Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull Federal Member for Wentworth has welcomed Minister Keenan’s release of the first National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program Report which will change the way our nation fights the scourge of the drug, ice.
The Coalition Government provided the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) with a $3.6 million boost to detect ice hotspots, and collect data on drugs being used within our communities, following a recommendation by the National Ice Taskforce.
The analysis tested for methamphetamine, or ice, and 12 other illicit and licit substances including cocaine, MDMA, tobacco and alcohol at 51 sites across the country.
Crimes relating to ice continue to be a concern for local police, with strong links between those who commit drug offences and those committing other violent crimes.
“Drugs such as ice can have devastating consequences for entire communities, and putting a stop to it will require a community response,” Mr Turnbull said.
“This is critical baseline data, the first of nine tests to be conducted over the next three years, which will ensure we can better target our law enforcement and health responses, and monitor their progress.”
The Coalition Government is investing almost $300 million to support actions resulting from the National Ice Action Strategy to improve treatment, after care, education, prevention and community engagement.
We are also tackling the supply of ice through increased international cooperation, enhanced intelligence sharing, better controls of precursor chemicals and greater efforts to prevent ice reaching our regional and remote communities.
Methamphetamine, or ice, consumption in Western Australia and South Australia was higher than the national average, in both the capital cities and regional areas. High levels were also recorded in regional sites in Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania.
Cocaine use was the highest in New South Wales, almost double the second highest jurisdiction the Northern Territory, in terms of doses consumed per day. The ACT recorded the third highest use.
There is a high use of prescription medications fentanyl and oxycodone across all jurisdictions, particularly in regional Queensland, suggesting a potential diversion into the illicit market.
The National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program Report is available at: https://www.acic.gov.au/publications/intelligence-products/national-wastewater-drug-monitoring-program-report