THE Victorian AIDS Council has welcomed a State Government announcement of $5.1 million to go towards new harm reduction programs for ice addiction.

As one of the organisations included in these new measures, VAC will receive $160,000 over the next two years to go toward continued innovation in peer education aimed at men who have sex with men (MSM) about use of methamphetamines and its impact on HIV risk reduction strategies.

“In our joint election platform with Living Positive Victoria, we raised concerns regarding the impact drug use has on HIV prevention. We applaud the Government’s timely response,” said VAC CEO Simon Ruth. VAC recently introduced Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) services throughout the greater Melbourne area last month.

The funding was recently announced by state Mental Health Minister Mary Wooldridge at the Penington Institute’s 2014 Australian Drugs Conference.

As outlined in the government’s package measures, the funding will go toward harm minimalisation through a targeted peer education initiative aimed at MSM about the sexual health risks associated with ice use.

For more information, visit www.vac.org.au/AODServices.

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