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Hanmer Closure A Disaster For Youth

8 January 2002

The closure of Hanmer's programme for young drug and alcohol addicts is a disaster that will mean more young lives are wasted in unemployment and crime, National Social Services spokesperson Bob Simcock said today.

"Drug use is one of the biggest causes of youth unemployment. Young people with serious drug and alcohol problems are very hard to place in work until those problems have been resolved.

"New Zealand is desperately short of effective services to get very young people off drugs. The closure of any service in these circumstances is a tragedy.

"Any money saved by the Ministry of Health in closing this service will be wasted ten times over in the costs associated with unemployment and crime. If the Ministry of Health can't see the benefits in funding this then maybe the Child Youth and Family Service can.

"The Government needs to get its departments working together toward a common goal - the rehabilitation of addicted young people," Mr Simcock said.

Ends

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