- Preventing young people from becoming drug misusers;
The majority of respondents from the DAG research conducted just prior to the last census, suggested that drug and alcohol use amongst young South Asians in Blackburn is rising. Most feel that levels of use are currently higher amongst young men although levels of use amongst young women are also said to be rising.
BHDG – DAG has already started to address these areas by partnership working with Lancashire Police, BwD DAAT, local places of religious worship & community groups, through holding drug education workshops and seminars at community venues.
Preventing Young People From Becoming Drug Misusers
Knowledge around the risks and harms of substance abuse
Definition of Level:
Enhancing an individual’s/ communities knowledge around making informed decisions
- Develop competent and skilled individuals via training and education to deliver learning workshops
- Education to young people around the risks and harms of drugs
- Provide community education around substance misuse – via events and learning workshops “parents as educators“
- Develop a drama workshop to promote drug education and deliver to various schools and community venues
- Provide awareness and promote local substance misuse services and provisions
- Provide Information in multi lingual format, both written and orally
Reducing the use of drugs through increased participation in treatment programs
It is clear that the stigma of substance use and fear of recrimination is still a significant issue in Blackburn with Darwen’s South Asian communities, whilst some suggest that the sheer number of families who are having problems around substance use means that there is a greater acceptance of the issue.
Promoting local drug treatment services to those who are affected by substance abuse, through the training of individuals and organisations who encounter people affected by substance misuse. This will ensure there is a procedure for effective sign posting.
Support & guide individuals and families who are experiencing issues around substance abuse.
Enhancing Individuals and families knowledge of local provisions and identify gaps in provision
COMMUNITY INTERACTORS: Provide training and education to communities, local businesses and institutes, who may interact with people suffering from substance misuse, so they can provide appropriate referrals and sign posting. E.g,. taxi drivers, restaurants, businesses etc.
SKILLED IAG VOLUNTEERS: Develop competent and skilled individuals from within the community to advise / sign post / peer support; people who are concerned about their own or family member’s substance abuse. IAG qualified volunteers providing referrals to Tier 2 treatment.
FAMILY SUPPORT: Develop and run a family support self-help group in Blackburn; specifically aimed at the BME community, who understand cultural stigma and attitudes. Family peer-to-peer support. To develop a team of volunteers who are willing to support the families of those who have been affected by drug related issues.
OTHER: Identify and set a friendly and sensitive venue where this support group can meet and provide support. Develop an online news letter Identify and develop Mentors to support people in recovery.
Informing providers of the needs of the local community
- Educate local service providers, and to present local needs and concerns
- A platform for local services to promote themselves.
- Influence policy for better outcomes
- Provide training program around cultural and religious needs
Fostering Coalitions and Networks
Bringing together groups and individuals for broader goals and greater impact
- Develop a partnership/membership list of community based stakeholders, e.g. madressas, churches, community centres etc.
- Engage and work with other local community groups to widen participation and impact – developing a Network of Networks.
Reducing drug-related crime
Evidence from the police and community respondents suggests that a number of South Asian men, working in groups, are engaged in street-level drug supply.
Crime is one of the great concerns in Britain. In poll after poll it appears as one of the major issues troubling voters. It’s an issue that concerns each and every community. There are no simple answers but we are looking at steps, we as a community can take to help cut/report crime.
Reduce and address drug related crime.
Definition of Level
Improve relationships between police and the local community, to enable more effective reporting of crime.
- To ensure that a representative of the BHDG is represented at every PACT meeting for the BHDG target areas
- To carry out a marketing campaign within the community to inform people of the recognised/ appropriate reporting mechanism.
- To establish a firm protocol between the community and the police in the reporting of drug related incidents.
- Police to provide local statistics on a monthly basis on drug related issues in the BHDG target areas
- Identify crime/drug dealing hotspots with the BHDG targets areas, and BHDG and police to develop action plan to combat these areas.
- To work with religious institutes in the delivery of crime related programmes, which could be incorporated within the drug program. Urgent messages could be conveyed at Friday prayers talk etc.
- To increase the confidence within the community to be more informed, support and challenge the drugs issue.
- To develop a team of volunteers from the community who are willing to become mentors for young people on drugs/ drug related crime and its impacts.