Tuesday, November 30, 2004


Senator BARTLETT (Queensland--Leader of the Australian Democrats) (3.43 p.m.)--At the request of Senator Allison, I move:

That the Senate--

(a)acknowledges that drug use within Australian prisons poses a considerable health risk to prisoners and the broader community;

(b)notes that:

(i)the Australian National Council on Drugs report, Supply, demand and harm reduction strategies in Australian prisons: Implementation, cost and evaluation, found that many injecting drug users spend considerable periods behind bars and that a history of drug use is far more common amongst prisoners than in the general population,

(ii)the report also identified a high prevalence of injecting drug use during incarceration and that high proportions of prison inmates report injecting drug use in the community once released, and

(iii)levels of hepatitis C in prisons are estimated to be up to 17 times greater than those in the general community; and

(c)calls on the Government to work collaboratively with the states and territories to develop and fund:

(i)a hepatitis B vaccination program for prisoners,

(ii)voluntary programs for prisoners for testing, counselling and treatment for HIV and other blood-borne viral infections, and

(iii)a trial needle and syringe exchange program, with rigorous evaluation, in an Australian prison.

Question agreed to.

Daele Healy
Adviser to Senator Andrew Bartlett
Leader of the Australian Democrats
Parliament House Canberra 2600
Ph: 02 6277 5724
Fax: 02 6277 3235
Mob: 0419 867 649

By Daele Healy 31 November 2004


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