Closure of a residential detox unit based in Leith

I received this as a comment today and have decided to post it in full as it touches on many themes this blog tries to cover. Most especially it points up the disregard with which those who hold the purse strings treat voluntary organisations. Their cost effectiveness and success are mainly ignored as that success cannot be claimed by those who hold political power.

It is estimated that for every £1 given in grants/funding to a voluntary organisation £9 worth of return is generated.

One Response to “Leith News”

  1. Hello

    I am writing to you to express concerns over the closure of a residential detox unit based in Leith,Edinburgh.

    The closure of a unique drug rehabilitation centre in Leith will ensure that drug related deaths will increase at a staggering rate.

    The Links Project, on Links Place, is the only centre of its kind to offer residential drug rehabilitation and detox services in the Lothians. The new drugs strategy for Scotland which was recently announced is focused on recovery. The Links project has been promoting this in Edinburgh for nearly 14 years and continues to do so.

    However, the centre’s service provider, charity Turning Point Scotland (TPS), has been forced to pull out of funding the service following a less-than-expected allocation from the city council’s health and social care budget.

    The service is now due to close by November. Edinburgh City Council have continually cut funding which has forced this service to run at a considerable deficit. This currently stands at £143,000. TPS has been meeting this deficit from its own financial reserves. Why should a charity have to bail out Edinburgh City Council in order to provide an essential and unique service to help and protect THEIR people with addiciton?

    Leith Labour councillor Gordon Munro said the centre was one of the first victims of the council’s “hidden” cuts in community services. He said: “I’ve seen no evidence that the need for this centre has disappeared, and I fear it won’t be the last third-sector organisation to go this way.”

    However, the City Council and NHS Lothian say they remain committed to providing services that address the needs of people with drug problems, and interim arrangements will be in place for when the Links Project closes. There are presently 465 users waiting for a six-week space in one of the project’s 12 beds at the centre and Edinburgh has an estimated 3500 drug users. Currently the only provision in place is 2 beds at the Ritson clinic (Royal Ed) and are “pouring” money into community detox by upping the number of community detox nurses from 1 to 2! No provision has been put in place to help the people in crisis which this service provides a vital lifeline for.

    This is a horrific and appaling waste of a resource to help people of the Lothians.

    So, how can you help? The Links Project is essential to the communitites that are reached by you, as a media outlet, as you translate all the information for them. The message that this valuable service will be lost needs to be communicated to as much of the population as it can. People need to be aware of what Edinburgh City Council are doing and what effect it will have on them.

    Edinburgh City Council need to be held accountable for what they are about to do. This is not a lost cause, hundreds of local people have already voiced their support against the closure of this service.

    Please spread the word. The Links Project is the only centre available to those in crisis in Edinburgh today. If it closes, the drugs epidemic will continue to spiral out of control, and for those who would have previously accessed it and progressed onto long term rehab projects, there will be no available first stage support. More people will die and at a faster rate than ever before. More people will remain in a spiral of addiction that will force them into crime. More families will be affected, more children will their parents, more parents will lose their children.

    thankyou for your time.

One Response

  1. Oh, Thanks! Really interesting. Big ups!

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