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Landmark Right to Recovery Bill to be officially launched

A landmark bill which will ensure that anyone who needs treatment for addiction is able to access appropriate support will be formally introduced at the Scottish Parliament today (Wednesday).

The Right to Addiction Recovery (Scotland) Bill has been brought forward by Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross and written and developed in conjunction with frontline experts, including the CEO of FAVOR UK Annemarie Ward.

The bill received close to 80 per cent support during its consultation phase, including from numerous recovery groups. It also received backing from homeless charity Cyrenians as well as the Scottish Tenants Organisation.

Douglas Ross is urging new SNP First Minister John Swinney to throw the weight of his government behind the bill, so it can become enshrined in law as soon as possible.

He added that drug deaths are Scotland’s “national shame” and that those dealing with addiction do not want to see ministers continuing to dither and delay over taking the action needed to save lives.

Annemarie Ward says the Right to Recovery Bill will give people at “death’s door” the treatment they need and deserve.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross said: “I’m delighted that we have reached the point where this landmark bill can be formally launched.

“The Right to Recovery Bill has been written and developed with frontline experts. It will enshrine in law a right for everyone who needs treatment for addiction to access the most appropriate support for them, including residential rehabilitation.

“The process of a Member’s Bill is a long one and since I first brought forward these plans, far too many lives have been lost and families have continued to lose loved ones to drugs and alcohol across Scotland.

“This crisis is our national shame and our most vulnerable cannot continue to see those in charge fail to take the necessary and decisive action required to save lives.

“As this bill launches today, in the spirit of him saying he wants to work across the chamber, I urge John Swinney to throw his weight behind it, so it can become law as soon as possible.”

FAVOR UK CEO Annemarie Ward said: “Scotland cannot keep failing the most vulnerable people in society. The drug death crisis has hit the poorest communities the hardest.

“Until the Scottish Parliament overhauls the treatment system, more families will be left broken from the pain of losing a loved one.

“The Right to Recovery Bill would help people at death’s door get the treatment they need and deserve.

“I hope every single politician who wants to help vulnerable people in Scotland will engage with the bill and consider supporting it.”