The Case for Online Betting Limits

This article covers a recent study into online betting limits and is well worth a read. 

This bit jumped out at me:


Participants rated positive messages on controlling gambling money as the most helpful and simple to understand. The study determined that deposit restrictions were the most popular among the types of limits available. Overall spending limits, single-wager limits, and loss limits followed.

The least favorite type was a timer. Only 22% indicated that they would use a clock to limit the amount of time spent gambling online.

Prevalence of Alcohol Ads in Australia: 2020 Report

An alcohol ad every 35 seconds: A snapshot of how the alcohol industry is using a global pandemic as a marketing opportunity reveals that in just one hour on a Friday night, 107 sponsored alcohol advertisements were displayed on a person’s Facebook and Instagram accounts, which equates to approximately one alcohol advertisement every 35 seconds.
Below are links to a snapshot of the report and a jointly badged media release with FARE, Cancer Council WA and Sober in the Country’s, Shanna Whan:

Jobs: Exec Officer



Position Vacant

Australasian Therapeutic Communities Association

Executive Officer



The Australasian Therapeutic Communities Association (ATCA) is the peak association representing alcohol and other drugs service in Australia and New Zealand that operate under both the Therapeutic Community and the Residential Rehabilitation Services models of care. 


ATCA leads on driving quality in organisations operating as Therapeutic Communities (TCs) and Residential Rehabilitation Services (RRS), as well as being the focal point for advocacy for TCs and RRS.


ATCA seeks to recruit an Executive Officer (EO).  The position is available for 20 – 27 hours per week on a fixed-term contract basis, initially being offered for a two year period until June 2022, with extension likely subject to funding.


Working with and supporting the ATCA Board, the role of the EO involves:

  • providing leadership to ATCA’s membership,
  • the management, liaison and lobbying of key stakeholders,
  • ensuring the profile and image of TCs, RRS and ATCA is maintained and increased, and
  • the operational management of ATCA.


As an experienced executive, you must have highly developed strategic / collaborative leadership skills, analytical, problem solving, management and planning skills.


A commitment to ATCA’s values and priorities in representing and advancing the interests of the ATCA membership.  Ability to work effectively with a Board, within a membership-based organisation. An advanced understanding of the financial, social, economic and political environment that TCs and RRS operate within.


The location of the position is negotiable and remuneration (pro rata for 20 – 27 hours per week – part time position) will be negotiated with the successful candidate.  ATCA offers salary packaging.


For a copy of the Position Description and Selection Criteria, please email:

Mr Garth Popple, Chair ATCA Board at:


Completed applications addressing the Selection Criteria and a Curriculum Vitae are to be emailed to:

Mr Garth Popple, Chair ATCA Board at


International Family Drug Support Day

Family Drug Support will be hosting International Family Drug Support Day in Canberra on 24th February 2020 from 12pm to 2pm. Now in its 5th year this event is attracting more interest worldwide, as we focus on the need to support families impacted by drugs and alcohol.

Speakers will include the Minister for Health Hon. Greg Hunt MP, the Shadow Minister for Education and Training Hon. Tanya Plibersek MP, the former leader of the Greens Senator Dr Richard Di Natale, Federal MP for Mayo Ms Rebekha Sharkie MP, Senator Jacqui Lambie (Tasmania), as well as family members.

The event will be held in the Dame Dorothy Tangney Alcove, Parliament House, Capital Hill ACT 2600. Please go to


Methamphetamine leads drug rehab admissions

Methamphetamine leads drug rehab admissions for seventh year running
Alcohol remains a significant problem

2018 Odyssey House NSW Annual Report

The devastating human impact of ‘ice’ shows no signs of slowing, with methamphetamine the leading drug problem for the seventh year running  according to a report by Odyssey House NSW, which is one of Australia’s largest alcohol and other drug treatment services and helps people from around the country.

Released today, the 2018 Odyssey House NSW Annual Report shows a record 54 per cent of residential rehabilitation clients in the 2017-18 financial year named methamphetamine-type drugs (e.g. ‘ice’ or crystal meth, speed, base) as their principal drug of concern[i]. This is up 10.2 per cent on 2017 admissions (49% of clients) and up 80 per cent on 2012 (30% of clients), when methamphetamine replaced alcohol at the number one position.

Odyssey House NSW CEO Julie Babineau[ii] said methamphetamine was also the main concern for 36 per cent of people undertaking treatment at Odyssey House’s eleven new community services. These facilities opened across Sydney in 2017 to provide free non-residential counselling and support to individuals and their families impacted by alcohol and other drug use and mental illness.

“The demand for our services continues to grow due to the increased use of methamphetamines and prescription drugs and the ongoing impact of alcohol, cannabis and heroin on not only the individuals, but their families and communities,” Ms Babineau said.

“In particular, ‘ice’ can rapidly have serious adverse impacts on people’s personal lives and their physical and mental health, and most find it very difficult to stop using the drug without help. Some people quickly spiral downwards; others may be able to sustain a relatively normal life for a while before they or their families reach out for help.

“Alcohol remains a significant problem, named by one in five (20%) Odyssey House residential services clients as their principal drug of concern in 2018 (22% in 2017). In our community services, one in three (29%) clients cited alcohol as their main drug of concern.

Excessive or non-medical use of prescription opioids like fentanyl or oxycodone accounted for 3 per cent of our residential admissions in 2018, up from 1.3 per cent in 2017. In our community services, 2.1 per cent of clients named prescription opioids as their principal drug of concern.

“These figures are currently quite low, but there’s rising public health concern here and overseas about increases in poisoning and overdoses from prescription opioids[iii]. We are keeping an eye on the situation and we’re ready to help if and when more people reach out for treatment.

“People may not realise their drug use is problematic, don’t recognise how it’s impacting on them or others, or they don’t want to admit to ‘an addiction’ because of the public stigma still attached to this treatable health condition,” she said.

“Regardless of their drug of concern, we encourage people to get treatment sooner rather than later, such as in the community through their GP or a counsellor while they continue their day-to-day lives, or in our residential withdrawal unit or rehabilitation program.

“Our message at Odyssey House is: Don’t wait until your drug use is having severe negative consequences for you and your family, such as job loss, relationship breakdowns or physical or mental health problems. With some drugs, such as strong prescription painkillers or heroin, the first major consequence may actually be life-threatening.

“Overcoming alcohol and other drug dependence and rebuilding your life requires significant effort, time and assistance, but you’re not alone and the benefits are well worth the investment.

“Government at all levels acknowledge that alcohol and other drug dependence is a health and social issue, and while funding is modest, the policy direction is welcome,” Ms Babineau said.

Federal and NSW government funding accounted for 71 per cent of Odyssey House’s income in 2017-18, with 29 per cent raised through philanthropy, in-kind support and treatment costs.

During the financial year, Odyssey House NSW assisted 2276 people: 678 in its renowned residential rehabilitation program, which treats people from around Australia, and 1598 through its 11 new community services around Sydney. Men accounted for 70 per cent of clients; 13 per cent of clients identified as Indigenous.

Odyssey House’s programs help clients overcome drug use disorders, deal with underlying personal issues, manage mental illness, develop coping strategies, learn practical life skills (e.g. parenting, anger management, job-seeking, communication skills), prevent relapse and access other support.

More than 40,000 people have been assisted to overcome dependence on alcohol and other drugs since Odyssey House NSW opened in 1977.

Odyssey House NSW residential withdrawal and rehabilitation services are based in south-western Sydney. Odyssey House has 11 community-based treatment services around greater Sydney:

  • Central and Eastern Sydney region: Redfern, Canterbury
  • South Western Sydney region: Campbelltown, Fairfield, Bowral, Tahmoor
  • Western Sydney region: Blacktown, Doonside
  • Sydney North region: Chatswood, Manly, Pymble.

Contact Odyssey House on 1800 397 739 or visit for information and general advice on residential services, community services, aftercare, Magistrates Early Referral into Treatment and other support.

For a copy of the 2018 Odyssey House Annual Report visit:

Using both motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioural therapy

A training opportunity:

Why do you need both MI and CBT? 

Motivational Interviewing (or Motivational Enhancement Therapy) and cognitive behaviour therapy (typically Relapse Prevention Therapy) are the two core skills in AOD therapeutic work.  It makes sense to combine a therapy that increases motivation with one that enhances emotional and behavioural skills. These are the two things that are often missing or underdeveloped in AOD clients.

But they come from very different theoretical frameworks.  MI comes from a humanistic tradition in the style of Carl Rogers.  It’s a directive client centred therapy.  Relapse prevention, on the other hand, is one of the behavioural and cognitive therapies.

So how do we integrate the two?  Most research using these two different theoretical frameworks uses MI in the first 1-3 sessions to increase motivation to change and then, sequentially, CBT to improve emotional and behavioural regulation.

This is an effective approach if someone has low motivation to change their drug use when they come into treatment, but what about people who are already motivated?  And motivations waxes and wanes over time, what happens when motivation drops in the middle of treatment?

The real art to AOD work is being able to seamlessly use the two approaches right through treatment.  We aren’t talking about the strategies and techniques here, although they can be useful.  What is needed is an understanding of how people change, an ability to listen for what MI calls ‘change talk’ and the ability to adapt and move between the two styles collaboratively providing direction and strategy (CBT) or using a more questioning style (MI) to assist the client to move forward to change.

360EDGE is offering two workshops in August to help you develop these skills and understand how and when to utilise them seamlessly throughout treatment from assessment to closure. 




21ST August

FORGET THE A-B-C’S.  Come to this fun interactive workshop and go behind the scenes to understand the mechanics of CBT for AOD.  Find out what makes CBT tick so you can tailor strategies and treatment to different client presentations.

This foundation workshop offers a practical introduction to core practice skills in AOD treatment.

This workshop is for practitioners new to CBT, new to AOD, or wanting to brush up on their core CBT skills (Beginner to intermediate level)

  • Understand the underlying drivers of change in CBT
  • Learn how to structure a session to get the best outcomes
  • Master the key strategies and when to use them

Book your place here


Integrating MI and CBT in AOD

22 August

Find out how to effectively blend the two core interventions in AOD treatment to achieve better client outcomes.  This practice based workshop shows you how and when to utilise MI and CBT seamlessly throughout treatment from assessment to closure.

This workshop is for those with some basic knowledge of CBT and MI wanting to refine their practice.  (Intermediate to advanced practitioners)

Book your place here


Cost (per workshop)
Earlybird $350 (by 7 August)
Standard: $450 (after 7 August)
Includes electronic handouts and resources and unlimited free follow-up support post training, and morning and afternoon teas and lunch

Contact us for special rates for groups of 5 or more

Rydges St Kilda
Contact us for special rates on accommodation

Jobs – Programs Manager – NSW

Job at Hepatitis NSW:


Programs Manager

Full-time, 35 hours per week (on-going contract)

Salary $74,493 base ($82,575 including superannuation and annual leave loading)

Full salary packaging is available.

We are seeking a highly motivated person to join our team. Reporting to the Deputy Chief Executive Officer, your primary responsibility is to coordinate, strategically develop and manage our programs team which includes our education projects (workforce development, capacity building, and Aboriginal projects) and our Community Support services (Hepatitis Infoline, treatment access and support projects, Peer Projects and Counselling).

You will supervise and manage a small team including casual staff and volunteers. You will also contribute to the planning and development of our general service delivery programs and to policy development.

Your demonstrated experience includes:

  • Education, training, and group work
  • An understanding of one or more of the following: counselling, chronic disease self-management or social work
  • Staff recruitment and management
  • An understanding of access and equity issues.


You will have the ability to develop a thorough understanding of medical and social implications of viral hepatitis, as well as a commitment to harm reduction and health promotion concepts as they relate to injecting drug use.

You also have relevant qualifications or experience in social services, health or education, excellent verbal and written communication skills, and exceptional organisational abilities

Closing date: 9am Thursday 12 April 2018

Interviews: Week commencing 16 April 2018


A job pack containing job description, selection criteria, terms and conditions of employment and a guide for job applicants must be obtained before applying.



Our offices are in Surry Hills, Sydney and are wheelchair-accessible.

  • Hepatitis NSW is committed to the ideal of equal opportunity in employment and does not discriminate against applicants or employees on any grounds.
  • People with lived experience of viral hepatitis are encouraged to apply.
  • We also encourage applications from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.


Participants needed for research study

Have you recovered from an alcohol addiction? If so, a team of researchers at the University of New South Wales want to hear from you.

If you are 18 or over, live in Australia, and have recovered from an alcohol addiction, take part in a 15-20 minute survey and go into the draw to win 1 of 15 $100 Coles Myer gift cards. Follow the link here to find out more:

Canberra Service Launch

The Canberra Alliance for Harm Minimisation and Advocacy (CAHMA), The Connection and the Australian Injecting & Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL) are hosting a major community event to open CAHMA and The Connection’s new premises in Belconnen and mark World Hepatitis Day in the nation’s capital.

The event will be attended by around 100 community members, including politicians, CEOs, funding bodies, community workers and service users and boasts an impressive line-up of speakers talking about the challenges of addressing viral hepatitis and the range of services available in the ACT.

In Australia in 2015 it was estimated that 209,000 people were living with chronic hepatitis C and 239,000 with chronic hepatitis B.  In the ACT approximately 3,600 people are living with hepatitis C and 4,000 with hepatitis B.  The burden of disease and mortality associated with hepatitis B and hepatitis C continues to increase, and preventable infections continue to occur.

Speakers will include:

  • Aunty Agnes Shea, Ngunnawal Elder – Welcome to Country
  • Dr Nadeem Siddiqui, Executive Director of Clinical Services, Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service
  • John Didlick, Executive Officer, Hepatitis ACT
  • Chris Gough, Manager, CAHMA and The Connection


DATE:            Thursday 27 July 2017

TIME:             11.30am-12.15pm (community BBQ to follow)

VENUE:         Margaret Timpson Park

Corner Chandler St and Benjamin Way, Belconnen (across from Belconnen Westfield)


Background to the organisations:

CAHMA is an integral part of the ACT’s alcohol and other drugs (AOD) sector and exists to promote the health and human rights of people who use, or have used, drugs.  CAHMA provides a range of services to reduce drug related harms to individuals, families and communities, including in the key areas of:

  • harm reduction information and education
  • overdose prevention and management
  • peer treatment support and advocacy
  • ensuring culturally appropriate service provision for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

The Connection – CAHMA’s dedicated program for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people – delivers a comprehensive, person-centred suite of services designed to reduce the disproportionate impact of blood-borne viruses (BBV), sexually transmissible infections (STI), and AOD issues on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in the ACT and surrounding region.

AIVL is the ACT-based national organisation representing people who use/have used illicit drugs and is the peak body for the state and territory peer-based drug user organisations (including CAHMA).