Police and Northland DHB say Te Ara Oranga meth action pilot is producing encouraging results but it is unclear whether its funding will continue beyond June.
The pilot, which was launched in August last year is a joint venture trialling an integrated model of police, health and community groups in attempt to rid the community of meth.
The Northland DHB and the police were allocated $3 million from proceeds of the Criminal Proceeds (Recovery) Act to deliver the Te Ara Oranga Methamphetamine Demand Reduction strategy pilot for a year.
"Methamphetamine is the cause of too much harm in our communities and Te Ara Oranga shows the whole community is committed to working together to reduce this harm," Northland District Commander, Superintendent Russell Le Prou and General Manager of Mental Health and Addiction services at Northland DHB, Ian McKenzie, said in a joint statement.
"It is an ongoing pilot which was launched on August 31 which is yet to be formally evaluated. That being said, the results seen so far are encouraging,"
McKenzie said methamphetamine clinicians had been managing 71 clients since October 2017.
McKenzie also said 15 mental health and addiction clients are now in full-time employment due to the support from Employment Works, which is the employment support component of the pilot based in Dargaville.
"One employer has approached the navigators asking for more potential employees. There are some great stories including one user who could not see a way out of their addiction but is now in full time employment in a $48k + vehicle job," McKenzie said.
National's police spokesman Chris Bishop sent out a press release in early February urging the current Minister of Police, Stuart Nash, to "urgently fund meth action plan".
If you talk to people, they'll say it's making a real difference, Bishop said.
Police Minister Stuart Nash said police and DHB staff are assessing the results of the pilot and working with iwi organisations and others to determine the best way to 'continue this important work'.
"Budget decisions for the next financial year are currently being considered and announcements will be made soon," Nash said.
While Te Ara Oranga has started the journey to rid Northland of the harm caused by methamphetamine there is still much work to be done, Le Prou said.
"Eliminating methamphetamine from communities requires a whole of community approach which is what Te Ara Oranga has been designed to achieve, community engagement across Northland has been fantastic and is making a difference locally," Le Prou said.
"Police funding expires at the end of June 2018 and police is yet to provide advice to the Police Minister on the future of Te Ara Oranga," McKenzie said.
"Health funding expires in March and Northland DHB has provided advice to the Health Minister."