North Richmond MSIC

ADF commends Victorian Government on MSIC Trial

On 31 October 2017, the Alcohol and Drug Foundation commended the Victorian Government for its decision to approve a pilot Medically Supervised Injecting Centre (MSIC).

“A pilot Medically Supervised Injecting Centre in North Richmond will save lives and give clients access to treatment services that are critical in helping them in their recovery journey,” said John Rogerson, CEO of the Alcohol and Drug Foundation.

With around 90 MSICs around the world, it’s indisputable that trialing one in North Richmond will reduce overdose deaths and provide clients access to much needed health and welfare services.

Read the ADF’s media release here.

Some recent history on this campaign

In February a coronial inquest was held into the death of a 34-year-old Victorian mother who overdosed in the toilet of a fast-food restaurant in North Richmond.

The inquest heard there were 172 heroin overdose deaths in Victoria last year – 34 of which died after buying heroin in the City of Yarra. Of those deaths, 19 were in the North Richmond area known as the “heroin rectangle”.

In handing down her findings, Coroner Jacqui Hawkins said a safe injecting facility in North Richmond was essential.

A medically supervised injection centre wouldn’t only save lives, it would:

  • Free-up police to tackle other law and order issues
  • Reduce the number of needles and syringes being left on the streets making the community safer
  • Reduce the number of ambulance call-outs to overdoses allowing them to attend other emergency situations
  • Reduce the number of incidents where members of the community are exposed to traumatic scenes of overdosing and people using drugs
  • Refer highly vulnerable people to various health and welfare services

In the past 30 years there have been more than 90 medically supervised injecting facilities set up across the globe, operating in 10 different countries – all of which are preventing deaths and creating pathways to treatment every day.

On the 7th September a parliamentary committee report looking into a pilot MSIC in North Richmond was tabled in the Victorian Parliament. Read our executive summary of the report below: