Ensure equivalence of support for people in the Criminal Justice System
The high prevalence of problem drug use amongst those in contact with the criminal justice system provides an opportunity to detect, intervene or signpost those at known risk into treatment and support.
A specific example of this is the evidence of elevated risk at the time of release from custody, especially if release takes place at a time when support services and care – such as on a Friday going into a weekend – are not available to those who could be kept safer with them in place.
Equally, there is clear evidence that take-home naloxone programmes reduce deaths through opioid overdose for released prisoners. The Taskforce will work to develop anticipatory care through key services that can better protect the vulnerable from risks of harm and death associated with drugs through a transition for which we know there is a significant risk.