been touted for North Richmond, where 34 people died from drug overdoses in 2016 alone.

The Sex Party had called for a trial to be run at the same time as a parliamentary committee, which will take two years.

“If we wait another two years, we’re looking at another 70 people dying in North Richmond,” Ms Patten said.

A safe injecting room in Sydney’s Kings Cross, which was set up in 2001, handles about 200 injections a day and has not had any overdose deaths.

 

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