A NEW APPROACH

For more than half a century, governments have aggressively pursued a disastrous “war on drugs” policy that criminalises a health problem and has only succeeded in making things worse.

These policies are causing harm and are killing young people. It’s time for a complete re-think. But the old parties don’t have the courage to take this issue on.

The Greens are leading a new, realistic and evidence-based approach to drug policy, one that reflects the reality of people’s’ choices to use drugs in Australia. In particular, we support pill testing at music festivals and in the community, the removal of sniffer dogs at music festivals and in our clubs, and regulating cannabis for adult use.

The Greens’ drug policy revolution will restore this country’s reputation as a leader in innovative drug policy by treating drug use as the health issue that it is, rather than the criminal issue other parties think it is. Only The Greens care about having an honest conversation about drugs to minimise harm and save lives.

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COMMUNITY PILL TESTING

Pill testing saves lives. Every year, young Australians lose their lives after taking dangerous pills. We can put a stop to these tragedies by creating facilities for drugs to be tested and the results to be safely communicated to the people who may choose to take them. One pill tested means many lives saved.

NO DRUG SNIFFER DOGS AT FESTIVALS

The use of sniffer dogs at music festivals demonstrates how out of touch government policy does far more harm than good. We call for no more sniffer dog use at festivals and the redirection of resources into more effective strategies as part of our new drug policy.

SAFE INJECTING FACILITIES

Sydney’s Medically Supervised Injecting Centre has demonstrated for years that safe injecting facilities save lives, minimise injuries and provide a path into health care and social services for vulnerable people. The Greens will fund more injecting facilities in areas which demonstrate the greatest need for support.

LEGALISED RECREATIONAL CANNABIS

35% of us have tried cannabis or used it socially, but right now this choice could get you a criminal record just for having a small amount of weed in your possession. Our campaign to legalise cannabis use would regulate and tax cannabis use to reduce harm, increase protection for vulnerable people, and break the business model of criminal gangs.

If five decades of “war on drugs” failure have demonstrated anything, it’s that we cannot arrest our way out of this issue. After generations of stigmatisation and underground use, we need a new approach.

Our drug reform policy calls for the need to change our dysfunctional law and order approach and move towards the successful harm minimisation models of overseas countries like Portugal and Uruguay.

The current approach to reducing the harm that illicit drugs cause in our community is not working. And right now, many of the things we are doing to address this issue are making it worse rather than better.

The Greens recognise that when we treat personal drug use as a criminal issue, we use vital resources to punish the individual rather than focusing on illicit drug manufacturers and distributors who are the real criminals. We are also distracted from the opportunities to reduce drug users’ exposure to harm and often, avoidable deaths.

The Greens will restore Australia’s reputation as a leader on innovative drug policy through the establishment of a Harm Reduction Innovation Fund.

By investing in harm reduction, we create better health outcomes for drug users and for our communities as a whole.

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