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A community response to alcohol and other drug issues in the City of Yarra
International Overdose Awareness Day Online Forum – Compassion Not Judgement

International Overdose Awareness Day Online Forum – Compassion Not Judgement


August 31


07:30 pm - 09:00 pm

Event Category:

Previous Event

Watch Now | Streamed Live on AUG 31st 7:30pm


Decades of expensive prohibition and policing haven’t reduced the harms associated with drug use. Policies focused on reducing harms and understanding people’s complex needs have produced far more positive results. A compassionate approach means understanding complex problems and appropriately resourcing responses that actually work.

International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) is a global event held on 31 August each year and aims to raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related death. Originating in Melbourne 2001, the day acknowledges the grief felt by families and friends by remembering those we have lost, or those who have sustained a permanent injury as the result of drug overdose. Our minds immediately go to illegal drugs when discussing overdose, however alcohol and prescription medication are two of our biggest killers.

In honour of loved ones lost and dearly missed, our aim is to raise awareness and reduce stigma within our communities around this significant health issue.

Guest speakers

Families and people with lived experience of the impact of drug overdose

  • MC – Jason Vandy (Aaron Short Awareness Association)
  • Mick Colton
  • Cherie Short
  • Debbie Warner (APOD)
  • Prof. Margaret Hamilton AO
  • Sam Biondo (Victorian Alcohol And Drugs Association)
  • Sione Crawford (Harm Reduction Victoria)
  • Dr. Nico Clark (Medically Supervised Injecting Room)



Photos from #IOAD2019 at North Richmond Town Hall

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