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Drug-Related Crimes

Volume 404: debated on Monday 28 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans he has to ensure effective treatment for offenders whose crimes are drug-related. [109296]

Research shows that appropriate treatment can reduce both drug use and offending. To get more offenders into treatment, the Government is developing a range of interventions at every appropriate stage in the criminal justice system, which provides opportunities to identify and engage with drug misusing offenders and helps them gain access to appropriate treatment.This programme will build on and expand existing interventions such as the Drug Treatment Testing Order (DTTO), a community sentence which has been available to courts in England and Wales since October 2000 following successful piloting in three areas, and arrest referral schemes. It will also introduce drug testing, initially into the 30 Basic Command Units (BCUs) with the highest levels of acquisitive crime, and develop throughcare and aftercare arrangements aimed at case managing offenders.At the same time, we are expanding our treatment provision to make it more accessible to all that need it, when they need it, which is essential to the success of the Government's National Drug Strategy as a whole. The Pooled Treatment Budget funding will increase from £191 million in 2002–03 to £236 million in 2003–04 rising to £299 million in 2005–06.The main treatment target is to increase the participation of problem drug users in drug treatment programmes by 55 per cent. by 2004 and by 100 per cent. by 2008, and to increase the proportion of users successfully sustaining or completing treatment programmes year on year.