11 November 2020

The Moderator of the Uniting Church (NSW/ACT), Rev. Simon Hansford has welcomed the announcement yesterday by the NSW government that it will commit $7.5 million to fund a new drug treatment centre for the Dubbo region.

“This funding will make a significant difference for the region, it will mean that people who need drug treatment will be able to receive it rather than having to travel to Sydney or to miss out on treatment all together,” Rev. Hansford said.

“We have always said this is a health and social issue and not a criminal one and our faith in Christ reminds us of the inherent value of all people.

“We all want to live in a world where everyone is treated with dignity and respect, including people who use drugs. There are far too many people in Australia, especially in rural and regional Australia, who want drug treatment but are denied it because of a lack of government funding, this decision in relation to a new Dubbo treatment centre is to be applauded.”

Rev. Hansford said the church has long campaigned for better services as part of the Fair Treatment campaign (see: which now includes more than 60 partner organisations. He particularly praised the advocacy work of churches in the Dubbo region as well as the help of the Epping Church which is in the electorate of NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet.

The Fair Treatment campaign was launched in 2018 with the Half a Million Steps Walk from Dubbo to Sydney which highlighted the journey someone who was seeking drug treatment was often forced to make due to a lack of drug services in rural areas such as Dubbo.


For more information, please contact:   

Martin Thomas,, 0477 340 704

Ashley Donnelly,, 0400 509 068


About the Uniting Church Synod of NSW and ACT 

The Uniting Church is one of the largest Christian denominations in Australia. Our Congregations and members are diverse in age, location and culture. The Synod of NSW and the ACT supports more than 500 Congregations, 50,000 members, 14 Presbyteries and 9 schools and Parish Missions. We are connected by a single story, worshipping every week in more than 40 languages.


About Uniting | 

Uniting is responsible for the social justice, community services and chaplaincy work of the Uniting Church in NSW and the ACT, providing care and support for people through all ages and stages of life and with a focus on people experiencing disadvantage and vulnerability. Our purpose is to inspire people, enliven communities and confront injustice. We celebrate diversity and welcome everyone exactly as they are.