Drug users could be hired at Vic centre

By AAP Newswire

Former drug addicts are being encouraged to apply to work at Victoria's first supervised injecting room.

North Richmond Community Health has posted ads for registered nurses and harm reduction practitioners with "lived experience of substance use" to apply for jobs at the centre.

Staff would be responsible for "supervising clients before, during and after episodes of injecting" while engaging with drug users to identify their health needs, the job description reads.

The Victorian government passed laws last year to enable a trial of a safe injecting room to provide a hygienic and medically supervised facility for illicit drug users.

A government spokesman said any person employed as part of the medically supervised injecting room will require a range of qualifications and skills.

"While it's not a prerequisite, people who have experienced addiction, or know of someone who has, are encouraged to apply," the spokesman said.

North Richmond Community Health has procedures to check the backgrounds of all staff and volunteers, he said.

Premier Daniel Andrews changed his tune on the injecting room last year and backed a move for a two-year trial at the centre. It's part of an $87 million drug rehabilitation plan which includes an extra 100 residential rehab beds to combat ice and heroin use.

NRCH says the injecting room, expected to open in June, will save lives.