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FMQs: Yousaf ‘making same mistakes as Sturgeon’ on drugs deaths

Humza Yousaf is “making the same mistakes as Nicola Sturgeon” on drug deaths, according to the Scottish Conservatives.

Douglas Ross said at First Minister’s Questions that Humza Yousaf has “taken his eye off the ball” on drug deaths, just as his predecessor Nicola Sturgeon did.

The Scottish Conservative leader highlighted the closure of Turning Point 218 in Glasgow, a service that Humza Yousaf previously said does “excellent work”.

Douglas Ross also cited newspaper reports showing the SNP Government was aware Turning Point would be closed and didn’t step in to prevent it.

Unite the Union said today it “was crystal clear that the Scottish Government was central to the decision-making process which led to the 218 service closing”.

Humza Yousaf denied this and claimed that the decision to close 218 was taken by SNP-run Glasgow City Council.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross said: “Nicola Sturgeon cut funding for drug treatment in 2015 and deaths rose. This year, Humza Yousaf has cut the treatment budget in real terms.

“The SNP promised to create hundreds of new rehab beds. They’ve only managed just over 30.

“The addiction crisis in this country is out of control.

“Since the SNP came to power, drug deaths have doubled. They are the worst in Europe.

“And new figures show deaths are increasing again.

“Scotland’s shame has not gone away.

“Humza Yousaf wants to dodge responsibility. He’s using the same excuses as Nicola Sturgeon and he’s making all the same mistakes as she did.

“Nicola Sturgeon admitted she took her eye off the ball. Humza Yousaf has done exactly the same."