Minister outlines plans for £18 million investment.
Women, families and children are among those who will benefit from separate funds worth a total of £18 million to improve drugs services.
Four schemes are planned for May with the funds coming from the additional £250 million announced by the First Minister to tackle the drug deaths emergency over the next five years.
The four projects will aim to develop consistent treatment standards around the country and ensure more people can get access to services that can reduce harm, provide treatment and ultimately save their lives.
The four funds are:
- a £5 million Communities Fund to provide resources to community and third sector organisations to increase capacity
- a £5 million Improvement Fund to support improvements to services for outreach, treatment, rehabilitation and aftercare, with dedicated support for women
- a £3 million Families and Children Fund to support the families of those affected by drug misuse during treatment
- a £5 million Recovery Fund for additional residential rehabilitation capacity
Ruth Maguire said:
“The number of drug related deaths in Scotland is unacceptable. Each and everyone of those lives lost is a tragedy – individual lives cut short too soon.
I commend the Scottish Government for acknowledging that more could have been done sooner.
Now change must happen and this requires funding, so I welcome this announcement.
Going forward we must ensure that the right support is available in our communities at the right time for individuals”.
Minister for Drugs Policy Angela Constance said:
“We have said a national mission is needed to tackle the drug deaths emergency and this coming year will see funding for alcohol and drugs support increasing to £140.7 million.
“This latest round of funding sees us build on the £1 million Communities Fund and £1 million Improvement Fund we launched in February. We want to make additional resources available to more community and third sector organisations so that we can support more people into treatment and offer support to their families.
“I am pleased we are also able to direct more funding to develop services specifically for women and children. We want to make it easier for women to access treatment by removing any barriers such as a lack of childcare.
“I have already committed to taking action on the recommendations from the Residential Rehabilitation Working Group and this will be backed by £100 million over the next five years.
“We recognise residential rehabilitation may not be for everyone which is why we are determined, as part of our national mission, to make sure that people can access whatever treatment is right for them in the right place at the right time.”
Scottish Families Affected by Alcohol and Drugs CEO Justina Murray said:
“There is an urgent need to improve support for children, young people and adult family members – all of whom are harmed by others’ alcohol and drug use, and all of whom have faced even bigger harms during the COVID pandemic.
“We know most family members remain hidden due to the stigma, shame and secrecy of substance use in the family, along with the lack of visible, high quality family support across Scotland. We look forward to working with the Scottish Government and with families to transform this situation, so that every family member in Scotland can reach the support they need, regardless of their situation or location.”