DRUG DEATHS ON THE UP
Increase of more than 50 per cent in three years
The number of people dying from drugs in Peterborough has risen by 50 per cent over a three year period.
The number of drug-related deaths has risen from 23 in 2011-13 to 34 in 2014-16, according to new figures from the Office for National Statistics. Twenty-eight of the people who died were men and six were women.
A Peterborough City Council spokesman said: “On a national level there has been an increase in the availability and purity of heroin over recent years and a higher proportion of older heroin users in treatment with increasingly complex health needs.”
He added: “We continue to work with a range of local organisations in the city to respond to the harm caused by drug use. This included an audit of drug related deaths which occurred in 2015 in order to help focus future harm reduction work and resources.”
Ed Morrow, drugs policy lead at the Royal Society for Public Health, said: “While the UK Government stubbornly refuses to make meaningful moves towards a more progressive, public health-based approach to drug policy, and while local authority treatment budgets continue to be cut, it should come as no surprise that drug deaths in England and Wales are continuing to rise.”
In 2016 there was the highest number of drug-related deaths in England since records began in 1993.
A Government spokesperson said drug misuse is lower than it was 10 years ago and that last month it released a comprehensive new drugs strategy.
Support for substance abuse in Peterborough is provided by CPL Aspire - www. changegrowlive.org/content/ aspire-peterborough.