As part of its ongoing efforts to engage the community and encourage people to come forward with information about ice dealers and makers, Crime Stoppers SA has unveiled a range of flyers in Chinese, Vietnamese and Arabic.
Crime Stoppers South Australia Chair, Ms Sharon Hanlon, said that the latest census data shows that about 350,000 South Australians are born overseas, and about 220,000 speak a language other than English at home.
“One of the greatest strengths about South Australia is the cultural diversity across our community, and it is important to do all we can to engage South Australians who come from non-English speaking backgrounds because they make up nearly 13 percent of South Australia’s population. When their children are added, this figure rises to nearly 25 percent,” Ms Hanlon said.
“We understand that some of these people come from countries that are war-torn or have a distrust of police and authority, so it is important to tell them that Crime Stoppers is an independent program that acts as a trusted link between the community and police if they have information about criminals and illegal activities,” she said.
“Data shows that ice doesn’t discriminate when it comes to gender, age, place of residence, ethnic background or socio-economic status. A recent National Drug Strategy Household Survey found that 2.3 per cent of the national workforce have used methamphetamine at least once in the last 12 months, which equates to about 230,000 Australians, as well as about 5.6 per cent of unemployed people, which equates to about 50,000 people.”
Ms Hanlon said often people have a suspicion or know information about a local drug dealer, but don’t know where to turn for fear of reprisals.
“Someone might have a family member that is an ice addict and they know who the dealer is. Perhaps it is a person that is on the edge of a network of broader friends. Maybe there are odd coming and goings at a neighbour’s house. Whatever the circumstances, ice dealers are often selling in full view of their local community and they should be held to account for the crisis they continue to cause,” Ms Hanlon said.
“Knowing or suspecting something and then doing nothing is unacceptable – especially when people continue to die and families are torn apart because of this insidious drug – all while the dealer keeps making money from the misery caused,” she said.
“The number of deaths related to the use of Ice doubled between 2009 and 2015 and that number continues to grow at an alarming rate. While most deaths are the result of overdose, the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre reviewed coronial records of 1,649 meth-related deaths and found overdose was the most common cause of death at 43%, followed by heart disease at 22% and suicide at 18%. Even more sobering is that 156 Ice users died at the wheel of a car or on a motorbike – creating a real risk of harm to innocent road users,” Ms Hanlon said.
The Make the Call. Cut the Supply. Stop the Hurt campaign – launched in partnership with the State Government and SA Police – encourages people to provide anonymous information about street-level and online dealers and manufacturers. The 6-month campaign engages metropolitan and regional communities through radio and TV advertising, online engagement, posters and regional roadshows.
The linguistically diverse materials will be distributed through relevant community centres and other locations. To have materials sent, please enquire at [email protected]
If you have any information about criminals or criminal activity, then call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or report online at www.crimestopperssa.com.au
People can remain anonymous and rewards are available.