Topics: Decriminalising drugs, early election
Alright our next guest is the Federal Environment Minister. Greg Hunt, good afternoon.
And good afternoon Tom.
Now, earlier on in the program I spoke with Greens Leader Senator Richard Di Natale.
He wants to decriminalise drugs including ice. He wants to build rehabilitation facilities where people get sent, where drug users get sent instead of into jail.
What do you think?
Look, I think this is a terrible and frightening idea. The reason why is because ice is an absolute disaster.
The latest advice that we have from the Ice Taskforce Report is about 200,000 people in Australia use it. It's a drug that creates psychotic rage that leads to violence.
You have emergency service workers who can be deeply and catastrophically affected by violence that flows from drug users.
And the whole point here is this, unintentionally – I'll give it that degree of respect – says it's okay, it's no longer a crime.
And you have to deal with supply, but you've also got to deal with demand.
And by saying it's okay, which is effectively what we're – what would be happening here, that would lead to an increase, it would lead to further problems and would be a disaster.
So, this proposal will not be supported by the Federal Government.
Clearly, categorically rejected and I can guarantee that that will be the view of every member of the Cabinet. We've seen the Ice Taskforce Report.
This is one of the biggest community issues. I've just been down on Phillip Island today in my electorate doing community meetings.
A youth worker was talking to me about some of the problems associated with this particular drug – the risk to others, the way it smashes up families – and it's legitimising and saying ‘it's okay’.
And it's not, it never is and it's something which is just having a catastrophic affect on communities.
Very quickly, are you getting ready for an early election up in Canberra?
No, the primary plan, the intention is to run the full period.
We have not ruled out the possibility of a double dissolution which would be in almost the ordinary timeframe in any event but the primary plan as the Prime Minister said on many occasions is to have an ordinary election in the ordinary course of time.
The alternative would be something which you wouldn't even call early, would be a double dissolution to deal with union thuggery and corruption, maybe a couple of months before the formal due date. But plan A is the ordinary course of election.
Thank you Mr Hunt.