A report by the NSW Auditor General reveals that Byron Shire and Lismore LGAs took the second and third spots for highest number of cannabis possession offences in the State.
TWO local government areas (LGAs) on the Northern Rivers take some of the top spots for the most cannabis offences in the State, a crime which costs the NSW economy $700 million a year, a new report states.
The NSW Auditor-General yesterday released his findings on the effectiveness of police issuing cautions to people in possession of minor amounts of cannabis (less than 15 grams).
Eight per cent of the NSW population are cannabis users, the report found, a large proportion of which are on the Northern Rivers.
The Byron Shire and Lismore LGAs took the second and third spots for the highest number of cannabis possession offences in the State, exceeded only by Sydney.
While cannabis cautioning has saved at least $20 million in court costs over the past 10 years, very few adults and even fewer youths sought help for their drug use, Auditor-General Peter Achterstraat said.
“Police do not have the authority to compel young offenders to seek help for their cannabis use.
The police can only issue a caution and refer them to a local drug treatment services,” he said in a statement.
Fewer than two-in-five adults cautioned for a second time used a drug helpline, despite it being mandatory.
Mr Achterstraat recommended the NSW Police and NSW Health work towards increasing the number of adult offenders contacting the NSW drug helpline.
Twenty-five per cent of patients who seek help from the Northern NSW Local Area Health Network drug and alcohol service do so for cannabis use, the service’s director John Leary said.
“It’s a good recommendation that they should attempt to increase the number of people seeking treatment,” he said.
“We could provide more information and education to the police to both inform and to get out to thepeople they see that our local service is available.”
HEMP Embassy president Michael Balderstone said the $700 million figure placed on taxpayers would be a lot higher if cautioning was abolished.
Source: Northern Star
Byron Bay Recent News Articles
- Nimbin Mardi Grass 20th Anniversary May 4 & 5
- Byron Schoolies HUB has funding removed by Byron Council
- Useful Information When Travelling to the South Pacific
- Youth Week Youth Forum - Thursday night at the YAC - "Things are getting dire * have your say about the Shire"
- BOOMERANG Festival for Byron in October 2013
- Fusing Work and Play on Your Business Travel
- The Bay Rollers 'Skate Of Origin' in Byron Tonight
- Harmony Day in Byron Bay Today
- Byron Bay International Film Festival Opens this Friday
- Movie Under The Plastic Stars - at the YAC today
- The Politics Of Pleasure - a new book by former Byron man Mark Russell
- V Day in Byron Bay - One Billion Rising - Feb 14
- Flickerfest continues today and tomorrow - program
- Public Forum in Byron Tonight - get along and have your say
- Byron Arts Classic Opening Tonight at Community Centre
- Which Way Festival this Sat at Byron YAC - 20 Bands in 12 hours!
- Two Fireworks Displays for New Year's Eve in Byron Bay
- Fun Outdoor Activities to Do in Byron Bay
- Paul Simon and Rufus Wainwright to play 2013 BluesFest
- Cringe The Binge Kicks Off With Hardcore Party at YACROCKCAFE Tonight
- AMA URGES YOUNG PEOPLE TO PLAY IT SAFE AT SCHOOLIES
- Cringe The Binge For The National Weekend Of Action & Help Youth
- Third Artist Announcement Bluesfest 2013- It’s A Bluesfest Dream Come True
- Byron Filmmaker David Bradbury Arrested Investigating Indian Nuclear Sector
- Cringe The Binge National Weekend of Action - Byron Youth Service Initiative
- Reclaim The Night Events For Young Women In Byron Bay
- Sunday is Byron Breast Cancer Awareness Day
- Rock The Gate Against CSG Today In Murwillumbah
- Bunjala Day at Kulchajam in Byron Today
- Sample Food Festival Today In Bangalow