The provision of services based on splitting these into two distinct areas of treatment does not adequately support our clients' needs. They often have multiple difficulties with both drugs and alcohol, this causes problems with access to treatment options as they are currently configured.
Statutory and voluntary community-based services should not treat drug and alcohol dependency as separate issues, but rather as effects of the same causes.
We also believe that abstinence is a very effective method of treatment for some clients, and that the pathway through residential detoxification and rehabilitation treatment - enabling them to live drug and alcohol-free lives - is crucial. However, a high percentage of St Mungo's clients are unable to meet the demands of residential treatment and need the opportunity to stabilise their substance use or alcohol use; first through harm-minimisation interventions, and then through treatment such as methadone or subutex prescriptions.
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"The people at Cedars saved my life. When I relapsed from drug treatment I went back and they didn't judge me. If I felt like using again, I'd talk to the workers and they would try and talk me round. If St Mungo's outreach and Cedars hadn't come along, I would still be on the streets..." Clare, St Mungo's resident