Scotland gets a new drug and alcohol strategy

The Scottish Government launched a new drug and alcohol strategy today (28 November 2018) - the country's first in 10 years.

Andrew Horne, Director of Addaction in Scotland said:

“This is a bold strategy that acknowledges the enormity of the task ahead. Most importantly it will help more people get the right help in the right place at the right time. That is the most critical test.

“The strategy creates the right balance between harm reduction and recovery. It recognises that ‘one-size-fits-all’ doesn’t work. We need to meet people where they are in their journey. The shift towards treating alcohol and drug problems as health and social care issues is very welcome. Nobody should be criminalised for health problems. People who need help should get it without judgement.

“We also welcome the strong emphasis on reaching people earlier and focusing on prevention as well as treatment. This is crucial. As a treatment provider we’re also pleased to see recognition of the huge impact of recovery communities across Scotland. Encouraging peer support is vital. We're pleased to see a desire to look again at drug consumption rooms and heroin prescribing. We need to be brave."

Andrew added: “We are realistic about the scale of the task ahead, particularly tackling the tragedy of drug and alcohol deaths across Scotland. We are confident this strategy will make a difference. The cost of drug and alcohol problems to individuals, families and communities can not be underestimated. This is an important step in the journey ahead for Scotland.”

Click here to view the Scottish Government's strategy in full

Media contact

Mark Byrne | Head of Media | Addaction

T: 020 7017 2747 | M: 079 6628 7949 | E: mark.byrne@addaction.org.uk