south easterThe World Today

ALISON CALDWELL: She says the new Liberal Government in New South Wales continues to support the injecting rooms in Kings Cross.

And its put people in contact with services and drug treatment but also things like mental health services that they nsouth easterThe World Todayeed, so were very interested in how that might work here too.

TED BAILLIEU: It wont be going ahead as r as were concerned and as r as were concerned if we say no it wont go ahead.

VOX POP 3: You know, the argument about its a good idea but not in my backyard lls apart because Pauls right. In our streets 24/7 of these sad, pathetic and sometimes threatening and difficult people who have terrible addictions and south eastern sydney area health servicethis idea will get them off the streets and get them under medical supervision.

Local businesses agree that heroin is a serious problem in the area but warn that an injecting room would be a honey pot that would only attract more users to the streets.

ALISON CALDWELL: Last night the local Yarra Council voted in support of trialling a supervised drug injecting room.

VOX POP 2: If it gets the dealing and the heroin use off the street and away from residential areas Im all in vour.

And we know now from the 91 services that operate around the world that they clearly save lives, they take drug injecting off the streets and they put people into contact with treatment and rehabilitation services.

Last year I saw some people shooting up in a car in front of my house and its a terrace house, so that was maybe two or three metres from my front door and I regularly see needles and you see dealers all the time.

But b) if it saves just one life I think its definitely a well worth activity too – well worth a trial.

ALISON CALDWELL: The major stumbling block for the council is the State Government which opposes drug injecting rooms.

VOX POP: a) From a personal point of view its just going to clean the street up and make it look – make it a lot safer.

What I believe is if it is successful you know in like Sydney, weve got the Parramatta, its years ago the problems seem like that but they got the camera and its worked well.

MARIANNE JAUNCEY: The businesses in the area, originally when we first opened about 58 per cent of those supported the service.

ALISON CALDWELL: If the callers to ABC Local Radio in Melbourne this morning are anything to go by people overwhelmingly support the idea of trialling a supervised drug injecting room in Richmond.

south easterThe World Today,MP3 Audio for Monday 30 May, 2011The World Today is a comprehensive current afirs program which backgrounds, analyses, interprets and encourages debate on events and issues of interest and importance to all Australians.

And so we understand that in Sydney the supervised injecting cility has got a great deal of that behaviour out of the laneways and the car parks and the stairwells.

ALISON CLARKE: We have a lot of problems with syringes in laneways, with people injecting in public and residents, including children observing that behaviour, and people overdosing, sometimes people finding a body somewhere in a laneway, in a car park, and its very distressing.

You know, if you provide one of the injecting rooms there is also meaning invite them – I mean welcome them, you know, and more drug, more dealings to our area.

DALE SMEDLEY: Its a no-win situation. When a minority group starts to takeover and rearrange the amenity and the safety of mothers and children, just everyday folk who walk up and down the street, thats when youve got the problem.

ALISON CALDWELL: But those who support the idea of an injecting room in Richmond point to the only one allowed in Australia. Sydneys injecting rooms have been there for 10 years.

An hour of current afirs background and debate from Australia and the world every Monday to Friday, 12:10 pm, ABC Local Radio and Radio National.

Because these are the very people, like the previous callers, that live and work in an area where they dont want to be stepping over bodies, they dont want to be stepping over syringes.

VINNIE LEE: They have to move. They have to move. The CCTV of course help to police and could help us.

They recognise theres a problem and its one of the reasons why we want to have more police on the streets.

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