Ice-corridor through Gympie is destroying children's lives

EMERGING "ice corridors” across south-east and Central Queensland, which Gympie is smack bang in the middle of, meant 749 children - or one in every three - in need of protection last year had a parent using the drug.

Child Safety Minister Shannon Fentiman revealed this alarming statistic yesterday ahead of the inaugural ice summit in Rockhampton.

She said Queensland parents known to the child protection system used ice more frequently than they drank alcohol (according to the first year-long study into the drug habits of families known to the Department of Child Safety).

Sixty per cent of children who had a parent using ice, were younger than five.

Where the parents used ice, 78% were more likely to have a criminal history, 73% were more likely to have a diagnosed mental illness, 68% were more likely to have experienced domestic violence and 19% were more likely to be homeless.

Ice is destroying families and having a deep impact right here in the Gympie region.

Perhaps the only positive sign to come out of the report was that concerned family members, friends and neighbours are alerting authorities when they think a child is at risk.

The Opposition says Ice may be a reason so many children now need protection, but asks why so many foster carers are leaving the system and why so many serious cases are not being sorted out quickly enough.

If you have a reason to suspect, please call 1300 703 921 during business hours or 1800 177 135 or (07) 3235 9999 after hours and on weekends.

If a child's life is in danger call 000.

Gympie Times


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