The Tasmanian Liberals make no apology for being tough on crime and taking strong action to protect people from the scourge of drugs and violence.
A majority Liberal Government has set a target for Tasmania to have the lowest serious crime rate in the nation, and the lowest use of crystal methamphetamine (Ice) of any State by 2022.
We want to come down like a tonne of bricks on those who pedal this dangerous drug, and support those addicted to kick the habit.
That’s why as part of our health policy we have already announced we will provide funding to the Salvation Army to continue operating 12 drug and alcohol rehabilitation beds at Ulverstone for a further three years after the current agreement expires, taking it to 2022.
Ice is linked to family violence, increases in crime and it places an immense amount of pressure on our emergency service providers.
Tragically Tasmania has not escaped the shocking damage that ice has on individuals, families and communities.
Nationally, addiction to ice has fuelled the spread of bikie gangs and international crime syndicates.
Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs (OMCGs) have been proven to be a significant participant in organised crime in our State and present a risk to the safety of the public.
According to police, they are a major player in the distribution of ice in Tasmania.
Tasmania Police have stated that “OMCGs are involved in violence, drugs, firearms and other crime. They are criminal organisations with business models designed to profit from illegal activities particularly illicit drugs. Tasmanian clubs have links to illegal activity nationally and internationally through strategic partnerships with other organised crime groups.” #
That’s why, a re-elected majority Liberal Government will ban members of certain OMCGs from wearing ‘colours’ in any public place.
‘Colours’ are used to intimidate, influence, recruit, promote and mark out territory, by banning them in public we can curtail gang activity.
However, it’s very important to distinguish between recreational motorcycle groups who gather purely to socialise and ride motorcycles.
They are quite separate groups, one law abiding the other not.
A re-elected majority Liberal Government will legislate to prohibit the display of insignia that promote criminal associations and cause fear in the community.
An amendment to the Police Offences Act will make it an offence for a person, if a member of a prescribed OMCG, to wear, carry or openly display in a public place (or in/on a vehicle in a public place) clothing, jewellery or other items that show the patches, insignia or logo of an ‘identified organisation’.
Police officers will have power in a public place to arrest, to seize items, and the court to order their disposal upon conviction.
I want to be clear: these are not anti-association laws, and legitimate biking groups and organisations will not be affected in any way.
To be declared “outlawed”, a bikie group will need to be officially prescribed as one by the Police Minister, on recommendation from the Police Commissioner and it will be subject to parliamentary oversight and potentially, disallowance by a vote of both Houses.
A re-elected majority Liberal Government will also legislate to stop the display and sale of ice pipes.
Smoking ice is more addictive than most other forms of drug use.
We will introduce an on the spot fine for any retailer or wholesaler found to be selling or displaying ice pipes.
The change of law will remove the mixed message which currently exists where the drug is illegal, but paraphernalia to consume the drug is legally available.
For more information visit: http://bit.ly/WarOnIcePoliceSupport or http://bit.ly/WarOnIceGangCrackdown
# Tasmania Police media release “OMCG rides in Tasmania”, Fact Sheet 18/10/17