WA Labor Government in denial about failure of ‘tough meth’ border

The Cook Labor Government remains in denial about the scale of Western Australia’s resurgent methamphetamine problem in the face of independent data from the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission’s National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program Report*.

It indicates a 40 per cent annual increase in methylamphetamine consumption in Western Australia (the largest increase in the nation) during the wastewater testing period in between August and October last year.

“This enormous jump in methylamphetamine consumption in Western Australia, back to pre-Covid levels, clearly indicates that drug supply has not been interrupted – despite the Government’s rhetoric,” Shadow Minister for Justice Tjorn Sibma said.

“The responses of the Premier and Police Minister yesterday prove that they are in denial about the scale of the current problem and the direction of the trend. This is an abrogation of responsibility.”

Answers to parliamentary questions indicate that their much-trumpeted Methamphetamine Action Plan and laws which have given Police the power to conduct ‘regular’ drug searches at 22 entry points into our state have failed to make any dent in consumption at all.

“The Opposition helped the Government last year to pass laws allowing WA Police to search for prohibited drugs and chemical precursors within Border Search Areas (BSAs),” Mr Sibma said.

“The Government boasted that the BSAs were ‘… arguably most important tool the McGowan Government has given the Western Australian Police Force to fight the organised crime syndicates trying to pump meth and misery into our community’.”

“Yesterday the Government had to admit that only 5 grams of cannabis had been found after seventy BSA searches.”

The BSA searches occurred over eight months from 27 June 2023 to 27 February 2024.

The Wastewater Monitoring Program occurred in August and October last year when the Government’s laws were operational.

“The Cook Labor Government needs to admit that its ‘hard meth border’ has failed. It has not lived up to the hype. This is another example of an arrogant Government failing to keep the community safe,” Mr Sibma said.