darren.chester.mp@aph.gov.au 1300 131 785
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The Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester says extra funding for drug addiction treatment services could save local lives.

Mr Chester, who secured $3 million for a residential drug rehabilitation centre under construction near Bairnsdale, said most people knew someone impacted by addiction.

“There are families across Gippsland who have been devastated by illegal drugs and alcohol use and all levels of government have a role to play in tackling the problem,” Mr Chester said.

“The need is clear and we must make sure that help is available when people seek it.  That’s how lives can be saved and we can reduce the harm caused by these substances.”

Mr Chester today welcomed additional Federal Government funding to help ensure people who need help for their addiction can get treatment.

“Addiction to ice, alcohol and other drugs is a continuing problem for communities across Australia – and Gippsland is not immune,” Mr Chester said. “We need to ensure the appropriate services are available when people need them.”

The Minister for Regional Services, Senator Bridget McKenzie, announced funding of $61 million for Primary Health Networks to continue to commission treatment services.

“To date, the National Ice Action Strategy has successfully delivered more than 400 treatment services across Australia – based on the needs of local communities,” Ms McKenzie said.

“Individuals, families and communities can be hit hard by someone’s substance misuse – its effects are felt deeply and can continue for years.

“This multi-million dollar funding boost will save and improve lives devastated by drugs including ice.

“We are committed to making sure people are able to access appropriate treatment support when and where they need it.

“The Primary Health Networks commission targeted treatment services based on local needs and priorities in their community and this $61 million boost means the networks can continue their great work.”

The funding is part of the broader treatment funding under the National Ice Action Strategy, which provides $241.5 million for Primary Health Networks to commission additional drug and alcohol treatment services to meet local need.

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