Tackling drug abuse and welfare dependency was high on the agenda when local community service agencies met with Minister for Human Services Alan Tudge today when he visited Forde.
Federal Member for Forde Bert van Manen invited Minister Tudge to discuss the rollout of the Government’s drug testing trial in Logan, as well as further action the Government is taking to prevent drug abuse in local communities.
“The Australian Government is providing more help for people with drug abuse issues by investing in a range of treatment options to meet the different needs of people seeking help,” Mr van Manen said.
“The Commonwealth is committing more than $685 million over four years to reduce the impact of alcohol and other drug misuse on individuals, families and communities.
“In Logan, a key beneficiary is Lives Lived Well, in which this government is investing $5.2 million in 2017-18 for a range of drug and alcohol treatment services across Queensland.
“We know our local drug and alcohol services do a great job in our local community and the Government remains committed to supporting their good work, in every instance.”
Mr van Manen said today’s meeting was an opportunity for Minister Tudge to speak directly with the local service providers about Logan’s selection as a drug testing trial site as part of the Government’s welfare reform package.
Minister Tudge said the initiative was about removing any substance abuse barriers people may face to gaining meaningful employment.
“The trial is aimed at identifying those with a drug problem and helping them get off drugs and back into work,” Minister Tudge said.
“Almost a quarter of unemployed people last year took drugs. If they have a problem, they effectively exclude themselves from so many jobs which require employees to be drug-free.
“No one loses a cent from testing positive. However, they will be put onto a form of cashless welfare and be required to undertake treatment.
“We are aiming to have the trial up and running in Logan early next year.”