Politicians, groups respond to recent changes to the State Government's Meth Task Force

Leaders in Bunbury have praised recent changes to the State Government's $171.4 million Meth Task Force program.

Community forums, held across metropolitan and regional areas, provided personal accounts about the impact of meth use. 

Seventy meetings – with over 500 community members – contributed to the task force’s latest report which had more than 50 recommendations.

Part of the government’s Meth Action Plan, the Police and Mental Health Co-response program will be expanded to cover four areas across Perth. 

A one-stop, 24-hour support service will be implemented as a result of the report. 

The government is also planning a trial of compulsory crisis intervention across the state. 

Doors Wide Open operating manager Lina Pugh said the program was essential in decreasing meth usage. 

“The biggest thing that has come out of it is that they want to change the language around how we talk about methamphetamine,” she said. 

“One of the big things that needs to happen is that regional WA needs to be included in any plans they have.

“Quite often, we get things coming out from the government that regional WA misses out on. 

“We need the services here was much as the metropolitan areas do. 

“Bunbury assists the greater South West. There’s a lot of pressure on the services already available because it’s such a big area. 

“In Bunbury, we need to have our services expanded and we need a rehabilitation centre.

“We need look at how Bunbury can be better serviced so we can continue to help the regional areas.”

Ms Pugh said Doors Wide Open relied on government support. 

“If we weren’t getting wages, we’d probably be looking at closing down,” she said. 

“We rely very heavily on what comes out of this Meth Task Force plan to make sure we can stay open.” 

South West MLC Adele Farina said: “I am on the record with my long-held view that methamphetamine and other drugs and alcohol problems are a health issue.”

“I welcome the finding of the Meth Task Force that meth use must be viewed as a health and community issue, and cannot be solved by law enforcement alone.

“The government is carefully considering the recommendations of the recently released Meth Action Plan Task Force Final Report and its full response is expected to be released next year.” 

Contact the Alcohol and Drug Support Line on (08) 9442 5000.

Read more: