Friday, 29 December 2006

New approach to drug policy

I'm pleased to see Humfrey Malins MP's paper on conservative home about a "fresh look at drugs policy".

Last year I was very humbled when invited, with David Davis, into a charitably run drug rehabilitation home Three former addicts told us their history with drugs. Each had started off stealing alcohol as a 10-14 year old, moved on to cannabis and then to "harder" drugs. All three had been “clean” for over 6 months and described the battle to get that far – but each also stated that staying off drugs is a continuous battle.

This month we read bios of each of the victims of the dreadful murders in Ipswich. This rammed home again the message that all-consuming drug addiction is not confined to poor housing estates. It can take hold of a young person from any walk of life.

I agree that a new approach must be taken to drugs policy and that cannabis is much too dangerous to be a class C drug. Residential rehab is vital – but so a long term support network once the residential part is over. Charities and voluntary workers must be supported.

From the stories that I am told across the country, I believe that we are at a tipping point in our attitude towards drugs. Unless more serious efforts are made to reduce drug addiction now, the situation will become uncontrollable.


Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Dear Vicky,
Drugs are a major problem in every region of the country. I am very pleased to see you highlight these issues. When cannabis was re-classed as a class C drug, I heard many children dangerously saying they thought it was safe. The message 'say no to drugs' must be kept consistent.
By the way - I saw you on the local television news today speaking up for the local parks and SSSI's. Really well done.
Michelle said...

Cannabis, dangerous? If I had my 'druthers, I would make alchohol illegal and cannabis legal. In all of my 53 years I have never heard of or seen anybody do something violent or stupid behind the herb...alone, mixed with alchohol yes but by itself NO.Alchohol on the other hand, by itself?? Too many incidents to count. Yes I smoke and I did not move on to harder drugs.