WA Alcohol and Other Drug Sector Conference 2021

7-8 October Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre

Hosted by the Western Australian Network of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies (WANADA), the conference will provide a platform for esteemed local, national, and international speakers with presentations that reflect contemporary issues affecting the sector. Presentations will be informed by our conference themes: the impact of COVID-19, co-occurring and complex issues, law reform, and health reform.

The conference will actively incorporate stories from consumers, family members, community members, support workers, health care professionals, decision makers and academics. By offering a diversity of stories, we can shift perspectives and show that alcohol and other drugs are relevant to all in the community.

The conference will feature the Western Australian Alcohol and Other Drug Excellence Awards, recognising outstanding alcohol and other drug programs, projects and practice in the sector.

Shifting perspective: Alcohol and other drugs, everybody’s story will provide valuable opportunities for professional networking, collaboration, discussion, and debate around the themes of the conference.

Kristy

Consumer. Support Worker.

“Often society labels someone with a serious addiction and writes them off. They don’t take into consideration the possibility of serious trauma or the fact that this person could be a mother, father, son, daughter, husband or wife. They are quite often kind, caring, productive members of society. I was given a place to stay, professional support in a caring non - judgmental environment. [I] now work in homelessness. I see myself in so many of the residents where I work, and now I know that there is hope and a future in every one of them. As long as they are ready, and the professional support is available to them, they are able to succeed in life, just like I did."

Headshot of Kristy

“Often society labels someone with a serious addiction and writes them off. They don’t take into consideration the possibility of...

Matt

Peer support worker. Student.

"A shift in perspective on AOD use in the community will contribute to reducing the social and structural stigma that is felt by so many people with AOD issues. It has the potential to ‘normalise’ AOD issues in the community to reduce social isolation and increase the likelihood of people establishing links with community support systems. My shift in perspective came when I was challenged on a number of fronts whilst in residential rehab and I realised that distress caused by AOD use, was a community wide issue and the support I received from virtual strangers, saved my life."

Headshot of Matt

"A shift in perspective on AOD use in the community will contribute to reducing the social and structural stigma that...

My Story

“Often society labels someone with a serious addiction and writes them off. They don’t take into consideration the possibility of serious trauma or the fact that this person could be a mother, father, son, daughter, husband or wife. They are quite often kind, caring, productive members of society.

KRISTY, Consumer. Support Worker.

My Story

"The community having a positive shift in perspective on alcohol and other drug use will allow an addict who is in their recovery to become a productive, functional, valuable member in society. This will reduce harm in our community.”

LUKE, Consumer. Support Worker.

My Story

“If people across the community had a greater understanding of why people used drugs and alcohol, and recognised the complexity of factors that influence use, there may be a chance for more compassion and less stigma for both users and their families. This shift in the community’s perspective, to a more holistic view, could lead to the development of more effective services and supports, for both users and their families.”

DEB, Mother