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Commission supports ‘Drug use can happen in any family’ campaign

24 Feb 2016

Friends, families and clients of alcohol and other drug services in Queensland have been encouraged to continue to share their ideas on how to prevent and reduce harm.

Coinciding with the inaugural National Family Drug Support Day (24 February), the Queensland Mental Health Commissioner told a function at Queensland’s Parliament House today that while alcohol and other drugs affected the whole community, the impact on families deserved special consideration.

"Input from friends, families and clients of alcohol and other drug services made a powerful contribution to shaping the new Queensland Alcohol and Other Drugs Action Plan 2015-17," Queensland Mental Health Commissioner Dr Lesley van Schoubroeck said.

The Queensland Government has committed to all 54 actions contained in the plan including more and specialised treatment services, education programs and efforts to reduce stigma and discrimination.

Dr van Schoubroeck said consultation by the Queensland Network of Alcohol and Other Drug Agencies (QNADA) and the Queensland Mental Health Commission had identified a number of priorities among families:

  • Stigma and discrimination is a barrier to accessing services and to recovering and reconnecting with the community.
  • More education and support is needed for friends, families and clients of alcohol and other drug services.
  • Access to detoxification and residential rehabilitation services needs to improve.
  • Better information is needed on available services and what clients can expect from those services.
  • Better integration and collaboration is needed between health and other services, including child protection, education, training and employment services.

Founder and CEO of Family Drug Support Tony Trimingham said: "Any family anywhere in Australia, regardless of background, economic and other circumstances can be affected by drugs.

"Drug users and their families are often misrepresented, stereotyped and discriminated against.

"Families struggle with the negative effects of drug use. This is a barrier to them seeking help and support."

For information on the 54 actions outlined in the Queensland Alcohol and Other Drugs Action Plan 2015-17, visit