Swanswell welcomes Nick Clegg’s royal commission backing

14 December 2012

Swanswell’s welcoming the Deputy Prime Minister’s calls for a royal commission to look at Britain’s drugs laws but it says more focus should be on why people take drugs in the first place.

The national recovery charity, which wants to achieve a society free from problem alcohol and drug use, is responding to news that Nick Clegg is for a commission, first tabled by MPs this week as part of the Home Affairs Committee report ‘Drugs: breaking the cycle’.

The Deputy Prime Minister’s comments come just days after Prime Minister David Cameron and Home Secretary Theresa May rejected the idea of a fundamental review of Britain’s drug laws because drug use is falling and treatment numbers are rising, reports BBC News.

But Swanswell believes a review of drugs as a whole is needed and would welcome any public debate into how we can tackle the problems caused by illicit drug use.

Debbie Bannigan, Swanswell’s Chief Executive, said: ‘Calls for a royal commission and public debate into drugs are certainly welcome, as it’s clear that the current approach isn’t working and something needs to be done now.

But, while much of the focus of existing conversations is on the laws around drug use and decriminalisation, we think more focus should be around why people are taking drugs in the first place.

There can be many complex reasons behind someone’s drug use, so it’s important to identify and address those issues first before you can approach how best to change their behaviour through appropriate support.

Ideally we’d like to be able to prevent problems in the first place by helping people sift through the mixed messages using better education and clearer information, so they can make their own informed decisions about drugs.

However, tackling drug misuse is not something any one government, organisation or individual can do on their own – we all have a part to play.’







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