NSW Drug Trends 2016: Findings from the Illicit...
Australia's ice plan 'failing': expert
More needs to be done to fight Australia's ice addiction
A record haul of almost one tonne of ice is an indication Australia's drug policies are a "mammoth failure", a drug addiction expert says.
Some nine million hits of crystal methamphetamine were prevented from hitting the streets after police discovered the massive haul hidden in floorboards in a Melbourne warehouse.
However as police revealed details of the $900 million drug bust on Wednesday, they warned the seizure was an indication of the huge demand for illicit drugs in Australia.
Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation president Alex Wodak says ice addiction needs to be treated as a social problem otherwise demand will only increase.
"The threshold is whether we regard the drugs issue primarily as a law enforcement issue or primarily as a health and social issue," Dr Wodak told AAP.
"We're seeing increasing production, consumption and availability.
"It's a failure of a mammoth scale."
"A survey by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre from 2009 to 2014 found the proportion of drug users who found it "easy" or "very easy" to obtain ice jumped from 65 per cent to 91 per cent. Among drug users ice use rose from 37 per cent to 61 per cent over the same time."
Up to 1.7 tonnes of methamphetamine have been seized in Victoria alone this year.
Last month, 300kg of ice was found by police inside metal gates in Melbourne.
The federal government has invested $300 million into ice education and rehabilitation but Dr Wodak, a former director of the Alcohol and Drug Service at Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital, argues a more progressive policy is needed.
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