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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-18627: Michelle Ballantyne (South Scotland)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 6 September 2018

To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to support the estimated 1,800 children in East Lothian who have been identified by health and social care officials as living with a parent who has a drink problem.

Answered by: Maree Todd 20 September 2018

The Scottish Government recognise that children who live with a parent who have problematic substance use are among the most vulnerable in society. It is vital they are well supported, but we also want to prevent the damage occurring in the first place. That’s why tackling problem substance and alcohol use continues to be a priority for this Government.

Funding of £600,000 per year is provided to the CORRA Foundation who support Scottish voluntary organisations to deliver vital on the ground support to children and families across Scotland affected by substance and alcohol use.

The CORRA Foundation have also received a further £160,000 for the delivery of the recommendations contained in "Everyone Has A Story", an action learning project that aims to hear the voices and experiences of children and young people whose parents are in recovery from drugs and alcohol.

Funding of £280,000 (for 2018-19) has been provided to Scottish Families Affected by Alcohol and Drugs (SFAD) to support families across Scotland affected by a loved one’s substance and/or alcohol use.

Work is currently underway on the new alcohol and drug strategy which will ensure that health and social needs are taken into account as part of people’s treatment and also those more widely affected, including children and families. In addition to the investment of over £746 million since 2008 to tackle substance use, the new strategy is being backed with funding of an additional £20 million per annum.

Midlothian and East Lothian Drug and Alcohol Partnership (MELDAP) work with a number of services in the area to support children affected by parental substance use. Relevant training is provided to all services, which raises awareness of the impact substance use has on a child and also helps improved identification of, and support for, children affected by parental substance use.