on air now

Needle exchange program “saving lives” but questions remain over injecting facility opening times

Reason Party leader Fiona Patten isn’t worried users are snubbing Melbourne’s safe-injecting facility after a disturbing incident recently came to light.

CCTV footage shows a worker at the facility shooting up in a private driveway, with the incident occurring less than 200 metres away from safe injecting rooms.

But while Ms Patten refuted suggestions the facility was failing, she told Tom Elliott the specific episode captured on camera was “not acceptable”.

“There’s no question the needle exchange program is saving lives,” she said.

“But the health department has some questions to answer on the supervised injecting area – they refuse to extend the (opening) hours and assume that drug users are using drugs during working hours.”

Tom said quality of life for the residents and workers in the North Richmond area was diminished as a result of the facility.

Click PLAY to hear more on 3AW Drive