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Ryall: More drug rehab services needed

Hon Tony Ryall
National Party Health Spokesman

10 November 2005


Ryall: More drug rehab services needed

Lives will be lost unless the Government can ensure drug rehabilitation services are available so every addict can obtain treatment, says National’s Health spokesman, Tony Ryall.

Mr Ryall is commenting on reports that drug addicts are dying on waiting lists for rehabilitation after the closure of 10 residential treatment centres in the past 11 years.

”Drug offences, not including cannabis-related offences, have risen 91% since Labour became the Government in 1999, and violent crime has risen 13%.

“Behind these figures are real stories of fear, pain and personal tragedy. If addicts have to wait six months for help, then that's six months when they are at risk of doing crime and destroying their lives further.

”We can’t stand by and watch as people's lives are ruined by crime and drugs.

“Government failure is responsible for this unnecessary suffering. It must increase the number of residential drug rehabilitation places available. New Zealand needs enough rehab facilities so that every addict can obtain treatment.

”It has to be our goal to break the nexus between drugs and crime, and give addicts the chance to get clean.

”Crime costs New Zealand hundreds of millions of dollars, and more and more of that is because of drugs. To tackle the P epidemic we need good residential rehab facilities,” says Mr Ryall.

ENDS

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