Preview: Watch the highlights: Full interviews to follow in January.
This Recovery News Special examines the coalition governments new drug strategy; a sea change in policy that puts drug free recovery at the top of the agenda.
In a dramatic shift from harm reduction, the new drug strategy makes abstinence and recovery the main priority, and for the first time recognises recovery as both an outcome and a process.
It is also the first time that alcohol has been included in a strategy that along with prescription and OTC drugs recognises the need to tackle dependence on ‘all drugs’ as a public health issue, as well as a special focus on multiple use and inter-generational use.
In a move that will see an overhaul of methadone prescribing, the drug strategy emphasises individual responsibility and offers incentives for choosing recovery. What it avoids is any softening on crime and reducing supply; there will be no liberalisation or decriminalisation.
The drug strategy also has big implications for services, with proposals for integration and co-operation not only between alcohol and drugs services, but also mental health, social services, housing, employment, criminal justice and the benefits system.
George Williams discusses the implications of the government drug strategy and whether it can live up to its aims with expert commentators -
• Anthony Massouras - Chairman of the Addiction Recovery Foundation and founder of Mimosa Healthcare Group
• Lord Mancroft - Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Drugs Misuse Group
• Nicolay Sorensen - Director of Policy and Communications at Alcohol Concern
• Christian Guy - Policy Group Manager at the Centre for Social Justice
• Brian Dudley - CEO Broadway Lodge
• Deidre Boyd - Editor of Addiction Today
This is a summary of the interviews to bring out the key points and opinions on the new strategy, and you will be able to see the full versions of each one in the new-year.
Produced in association with Addiction Today.