The RSA campaigns for serious reforms to current Australian drug laws. The RSA believes legislation regarding drug use should be guided by harm minimisation, and should embrace the amassing amount of evidence, collected within Australia and around the world, that suggests most current laws regulating illicit drug use compound the harm caused by drugs, rather than alleviate the issues surrounding the misuse of drugs.
In addition, the RSA urges for a more open and rational conversation regarding legalisation of ‘recreational’ drugs.
Inquiry into Drug Law Reform
In our submission to the Inquiry into Drug Law Reform by the Victorian Parliament’s Committee on Law Reform, Road and Community Safety, the RSA calls for rational drug laws. Read our submission here. The Committee will inquire into, consider and report, no later than 9 March 2018 on:
- The effectiveness of laws, procedures and regulations relating to illicit and synthetic drugs and the misuse of prescription medication in minimising drug-related health, social and economic harm; and
- The practice of other Australian states and territories and overseas jurisdictions and their approach to drug law reform and how other positive reforms could be adopted into Victorian law.
We at the RSA will be monitoring the inquiry as it progresses, and will continue putting pressure on parliamentarians to engage in rational and evidence-based discussions regarding Australia’s drug laws and the need for change.
Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Amendment (Pilot Medically Supervised Injecting Centre) Bill 2017
The RSA is also working on releasing a position statement to support a proposed bill in the Victorian parliament regarding introducing medically-supervised injection centres. The proposed trial has massive support across the criminal justice, community and medical sectors, including from the Australian Medical Association, the Victorian Drug and Alcohol Association, the Salvation Army, the Pharmacy Guild, the former head of the Police Association, coroners, and the National Drug Research Institute.
Our support is based on the measurable success of similar centres both domestically (Sydney) and abroad (e.g. Vancouver, Portugal).
For more information regarding the case for drug law reform, see:
- Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation – adlrf.org.au
- Drug Policy Australia – www.drugpolicy.org.au
- Families and Friends for Drug Law Reform – www.ffdlr.org.au
- International Support Don’t Punish Campaign – www.supportdontpunish.org
In this video, former head of the Australian Federal Police, Mick Palmer, lends his support for sensible drug law reform: