Church of Scientology drug rehab centre rejected

ABC News, Australia/April 30, 2014

A plan for a controversial Church of Scientology drug rehabilitation centre on the New South Wales Central Coast has been rejected.

Wyong Council has this week knocked back a proposal by an offshoot of the Church of Scientology, the Association for Better Living and Education, to run a rehabilitation facility in the Yarramalong Valley.

ABLE wanted to run the Narconon treatment program, which has been associated with deaths in the US and Europe.

Wyong Mayor, Doug Eaton says while the Church of Scientology's involvement did not influence Council's decision, its method of treatment was a factor.

"To be allowed in the area it'd have to be defined as a hospital and there wasn't enough material to demonstrate it could be so defined because my understanding of the rehab process it that it is more of a religious process than it is a medical process," he said.

Councillor Eaton says ABLE still has the right to appeal against the decision in the Land and Environment Court.

"The reason I am slightly concerned about it is that they have gone ahead and purchased the land," he said.

"Mind you if they do go to court, Council will obviously fight the case and try to prove our refusal was proper."

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