The Victorian Greens have thrown their support behind an open letter released today calling for a medically supervised injecting room (MSIR) to be established in Melbourne’s CBD.
The letter has been signed by nearly 20 of Victoria's peak medical bodies and unions, and puts renewed pressure on the Victorian Labor Government to stop dragging its heels and set up a MSIR in the city as a matter of urgency.
Residents of the City of Melbourne have been waiting years for the Labor Government to deliver on its promise of a medically supervised injecting room.
And for each day that passes without this life-saving service, people are dying from overdoses, lives are being put at risk and drug harm continues.
The Greens say today’s letter calling for an overdose prevention centre and wrap-around facilities in the city must compel the Andrews Government to finally act.
Victorian Greens’ drug harm reduction spokesperson Aiv Puglielli said everyone should have access to this life-saving care and resuscitation.
He added that Melburnians had waited long enough, given an MSIR in the city had been promised three years ago.
In the meantime around 40 more people have needlessly lost their lives to overdose, drug harm has increased and the threat of fentanyl looms, making this service even more urgent.
The Greens have also called for Labor to open multiple injecting facilities across the state to ensure that people get help where they need it, and so that people don’t need to travel long distances to receive medical care.
Quotes attributable to Victorian Greens drug harm reduction spokesperson, Aiv Puglielli MLC:
“We know medically supervised injecting facilities save lives.
“The Victorian Labor Government must deliver on its promise to provide overdose prevention services in the City of Melbourne.
“People use injectable drugs. This is an undeniable fact and every day that there is not a medically supervised injecting room in Melbourne, more people will die and people’s lives are put at risk.”
Quotes attributable to Deputy Leader of the Victorian Greens, Ellen Sandell MP:
“If we’re serious about keeping our communities safer we need to follow expert health advice.
“Why is Labor keeping people in the dark and creating so much uncertainty for communities and people who need these services?
“Labor has delayed this decision for three years and created so much uncertainty, while people lose their lives and drug harm continues on our streets.
“Labor needs to be clear about when and where these facilities will open, and any facility needs to come with wrap-around services and be designed well, to ensure it is successful and saves lives.”