Australian Senator Jacqui Lambie of the Palmer United Party (PUP)
Australian Senator Jacqui Lambie of the Palmer United Party (PUP) AFP PHOTO - William WEST

Lambie backs Hard Yakka to fight ice crisis

INDEPENDENT Senator Jacqui Lambie believes Bob Davis' Hard Yakka is the only youth boot camp that can tackle the nation's addiction to the drug ice.

Speaking to the Chronicle, Senator Lambie heaped praise on the former special forces instructor for his "90% success rate" rehabilitating troubled youth.

"To be able to turn these kids' lives around in a very short period of time like his Hard Yakka program does is phenomenal," Senator Lambie said.

"I've never seen any other youth program that is able to do what Bob does."

But $300,000 worth of State Government funding for Mr Davis' program is currently being reviewed after a two-year trial.

Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders has previously stated his concerns about the camp and repeatedly refused invitations from Mr Davis to attend graduations and inspections.

However, Ms Lambie said she would "absolutely" push for his program to be rolled out nationwide.

"We have an ice crisis out there at the moment," she said.

"I believe Bob Davis' Hard Yakka is the only youth program that will be able to tackle it.

"If I can get the program spread it will be directed by Bob Davis; he's proven himself, he's a proven outfit - I'll tell you what, I love it."

The support from Senator Lambie was welcomed by Mr Davis as he attempts to turn his military camp into a national program, despite the likely loss of state funding this year.

Senator Lambie has agreed to attend a meeting on June 10 when Mr Davis will outline where he plans to go next with Operation Hard Yakka.

"I'm not closing down," he insisted.

"I want to take the program national."

Mr Davis said parents were ringing him from right across the nation chasing his services.

While having state funding would make it easier for him to operate, Mr Davis said a fee-for-service program would continue even if the funding ceased.

A Brisbane-based evaluation team is currently assessing Hard Yakka, with the funding up for review in July.



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