Drug addicts who refuse government support will face losing some of their benefits, under new government plans.
Ministers announcing the plans to promised a „generational shift“ in drug policy „to get people to take responsibility for their actions“.
Rather than the previous ‚harm reduction‘ strategy, the new plans will focus on ending addiction entirely.
Enforcing drug policy will also be devolved to ‚local partnerships‘ in combination with public health reforms announced last week.
A Home Office spokesman said: „In a major policy shift, the strategy puts drug -free recovery at the heart of the government’s response and puts more responsibility on individuals to seek help and overcome their dependency.“
Crime prevention minister James Brokenshire added: „Today’s message is clear. Simply focusing on reducing the harms cause by illicit drug use is no longer enough. We must focus on recovery as the most effective route out of dependency.“
So-called ‚legal highs‘ will undergo immediate temporary bans whiule their effects are investigated, while the government is also setting up a network of ‚recovery champions‘ – former addicts who will act as mentors to those currently in recovery.
More controversial is the decision to tie in addiction recovery to the benefits system to incentivise people to get clean.
Public health minister Anne Milton said: „Those who decide to go into treatment will be offered every support to help overcome their addiction, but those who refuse it will face the same benefit sanctions as every other jobseeker.“