The Andrews Labor Government has launched the new $32 million Melbourne Drug Court which will make our community safer by driving down ice use and drug crime.

Premier Daniel Andrews attended the launch of the Melbourne Drug Court, which was funded through Stage 2 of the Ice Action Plan.

The Melbourne Drug Court supervises offenders whose drug dependency is linked to their crime. It offers them a final chance to get treatment and to stay drug and crime free – if they fail, they face prison.

It will complement the existing Drug Court at Dandenong and provide capacity for an additional 170 offenders to address their drug use. The funding includes increased support for agencies including Victoria Police, the health department, and clinical and legal service providers.

The program has proven it successfully reduces crime and makes the community safer. The two year recidivism rate for the Drug Court is 34 per cent lower than the mainstream justice system.

The Labor Government has delivered more than $100 million through Stages 1 and 2 of the Ice Action Plan which has expanded drug treatment services, support for families and additional resources for Victoria Police.

As part of the Ice Action Plan, face-to-face training is now being extended to justice, emergency service, child protection and education frontline workers to help them respond to people affected by the drug.

The training for nurses began rolling out in November, and this expansion will see half-day ice training provided to other frontline workers across the state.

40,000 frontline staff will receive the training over the next four years, which will give them the skills to respond safely and effectively to people who are affected by ice.

Quote attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews

“Ice ruins families and causes crime, and the Drug Court has proven that it not only turns people’s lives around – it makes the community safer.”

Quote attributable to Attorney-General Martin Pakula

The Drug Court will provide more effective sentencing options for serious drug-related offenders and will help to reduce recidivism by addressing the underlying causes of addiction.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Mental Health Martin Foley

“The first round of ice training for frontline workers was a great success, and we’re making sure that more staff have the skills to support patients and keep themselves safe.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy

“Face to face training will make sure our paramedics, doctors, nurses, police, child protection and education workers are getting the skills and support they need to manage and treat ice affected people safely.”