Critics including former Scientologist Paul Schofield and independent South Australian senator Nick Xenophon have called on the government to review a Parks Victoria offer of a 21-year lease on O'Shannassy Lodge to Narconon, a group closely linked to Scientology.
"The point of Narconon is to get vulnerable people signed up to Scientology and to push money up to Scientology management," said Mr Schofield, a former Narconon executive and ordained minister of Scientology."Why is the Brumby government sponsoring a Scientology recruitment group aimed at vulnerable people?"
In 2008 The Age revealed that a drug treatment program based on the teachings of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard had operated a secretive and secluded rehabilitation center at the publicly owned lodge east of Warburton. The lodge, which sits behind a locked gate at the end of a five-kilometre bush track, is one of hundreds of properties managed by Parks Victoria but leased to companies and community groups in a bid to offload maintenance costs.
With the lapse of the old lease, the property was put out to public tender. Narconon won that tender and is now finalizing negotiations over the 21-year lease.
Last week Senator Xenophon questioned the state's lease to Narconon. "It's very important that this not be used as a stalking horse to recruit people to the Church of Scientology. After all, this is a state asset we're talking about," he said.
Senator Xenophon called for Narconon's books to be opened to the government and an assessment made of its effectiveness as a drug rehabilitation program. [more >>>]
Jerry Armstrong / David Love on Narconon, Canada
Jerry Armstrong and David Love discuss his time in Narconon as a patent and a counselor.
[short version: 20 min]
The Edge: David Love On Scientology/Narconon, Canada
WXYB 1520 AM HawkRadio, Tampa Florida. David Love discusses the Narconon/Scientology connection in Canada in this college radio interview with Tom Smith.[long version: 60 min]
Thanks: Sponge, Anonymous,