Liberals ask why smoking is being banned at the prison while a needle exchange is installed

Andrew Wall

Andrew Wall

ANDREW Wall says the Barr government should be condemned for its contradictory priorities at Canberra’s jail.

“The government is planning to ban smoking yet still wants to push ahead with a needle and syringe program (NSP) at the Alexander Maconochie Centre (AMC),” Andrew said.

“The contradiction is ridiculous.

“Shane Rattenbury clearly has his priorities wrong when it comes to the ACT’s jail. On one hand the government is saying, ‘let’s give prisoners needles to inject an illegal drug’, yet on the other they’re saying, ‘put a ban on smoking cigarettes’. It simply doesn’t make sense.

“A plan to ban smoking at the AMC is a sound policy but the existing issues with drug use and security breaches need to be addressed as a matter of urgency.

“Shane Rattenbury and his Barr government colleagues need to first address the significant security failings within the AMC before embarking on implementing a smoking ban and risking a riot similar to that seen in Victoria.

“The government needs to prioritise reforms in Canberra’s corrections system,” Mr Wall concluded.

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