The UK government has announced £148 million of new investment to cut crime associated with drug use. The announcement was made today (20 January 2021) by the Home Secretary, Priti Patel and the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock.

The investment is to be split between treatment and enforcement, with £80 million allocated for drug treatment services across England. This money will help increase treatment places for people leaving prison and divert offenders into “tough and effective” community sentences. Part of the £80 million will be used to enhance RECONNECT services that support offenders with complex needs to get support from mental health and addiction treatment services for up to 1 year after release.

A further £28 million will be spent on a trial of Project ADDER (Addiction, Diversion, Disruption, Enforcement and Recovery). Project ADDER will be piloted in Blackpool, Hastings, Middlesbrough, Norwich and Swansea Bay and is set to combine “targeted and tougher” policing with enhanced treatment for addiction.

Alongside the investment in treatment services, the government has announced an extra £40 million for police forces to address country lines drug dealing through targeting local gang leaders.


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