Ms JO HAYLEN (Summer Hill)—I recently had the honour of meeting Marrickville Youth Resource Centre staff working to roll out the Planet Youth Program across my electorate with the support of the Alcohol and Drug Foundation.
For over 60 years, the Alcohol and Drug Foundation has led the way in championing evidence based drug and alcohol intervention measures and research.
The Planet Youth Program represents a new chapter in their important work, and involves workers touring local schools, conducting qualitative surveys of students about drug use, and tailoring programs to help deliver drug and alcohol prevention strategies.
The program is being trialled in my electorate and is collecting critical data, assessing community infrastructure, and engaging the local community to reduce the risk factors of drug and alcohol use in young people, a key plank in harm minimisation.
In Iceland, where the program began, alcohol, tobacco and drug use fell significantly between 1998 and 2008, as well as reductions in bullying and juvenile crime.
I welcome this trial and recognise the important long term investment in our youth that this program represents, and congratulate the Marrickville Youth Resource Centre and Alcohol and Drug Foundation on this important project.