About the project
The Association for Prevention and Harm Reduction Programs Australia, or Anex, was funded to investigate the legislative and/or regulatory considerations underlying the introduction of needle and syringe programs in prisons in Victoria, and to develop model protocols for their successful operation in these settings.
Outcome of the project
The project found that legislation relating to workplace health and safety, and the provision of reasonable medical treatment and care to prisoners, establish the duty of care underlying the provision of prison-based needle and syringe programs. This duty of care is reinforced by the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 (Vic). To establish needle and syringe programs in prisons (NSPs), compliance with the Corrections Regulations 2009 (Vic) will be required and consent must be obtained from the governor of the prison. Additionally, steps are required to ensure that the program is properly authorised and gazetted according to the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act 1981 (Vic).