Labor must today release the findings of Ken Lay’s report into a second injecting room in Melbourne’s CBD as uncertainty spreads to businesses in Bourke Street.
Reports that a second supervised injecting room could be located at a Salvation Army building in the iconic Melbourne street have taken businesses by complete surprise.
Labor received the Lay Report six weeks weeks ago, yet businesses and residents in the CBD remain in the dark as speculation mounts.
“It is a ridiculous level of secrecy by the Andrews Labor Government to continue to hide Key Lay’s report from the public,” Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Emma Kealy, said.
“Bourke Street business owners and hospitality operators have been shocked by Labor’s new plans for an injecting room on their doorstep, again without consultation or an opportunity for locals to have their say.’’
“CBD business owners and residents are being punished for Labor’s incompetence to provide the drug rehabilitation services that Victorians need.”
“The North Richmond injecting room continues to be plagued by significant safety issues, including thousands more needles on nearby streets and even drug users saying they don’t feel safe using the injecting room due to the honey pot effect of drug dealing and violence – all next door to the primary school.”
The Minister for Mental Health, Gabrielle Williams, last week again refused to go into any detail on the findings, only to say the report would be released in “due course”.
Businesses and residents near Degraves Street are already anxious, now those in Bourke Street are in the firing line amid the mounting secrecy.
Enough is enough. Labor has run out of time and excuses. The entire Lay Report must be released now to end the uncertainty.