Close to the Great Barrier Reef and Queensland's vast interior, Rockhampton is a central, oft visited town which hides a darker side. Drug and alcohol use is high amongst certain demographics with police working to prevent all related crimes. Regional rehab facilities are also lacking for those battling addiction, meaning individuals have to travel further afield to seek assistance.
Drug Consumption in Rockhampton
Like most of Australia, the town of Rockhampton is under the grip of an ice epidemic. According to the ABC News, emergency workers and community leaders met up with the national ice taskforce in May to discuss possible anti-addiction strategies. Demand, education and rehab were among the topics examined. Focus was also put on domestic violence which has been linked to the rising ice consumption region-wide.
Until then, ice continues to wreak havoc. One mother was even driven to build a $3,000 cage for her addicted son to protect him from the drug, writes The Morning Bulletin. A lack of available rehab centres made her feel there was no other choice. The son started with alcohol then moved to cannabis and methamphetamines after struggling to deal with traumatic family losses.
The police are doing their part to combat drug use in Rockhampton. For instance, ABC News writes they used horses to scout out fields where drugs were or had been growing in a recent drug bust. Drugs were also found in a nearby residence police searched during the operation. In Road Safety Week, police also watched out for drug drivers, writes The Morning Bulletin. The Monday saw five individuals caught high on methylamphetamine, cannabis or both. The week prior, 11 people tested positive for drug driving.
Alcohol and the Rockhampton Area
There is also a problem with heavy drinking in Rockhampton. In fact, a local magistrate has called for publicans to be blamed. The Morning Bulletin says that after a Yeppoon plumber went on a drunken rampage in the CBD, the magistrate called out bartenders and pub owners who provided drinks to those already intoxicated. In this case, the plumber was evicted from a local pub and had an altercation with a male bystander afterwards.
Rockhampton has seen a number of incidents caused by excessive drinking. The Morning Bulletin reported two of them. The first involved a man sent to jail for his appalling traffic record. The man had several charges stretching back to the 1980s. In this case, he drove without a licence after drinking half a bottle of rum. In the second instance, a man stinking of alcohol exposed himself to a crowd of families at a children's carnival. He also had a string of prior offences after struggling with alcohol, speed and cannabis.
Rehab Options for Rockhampton Residents
Despite these unfortunate incidents, Rockhampton lacks adequate treatment for those addicted. The only government-funded institute is the Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Service on Quarry Street. This is a 23-bed inpatient service that offers adult and youth programs covering clinical assessment, case management, interventions and more.
The need for other facilities has been mentioned before. The Morning Bulletin writes of a magistrate who called for a new detox centre in Rockhampton. Despite good work going on with alcohol treatment, individuals had to visit Bundaberg or Mackay for proper rehab. A new facility would also help the courts, the magistrate said. ABC News also mentions an Indigenous youth worker who called for a rehab centre targeting youth. The lack of a proper centre was endangering the younger generation by relying on laws and legislation which weren't effective.
Alternatives for Rockhampton Addicts
This situation means that locals have to seek help in other locations. However, with public clinics full and private centres often expensive, a better alternative is to look for support in a country such as Thailand. Serenity is a rehab clinic in Chiang Rai which offers tailored programs at a fraction of the cost of Australian centres. This is because the cost of living in Thailand is very low, allowing us to deliver excellent service without charging a fortune.
Looking for assistance in a Thai rehab clinic is also a great way to maintain your confidentiality. Instead of worrying about whether friends, family or colleagues will find out about your struggle with addiction, fly to Thailand and get on the road to recovery in a completely private setting. From Rockhampton, flights are about 16 hours with transfers through Bangkok. We will also pick you up at the airport and whisk you away to our first class rehab centre.