Hon Andrea Mitchell BPE DipEd MLA

Hon Andrea Mitchell BPE DipEd MLA

Former Minister for Mental Health; Child Protection

    Public input sought on compulsory treatment

    9/12/2016 12:00 PM
    • Public urged to have their say on the draft legislation to ensure the best outcome
    • Proposal for people with severe substance addiction to undergo compulsory treatment for up to 12 weeks

    Draft legislation that would make it compulsory for some people with severe alcohol or drug addiction to undergo treatment was released today for public comment by the Liberal National Government.


    The legislation would require people who meet strict criteria to undergo compulsory treatment and support for up to 12 weeks.


    Mental Health Minister Andrea Mitchell said the proposed legislation would help people, who were a risk to themselves or to others as a result of their addiction, to receive the treatment they needed to begin to recover their lives.


    "The proposed program builds on the current range of voluntary treatment services available in Western Australia," Ms Mitchell said.


    "After compulsory treatment in a designated treatment centre, people will be offered ongoing assistance to stay in the program for another nine months of voluntary residential rehabilitation and support.


    "This will give them the best chance of making long-term changes to improve their health and wellbeing in a safe and supportive environment."


    The Minister said the proposed legislation had inbuilt safeguards to protect individual civil and legal rights, including access to independent advocacy and review.  It also made provision for the services to be culturally appropriate.


    "A range of people, including those who have experienced alcohol or drug problems, their families, health professionals, non-government organisations and advocates, have been consulted in preparing the draft legislation," she said.


    "We are now inviting people to have a say on the Exposure Draft Bill before it is refined and provided to Government for consideration."


    Feedback will be received until January 31, 2017. To make a submission, visit http://www.mhc.wa.gov.au


    Fact File

    • A compulsory treatment order will only be issued if someone has a severe substance use disorder; is a significant risk to themselves or others; needs treatment; is likely to benefit from treatment; and no less restrictive means of treatment is reasonably available
    • Taking into consideration community feedback, the Exposure Draft Bill will be refined before a final Bill is developed and introduced to State Parliament
    • People who are concerned about their own drug use or that of their loved one are urged to seek help early.  Call the Alcohol and Drug Support Line on 9442 5000

    Minister's office - 6552 5400


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