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Below is a letter we received recently that we thought we would share with readers.

As P&C President of a regional high school and Chairperson of Newcastle Community Drug Action Team, the above mind boggling short sighted, “cuts” appear to make a mockery of the NSW Premier’s so called “war on drugs”.

There is no denying that the public sector has an obligation to remain effective and efficient.

One dollar invested in prevention is worth hundreds on the costs of intervention, treatment and enforcement of AOD irresponsible over supply, misuse and addiction. Schools and teachers as “significant others”, provide a primary element in effective and strategic AOD education including a focus on “up -stream” resilience building and critical thinking that becomes integrated into all pivotal stages of the curriculum as children progress through schooling.

This in turn requires substantial ongoing research, up to date resources and coordination best management by a well-funded central public unit supporting regional public education AOD experts/advisors.

Perhaps the NSW government should put a levy on the alcohol producers, promoters and suppliers to pay for the critically important resourcing of the Department’s Drug and Alcohol Education and Prevention Unit that bases its delivery programs and resources on the best and latest available independent scientific evidence.

Ideally, a coordinated and well – funded national approach to school/parent integrated AOD education programs would be a major achievement. We must however, persuade and support the NSW government to urgently review this above calamitous decision.

Rgds tony

Tony Brown
Coalition Newcastle inner city resident groups, small businesses and concerned citizens