Drugs Commission: Meeting to discuss way forward

Drugs Commission: Meeting to discuss way forward Image

The Dundee Partnership Forum met today (October 23) to discuss the way forward for the city following the report from the Dundee Drugs Commission into the number of local drug-related deaths.

Titled ‘Responding to Drug Use with Kindness, Compassion and Hope’, the August report detailed a number of key recommendations, some of them immediate actions and others longer-term pieces of work to be delivered across a period of five years.

These include improving leadership, challenging stigma towards people who use drugs and their families and a new ‘system’ model of care to deliver services.

Today's meeting outlined the initial response of city partners to the report.

Strategic priorities in the Dundee Partnership’s Action Plan include: 

  • Take all available measures to tackle drugs deaths 
  • Take urgent action to ensure those at greatest risk are protected and engage with services 
  • Urgently strengthen the capacity and capability of specialist drug services in the short term 
  • Implement a revised person-centred, seamless and comprehensive model of care 
  • Win the trust and confidence of all stakeholders through effective Leadership, Governance and Accountability 
  • Ensure the meaningful involvement of people who experience problems with drugs, families and carers 
  • Confront and address stigma and strengthen mutual and community support 
  • Keep children safe from substance use and its consequences 
  • Implement trauma informed approaches, targeting those at increased risk of substance use / and death 
  • Tackle the root causes of substance use

Dundee City Council leader and chair of the Dundee Partnership Councillor John Alexander said: “All the Dundee partners are absolutely clear in their commitment that the commission’s findings represent a turning point for our city to prevent the scourge of drugs ripping families and communities apart.

“I am impressed by the insight and the perspective that the commission have given to us to map the way forward.

“Already, recommendations from the commission are being put into action and are making an impact.

“However, this is a long-term journey and we cannot cut corners when it comes to putting in place changes to save lives.

“There are no easy solutions.

“We are also keen that Dundee’s journey can influence the national situation and that is why we are asking the Scottish and UK governments to consider changes to legislation, funding and policies proposed by the commission.”

The Dundee Partnership is made up of representatives from key local public agencies, academic institutions and representatives of the business, voluntary and community sectors.

It pools the strengths of all partners to deliver a vision for the city which improves people’s lives. Among its key priorities is tackling the root causes of social and economic exclusion, creating a community which is healthy, safe, confident, educated and empowered.

The full report is available online here.

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