Budget brings relief for families

02 May 2018 Wangaratta Chronicle, Wangaratta VIC (General News) THE big budget news for the Rural City of Wangaratta was the announcement that a new 30-bed alcohol and drugs rehabilitation centre will be built here. In recent years, particularly through the highly publicised impact that the use of illicit drugs such as methylamphetamines has had on local families and the wider community, those most affected have called for the establishment of a local rehabilitation centre. Experts from our own Local Drug Action Team (LDAT), including senior police, health experts and affected families, have lobbied state politicians for a local centre as a top priority and the State Government has listened. Upper House MP Jaclyn Symes has strongly advocated for the rural city to house the proposed centre even before last years state budget announced funding for the purchase of land for such a centre in the Hume region. Its through the efforts of Ms Symes, the LDAT and particularly the families of those impacted by alcohol and other drugs who have never accepted no as an answer to get a local residential centre here in Wangaratta. While the rehabilitation centre cannot solve all the problems associated with the use of illicit drugs and the overuse of other drugs such as alcohol, it can go a long way to repairing those directly impacted who have sought help. The alternative in the past was for those seeking rehabilitation having to travel out of their own community to face the challenge on their own, which is never an ideal environment for success. There are other positives in the state budget for various groups and no doubt some who may have missed out on funding will be disappointed, but a local residential rehabilitation centre should be welcomed by the vast majority of the community as a vital element in the care and treatment of those affected by alcohol and other drugs.Licensed by Copyright Agency. You may only copy or communicate this work with a licence.