DDN February 2022 February 2022 | Page 3


Drink and Drugs News is published by CJ Wellings Ltd , Romney House , School Road , Ashford , Kent TN27 0LT t : 0845 299 3429
Editor : Claire Brown e : claire @ cjwellings . com
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ON THE COVER : the power of lived experience


part 2 : use and safety


Menopause in recovery
4 NEWS Drinking more in lockdown ; case for peer-led NSP
8 CRUNCH TIME Delivering the drug strategy
14 STAND UP AND BE COUNTED Carl Hart ’ s call for real political change
15 THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE Drugs on the dancefloor
18 LETTERS & COMMENT Reactions to Dry January ; remembering Marcus
19 CAREERS I am an ... alcohol recovery practitioner ; outreach is back
20 BRIDGING THE GAP Transforming working practices

Vital shield of harm reduction 12 16


‘ Since I became the recovery peer mentor coordinator for Medway , I have been working along with the peer mentors to engage with clients that are struggling ... it ’ s a win-win all round .’
Donna from Social Interest Group in our Partner Updates at www . drinkanddrugsnews . com
DDN is a self-funded independent publication . Our bespoke partnership packages provide an opportunity to work closely with the magazine . Please get in touch to find out more .

Voice of experience is vital to infrastructure

Service user involvement , co-production , peer-led initiatives – whatever the terminology , we ’ re glad to see the renewed efforts to make the voice of experience a vital part of the infrastructure of services . Almost two decades ago when we started DDN , the two-year rule – a nebulous guideline about an amount of time required to be drug-free and therefore stable enough to enter full-time work , and grasped by many as a reason not to put service users on an equal footing – was a real barrier to admitting people back into employment and an equal status .
Now many organisations , including the Scottish Government , have realised the value of people with authentic experience in collaborating on the ‘ national mission on drug deaths ’ ( page 5 ). The LJWG are among those to go further by making the case for peers as the best people for the job with the highest chance of attracting participation in these vital services ( page 6 ). With the grassroots knowledge and experience embedded in major service providers ( page 16 ) and a keen appetite for collaboration between partners in health , substance use , police and social care ( page 20 ), the time is ripe for making focused , cost-effective – and representative – decisions that will transform the outlook for many . Claire Brown , editor Keep in touch at www . drinkanddrugsnews . com and @ DDNmagazine