Community

Getting tough on ice

TALKING DRUGS: A strong crowd gathered at the cultural centre on Monday night for a community meeting on how to combat ice in the community organised by Maranoa MP David Littleproud, with mayor Richard Marsh, Christine Richards, deputy mayor Fiona Gaske, MP David Littleproud, IOC St George Police Paul Tabrett and new drug counsellor Kamal Musitapa speaking at the meeting.
TALKING DRUGS: A strong crowd gathered at the cultural centre on Monday night for a community meeting on how to combat ice in the community organised by Maranoa MP David Littleproud, with mayor Richard Marsh, Christine Richards, deputy mayor Fiona Gaske, MP David Littleproud, IOC St George Police Paul Tabrett and new drug counsellor Kamal Musitapa speaking at the meeting. Laura Telford

TAKING control of the drug ice will take a whole of community approach, was the theme at Monday night's community Ice Forum run by Maranoa MP David Littleproud.

The forum was an opportunity for community members and service providers to connect and to find out what possible solutions and options can be sought for people in the Balonne Shire.

"I believe the solution lies in getting the right mix of services in each community,” Mr Littleproud said.

"Because what works in one community may not be suitable for another region and that's why a targeted and engaged approach is so important.”

A number of health and community representatives addressed the crowd, including Officer in Charge at St George Police, Senior Sergeant, Paul Tabrett.

"Speaking from my perspective, when I first came to St George two years ago, it was obvious there was a problem in town,” OIC Tabrett said.

"We are no worse than any other town in the state, but because we have a sense of community we all want something to be done.

"However from a police perspective it is very clear we can't arrest our way out of this problem, it will take a whole of community approach,” he said.

"Everybody in the community should be concerned about his problem, it does not discriminate and we need to draw upon each other, because if we do not get this response right, we will lose a generation of young people.”

While the meeting was a sombre reminder about how destructive ice can be, many left the meeting with a renewed sense of purpose that things can change, and with an open invitation to attend the next Local Drug Action Team (LDAT) meeting to be apart of the grassroots push to get an LDAT project coordinator to keep community interest up and investigate ways specific to the Balonne Shire to stop people getting on drugs.


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