Schools and health continue to be the core of NSW Labor’s election campaign with the party pledging to help battle the scourge of the drug ice and to make state schools solar friendly.
NSW Opposition leader Michael Daley on Sunday announced $100 million for six ice detoxification and rehabilitation clinics across the state if Labor is elected on Saturday.
Four clinics will be set up in regional NSW with two in Sydney and they will have the capacity to treat up to 1300 patients affected by the drug every year.
Police will be able to refer patients to the clinics for assessment and judges will be able to request admission of patients.
‘Ice is a real scourge,’ Mr Daley told reporters in Sydney.
‘Enforcement is a big part of treating the scourge of all drugs in NSW but so is harm minimisation and support.’
With just under a week before the NSW election, the Labor leader also re-iterated his support for a drug summit to tackle illicit drug use by young people.
Pill testing has been a hot topic ahead of the election following the drug-related deaths of five people at festivals in the state between September 2018 and January 2019, prompting a public outcry for pill testing trials.
While Mr Daley hasn’t backed pill testing, he says he will support the measure if experts agree it will help with harm minimisation.
The NSW government remains firmly opposed.
NSW Labor also pledged to install solar panels across state schools after hearing the calls of thousands of students who rallied for climate change action on Friday.
If Labor wins the election, the $100 million package will see solar panels installed on more than 350 schools as part of the party’s commitment to tackle climate change.
‘As we saw at rallies across the country on Friday, the next generation is demanding real action on climate change,’ Mr Daley said in a statement on Sunday.
The opposition also promised, if elected, to establish walk-in health centres across the state to take the pressure off over-stretched hospital emergency departments.
The opposition pledged $25 million for six centres which will be led by nurses and will provide advice and treatment for people aged two years and older with minor injuries and illnesses.
The services will be free for patients with a Medicare card.