Reorienting the National Drug Strategy to support people and communities

will tregoning

Reporting on the National Ice Taskforce consultations in 2015, Minister Fiona Nash observed that  "from Lismore to Geraldton, police said the same thing: We can’t arrest our way out of this… We need help from the whole community.” Since then arrests for drug offences have continued to climb, and the recommendations of the Ice Taskforce Final Report departed only minimally from the National Drug Strategy which had proved insufficient to address the complex issues associated with the ‘ice epidemic’. Drawing on his experiences with ‘Unharm’, Will Tregoning will explore what the community can do to help leaders struggling with this kind of perpetual drug policy failure, what kinds of policies would actually support the National Drug Strategy's objective to create safe and healthy communities, and how people who themselves use prohibited substances can become more involved as crucial collaborators in achieving these outcomes.

Will Tregoning’s professional experience is in drug and alcohol program evaluation, social policy research, communications and campaigning. He completed a Bachelor of Arts and a PhD in Cultural Studies at the University of Sydney before beginning a career as a research and evaluation consultant to Australian government departments and agencies. Will’s personal and professional experience made him aware of the scale, patterns and demographics of prohibited substance use across Australia, the barriers to good policy, and the need for new approaches. He founded Unharm in 2014 to work with communities of activists to promote policy innovation, wellbeing and practices of care.

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