Labor’s plans for a second injecting room on Melbourne’s iconic Degraves Street cafe strip has been categorically rejected by local traders, residents and now Melbourne’s Lord Mayor.
The Andrews Labor Government secretly spent more than $40 million buying the old Yooralla building on Flinders Street at the same time as it pursued plans to open a second injecting room in Melbourne.
Today, Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp told Melbourne radio: “We [Council] do not believe that the current site is the best site for a safe injecting room”.
Shadow Minister for Mental Health Emma Kealy said a second injecting room was the wrong plan when too many problems still plague the first one in Richmond.
"Our kids should never be exposed to the horrors of illegal drug use, stumble across deceased bodies, or have to dodge dirty needles on their walk to primary school, but that's exactly the dangers at the Labor Government's first injecting room,” Ms Kealy said.
“Labor promised that the Richmond injecting room would stop public drug use and clear the streets of used needles, but instead we see escalating crime, drug dealing and erratic behaviour at the centre which is right next to the local primary school.
“An injecting room on the iconic Degraves Street has always been a wrong location and a bad idea.
"After nearly three years of Labor’s financially-crippling lockdowns and restrictions, the last thing DeGraves Street traders need is the dangerous problems of Labor’s injecting room tossed at their doorstep.
"Melbourne's CBD desperately needs a plan to recover and rebuild, but instead Labor's moving to secretly set up a second injecting room among the iconic eateries on Degraves Street.
“It’s now imperative that the Minster for Health steps up and categorically rules out this plan for a second injecting room on Degraves Street.”
Emma Kealy MP
Shadow Minister for Mental Health