National Drug Strategy
National Drug Strategy

The National Drug Strategy 2010-2015: consultation draft

Governance

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Council of Australian Governments agreement
Continued partnership between health and police portfolios
The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs
Australian National Council on Drugs

Council of Australian Governments agreement

The National Drug Strategy is supported by high-level agreement by COAG that drug misuse issues are a priority for all Australian jurisdictions.

The Ministerial Council on Drug Strategy was established at a Special Premiers' Conference on 2 April 1985. It was agreed that the Ministerial Council on Drug Strategy would coordinate and direct the (then) National Campaign Against Drug Abuse 1985-92 and have authority to deal with all drug-related matters.

It was also agreed that the National Drug Strategy would make a balanced attack on demand and supply and on minimising the harms drugs cause.

Continued partnership between health and police portfolios

Consistent with COAG's agreement, the establishment in 1985 of the Ministerial Council on Drug Strategy as the auspicing group for the National Drug Strategy set up a unique and new partnership between law enforcement, health and education which has enabled great strides to be taken in supply, demand and harm reduction through integrated approaches.

This partnership approach will be maintained under the National Drug Strategy 2010-2015 to continue and consolidate past efforts and ensure that a comprehensive and holistic three-pillar approach continues to be applied to emerging drug trends and issues.

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The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs

The National Drug Strategy 2010-2015 will continue to be supported by the Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs which is a Commonwealth, State, and Territory government forum of senior officers that represent health and law enforcement agencies in each Australian jurisdiction and in New Zealand, as well as representatives of the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations and the Ministerial Council on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs.

The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs provides policy advice to relevant Ministers on drug-related matters, and is responsible for implementing policies and programs under the National Drug Strategy framework.

The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs will seek to better engage sectors beyond health, law enforcement and education to ensure whole of government and integrated cross-sectoral approaches to more complex drug misuse issues. Representatives of relevant agencies, intergovernmental councils and/or non-government organisations will be invited to the Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs for discussion of particular issues. For example, representatives of liquor licensing authorities will be invited for discussion of alcohol-related issues. A different range of stakeholders may be invited for discussion of drug and alcohol treatment service issues. Different sets of stakeholders may be invited for discussion of precursor chemical control or for pharmaceutical misuse. The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs will structure its agenda and establish working groups as appropriate to facilitate this approach.

The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs will also seek cross-representation and other forms of engagement, including joint working groups as appropriate, with other Commonwealth-State officials meetings where issues relevant to the causes and impacts of drug misuse are being addressed. For example, the Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs will conduct joint work with the Australian Health Ministers Advisory Council on the Pharmaceutical Drugs Misuse Strategy. The Committee will also seek to engage with groups addressing homelessness and other issues relevant to social inclusion and addressing social disadvantage.

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Australian National Council on Drugs

Membership of the Australian National Council on Drugs is appointed by the Prime Minister and includes people with a wide range of experience and expertise on various aspects of drug policy, such as treatment, rehabilitation, education, family counselling, law enforcement, research and work at the coalface in community organisations.

The Australian National Council on Drugs will provide ministers with independent, expert advice on matters connected with legal and illegal drugs. It provides a non-government voice, to facilitate an enhanced partnership between the government and community sectors in the development and implementation of policies and programs to redress drug-related harms. The Australian National Council on Drugs will develop a workplan and will report annually to the Prime Minister and will provide reports to the Ministerial Council on Drug Strategy.

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