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An update on funding for substance misuse treatment in England

  • Publish Date: Posted about 1 year ago

Drug and alcohol abuse remains one of the UK’s biggest challenges. However, 16th February 2023 brought positive news from the Government, announcing that local authorities will receive additional funding through to 2025 to combat substance misuse. This support is welcomed by law enforcement and health and social departments nationwide. We’ve done an overview of the changes announced, and how you can find your next role in supporting those with substance misuse issues. 

What has been announced to boost drug and alcohol treatment?

The announcement confirms that £421 million of government funding will be allocated toward improving drug and alcohol addiction treatment and recovery. This extra funding follows the UK government’s record-breaking £780 million cash injection to rebuild drug treatment systems in 2021. Both investments underpin the country’s ten-year strategy to tackle the scourge of drugs and prevent crime. 

How will the extra funding help local authorities?

The extra funding will engage the creation and support of over 50,000 drug and alcohol treatment facilities. 

Apart from creating new job and recruitment opportunities, the funding will enable local authorities to: 

  • Provide more prison leavers with necessary treatment and recovery services.

  • Enhance the quality of the treatments provided, thus ensuring better outcomes with a focus on continuous rehabilitation.

  • Keep the streets clean and decrease crime by getting individuals out of addictions that ignite criminal activity.

  • Reverse the upward trend in drug deaths. 

  • Clamp down on criminal gangs profiting from the trade in illegal drugs.

Moreover, entire communities will benefit from residential rehabilitation or inpatient detoxification. This will help reduce relapse rates, strengthen families, and create a healthier culture for our country. 

How is funding allocated?

The funds will be distributed across one hundred and fifty-one local authorities in England. These authorities must be aligned with drug and alcohol treatment and recovery services. The funding will be issued in two instalments: £154.3 million for 2023-2024 and indicative funding of £266.7 million for 2024-2025.

According to the Department of Health and Social Care, areas with the highest need - based on the rate of drug deaths, deprivation, and distribution - will be prioritised. 

Basically, allocations will be directed at strengthening the work of local authorities and partners to enhance services that coincide with the UK’s 10-year strategy to combat substance misuse and crime. 

What treatment will be available with the new funding?

Another positive component of this additional government funding is strengthening traditional treatments and bringing new treatments and initiatives to the forefront. These treatments will be available for multiple substances, including powdered cocaine, ecstasy, prescription drugs, and cannabis.

An example of an actioned treatment program includes Leeds’ plans to target the needs of groups with the greatest social and economic deprivation and poor health outcomes. Expanding their treatments will increase their workforce by 85 full-time posts in 2023, making more care workers available to those in need.

Another example is Portsmouth’s initiative to develop peer-led outreach services. Here, authorities are recruited to engage drug users in hard-to-reach places. The goal is to enhance criminal justice teams to offer 7-day-a-week services in Portsmouth’s custody suite.

Find your next job with Service Care Solutions

This welcomed government funding has made substance misuse jobs and other jobs in social services and law enforcement more in demand than ever. It has also secured more job opportunities for those interested in following a career path in related industries. 

If you want to find a role that tackles substance abuse and other social issues, thus creating happier, healthier communities, we encourage you to apply for a job in healthcare with us. 

SCS is a dedicated talent acquisition partner with expertise in the Criminal Justice industry. We offer permanent, temporary, and locum work opportunities in both private and public sectors across the UK. Our team works diligently to place the best candidates with the best roles to help support a strong network that will make our country thrive.

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