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Drugs in Moray: 'Radical rethink' needed on policy

By Alistair Whitfield

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A Labour list MSP has called for a "radical rethink" as figures last week revealed record levels of drug deaths.

David Stewart, whose Highlands and Islands ward includes Moray, believes a change of political and policy direction is needed to end the stigma of drug use and to save lives.

Data published last week showed that another 12 drug-related deaths occurred last year in Moray.

Scotland continues to have the highest drug-related death rate in Europe and a rate almost 3.5 times the rest of the UK.

Mr Stewart, who is also Shadow Public Health Spokesperson, said: "Every drug-related death is an avoidable tragedy and we aren’t immune from this issue.

"The scale of the crisis means a radical rethink is required with a joint effort from all political leaders to tackle this human rights emergency.

"People who misuse drugs and their families need urgent action.

"Safe consumption facilities and increased rapid access to residential rehabilitation are vital and could happen today.

David Stewart MSP.
David Stewart MSP.

"All political parties must put their heads together and work towards saving lives to help Scotland’s recovery community thrive."

Related story: Scotland drug deaths highest in Europe

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