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15 community action programmes to fight drugs

Tuesday 17 February 2004 12.30 p.m. Media release

15 community action programmes to fight drugs

Associate Health Minister Jim Anderton has announced the locations of 15 new Community Action on Youth & Drugs (CAYAD) programmes to combat illicit drug use.

"Fighting the war against P and other illicit drugs has just become a little easier because 15 of the worst affected communities around New Zealand will now have action on the ground to help reduce drugs from communities," the Progressive leader said.

"The drug problem, and P in particular, is a serious challenge to all New Zealanders. Every family and every community has an interest in combating this serious social problem. This is why the Progressives bid for the funding to pay for these new community action programmes," Jim Anderton said.

"The coalition government's war against drugs is multifaceted. At one level, we are aiming to reduce supply by toughening up the penalties on the peddlers of dangerous drugs and their precursors. At another level, we are increasing treatment services to reduce the harm drugs cause.

"And the third level is aimed at reducing the demand for drugs and that is where these community programmes come in," Jim Anderton said.

"The new community action teams on drugs are modelled on successful CAYAD programmes in Opotiki, Hokianga, Whangaruru, Nelson and Kaitaia. The new programmes will be based in: Whangarei; West Auckland; Waitakere City; Clendon/Manurewa; Central Auckland; Otahuhu; Otara/Papatoetoe; Huntly/Morrinsville; Tauranga/West Bay of Plenty; Whakatane; Tairawhiti; Horowhenua; Whanganui; Dunedin; a regional service based in Hastings.

"The CAYAD project brings local communities and researchers from SHORE (Social Health Outcomes, Research and Evaluation) and the Whariki Maori research team, together to fight the drug problem at the front line", said Jim Anderton.

Police apprehension statistics, school drug suspension and stand-down figures, Ministry of Social Development data on social deprivation and youth unemployment statistics and advice from SHORE and the Ministry of Health were used in the selection of the 15 sites.

ENDS

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