Art exhibition by Kings Cross injecting centre clients
Clients of the Sydney Medically Supervised Injecting Centre in Kings Cross are participants in an art exhibition taking place at the Kings Cross Neighbourhood Centre. One of the aims of the exhibition is to challenge common stereotypes about those in the community who inject drugs.
You can see some of the entries here: http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/newslocal/city-east/clients-from-kings-cross-medically-supervised-injecting-centre-create-works-for-new-art-exhibition/story-fngr8h22-1227114786416
About the Kings Cross injecting centre
The Sydney Medically Supervised Injecting Centre is one of a kind in Australia and has been in operation since 2001. Beginning under a trial period, the clinic allows registered injecting drug users to inject drugs in a medically supervised environment without breaking the law. It is regarded as a success. After an August 2010 monitoring report from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research found that robbery, property crime and drug possession (excluding cocaine) rates had dropped since 2001, legislation was enacted which gave the clinic permanent operation. You can see the BOCSAR report here: http://www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au/Documents/bb51.pdf
Drug users and criminal law in NSW
- Possession of syringes and needles was decriminalised by the NSW Government in 1987, reflected by the addition of section 11(1A) to the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985.
- It is still illegal to possess other drug paraphernalia, for example ice pipes or bongs.
- Self-administration of illicit drugs is also illegal under section 12 of the Act, which underscores the importance of safe and legal environments for drug addicts to self-administer, thereby avoiding risky behaviours.
- The above offences are all punishable by a maximum of 20 penalty units ($2,200) and/or 2 years’ jail.
Picture courtesy Daily Telegraph News Local
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