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AIDS white paper on the right track



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P A R L I A M E N T O F A U S T R A L I A

H O U S E O F R E P R E S E N T A T I V E S

PETER SHACK, M.P.

FEDERAL MEMBER FOR TANGNEY SHADOW MINISIEH FQH HEALTH

P.O. B O X 1 2 0 6 , B O O R A O O O N , W .A . 8 1 6 4

SUITE 8, GATEWAY MELVILLE CITY CENTRE BOORAGOON TEL. (09) 364 5554, (062) 77 4169

FAX: (09) 364 9971

MEDIA RELEASE.

29th AUGUST, 1989. 48/89.

AIDS WHITE PAPER ON THE RIGHT TRACK

Shadow Minister for Health, Peter Shack, today offered bipartisan support for the a i d s initiatives outlined in the Government's AIDS White Paper which endorses the policy objectives already laid down by the Liberal and National Parties.

"The directions which the Government intends to pursue are in line with our policy position on AIDS and represent a sensible balance between protecting public health interests and treating those already affected by HIV and AIDS with care and compassion.

"The White Paper is a blueprint for dealing with this infection on the basis of what is currently known about its cause, its methods of transmission and its means of treatment.

"However, in view of widespread evidence that IV drug users pose the greatest threat of the infection being transmitted to the wider community it is imperative that the Government pays close attention to the need for extensive research into the development

of a foolproof single shot, non-reusable syringe.

"Until such time as suitable a device is found, however, we are in accord with the Government's view that IV drug users should have ready access to needle exchange and drug rehabilitation programs.

"The overriding goal of any policy on AIDS must be that which we spelt out in our policy, and that is to eliminate the transmission of HIV infection to ensure that no more Australians, than is the case now, will be affected by the disease.

"The recommendations contained in the White Paper support this objective and place the focus fairly and squarely on a combination of preventive education and research.

"The document has reached the same conclusion which we arrived at about the preventable nature of the disease and the need for each and every one of us to avoid behaviours which place ourselves and others at risk.

"It is now up to the Federal Government to implement its AIDS program and to win the support of the State and Territory Governments for a uniform, national approach in the fight against this epidemic.

"In doing so it will have the support of the Federal Coalition Parties and I-trust the support of other levels of government.

"Our support will not, however, be uncritical.

"We will closely monitor the progress of the implementation of the Government's strategy and sound loud and clear warnings if p ro g re s s i s to o slo w o r i f we b e lie v e t h a t i t

r a i l s . " COMMONWEALTH

PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY

C o n ta c t! P e te r Shack ( 0 6 2 ) 77 41 69. M iCAH