Alcohol and drug treatment in the EU: Are there lessons for Scotland?

26/09/2007

Scotland’s approach to alcohol and drug treatment will be in the spotlight tomorrow at a Scotland Futures Forum lecture held as part of the 'Fresh Perspectives on Alcohol and Drugs' project.

The lecture at the Scottish Parliament will be given by the Trimbos Institute from the Netherlands and is entitled “Policy, Practice and Treatment: A New Paradigm for Scotland?”

As part of a series, this lecture will draw on the Institute’s impressions of alcohol and drug treatment in Scotland and look at evidence and best practice from across other EU countries, which may have particular interest for Scotland.

The speakers will be Victor Everhardt from the Trimbos Institute and Vincent Hendriks from the Parnassia Addiction Research Centre in the Netherlands. David Liddell from the Scottish Drugs Forum will also be speaking.

The lecture will look at whether Scotland can learn from other approaches being used across Europe, and whether there needs to be a change in thinking about how Scotland addresses the issue of alcohol and drug abuse in the future.

Presiding Officer Alex Fergusson MSP said:

"As the Scottish Parliament continues to grow and develop, it is important that we share experience with other countries and institutions. This lecture, as part of the Futures' Forum study, is an important part of this learning process.".

Background information on the ‘Fresh Perspectives on Alcohol and Drugs’ project

Holyrood's think-tank, Scotland's Futures Forum, is carrying out an innovative study into alcohol and drugs use in Scotland.

The aim of the project is to look at the following question: “How can Scotland reduce the damage to its population through alcohol and drugs by half by the year 2025?”

The Forum seeks to stimulate open and honest debate on the causes and impacts of drug and alcohol misuse across Scottish society.

The study will consider the views of local communities, a wide range of harm reduction measures, the role of poverty, and review international best practice. The project aims to inform public policy debate and challenge policy makers to consider new long-term approaches to problematic alcohol and drug use.

Background information on Scotland’s Futures Forum

Scotland’s Futures Forum was created by the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body in August 2005. The forum aims to identify key challenges facing the nation and stimulate debate between MSPs, academics, civic society, wealth creators and international organisations on the ways of meeting them.

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