Greens spokesperson for Alcohol and Other Drugs Hon Alison Xamon MLC has today called on the Government to reverse its decision to cut funding to the Meth Helpline.
Ms Xamon said the cut backs, which have already led to the scaling back of counselling shifts from 75 to 65 per fortnight, would make it more difficult for people to access the support they need.
She said there needed to be more investment in the vital service, not less.
“We know that the helpline was taking 120 calls per week on average by April last year – just seven months after it began operating,” Ms Xamon said.
“The helpline is accessed by users themselves, as well as parents, partners and friends looking to find out how to support loved ones through substance abuse.
Ms Xamon said many callers have already reached crisis point by the time they reached out.
She said cut backs would make it more difficult for people to access timely support.
“This is an important frontline service that is already struggling to meet the demand – any cut backs will make it much more difficult for people to access the help and support that they need.
"The helpline is staffed by professionals who are trained to respond to co-occurring mental health and drug issues.
“It is a step in the wrong direction for the Government, particularly a Government that promised to seriously tackle the meth scourge, and I urge it to reverse its decision to cut funds from this vital service.”