17.1 C
Byron Shire
September 29, 2023

Rethinking drug policy key to helping people

Latest News

Feros responds to Expression of Interest announcement

The announcement earlier today that the Minister for Crown Lands, Steve Kamper, started the Expressions of Interest (EOI) process for Feros Village Byron Bay has drawn a response from the Feros Care board that still sees the facility in terms of a 'closure'. 

Other News

School holidays: farmers’ market fun

It’s an image still with me, the little boy dancing in front of the stage, face split into a smile of pure joy, orange balloon floating from his fingers, his father bopping alongside.

A moment in history

I wanted to express my feelings on this very important time in the history of the world. The Voice is...

Crash following alleged pursuit – Murwillumbah

A vehicle has crashed following an alleged pursuit at Murwillumbah yesterday. About 9.30am (Wednesday, 27 September, 2023), officers attached to...

Urban increase blueprint unveiled for Byron Shire

meeting that, if eventually adopted, could see upscaled urban development across the Shire via ‘infill, new release, existing zoned vacant land and living differently’.

Cruel Sea return gig supports Wildlife Hospital, October 21

For their first gig in ten years, The Cruel Sea will headline a fundraising event for Wild Aid 2023, in association with Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital and Bluesfest.

Misanthropic disGrace

Hannah Grace’s recent letter ‘Benefits of microplastic’ might be considered a sick joke, but over the years misanthropy has...

Greens MP Cate Faehrmann launching a new campaign for drug law reform in NSW.

Eve Jeffery

There has been a lot of debate about the issue of drugs and pill testing in recent months with many believing that the laws should be changed.

Greens MP and Drug Law Reform and Harm Reduction spokesperson Cate Faehrmann says she is launching a new campaign for drug law reform in NSW. The campaign has four demands: allowing pill testing services at mobile and fixed sites; regulating and taxing cannabis; decriminalising the personal use/possession of all drugs, and; replacing the current Roadside Drug Testing Scheme to testing for impairment.

Laws failing

Ms Faehrmann says that politicians should have the courage to admit that our drug laws aren’t working.

‘Our drug laws are a colossal failure, costing lives and wasting hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money each year,’ she said.

‘I know the Premier likes to think that “just say no” when it comes to drugs works, but it doesn’t, and it never will. So it’s up to decision-makers to put in place measures to reduce any harm associated with taking illegal drugs.’

Ms Faehrmann says it’s time we all fessed up about the nature and extent of illegal drug use in NSW. ‘Heavy-handed policing is not going to keep young people at music festivals safe this summer,’ she said. ‘Pill testing works and it’s time the Premier had the courage to acknowledge that. If she won’t act before this summer, then I’ll be asking the Parliament to support the Greens bill to trial pill-testing in NSW.

‘A growing number of experts, including former police commissioners and state premiers, agree that the single most effective way to reduce harm from illegal drugs is to stop treating drug use as a crime.

‘That’s why the Greens will introduce a bill to decriminalise all drugs and treat drug use as a health issue, not a criminal one.’

Ms Faehrmann, who recently undertook a self-funded tour to Portugal to study its groundbreaking drug laws, will host drug law reform community forums in Mullumimby and Lismore. She will discuss her findings as well as talk about truth-telling, drug decriminalisation, legalising cannabis, and pill testing in NSW which she says is all part of the Greens Rethink, Reform campaign.

‘Governments around the world are looking into, or have already legalised cannabis, including Canada, Uruguay and many US states, and New Zealand is holding a referendum on the issue next year. There is growing acknowledgment that nearly all of the harm associated with cannabis use is because it is illegal.’

Ms Faehrmann says she will be introducing legislation to tax and regulate cannabis. ‘This will provide the framework for a cannabis industry in NSW and legalise its use,’ she said.

Local drug forums

The forums are free and will be held in Lismore this Thursday, October 10 from 6pm till 8pm at the Lismore City Bowling Club, and Mullumbimby this Friday, from 6.30pm till 8.30pm at the Mullumbimby Civic Hall. For more information visit: www.catefaehrmann.org.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Weed exit and smiley koalas get support

Weed and smiley koalas were on the minds of Tweed Shire Councillors and staff at last week’s council meeting.

Another wallaby death on beach prompts calls on dog owners 

A Byron local says a dead wallaby found on Belongil beach last Saturday had all the hallmarks of a dog attack, and is calling on the public to be more vigilant and for authorities to step up to help protect native wildlife.

A win for Feros Village Byron Bay residents

A whole community can expel a sigh of relief at the breaking news that months of distress and sadness can now become part of history – this morning the Minister for Crown Lands, Steve Kamper, has announced that services providers for aged care are advised that Expressions of Interest (EOI) are now open for Feros Village Byron Bay.

How do you rate the media rating system?

Parents are being asked to have a say on whether Australia’s media classification system is effective in informing decisions around age-appropriate films and video games for children.