The government has been urged to improve the status and training
of staff who work with drug misusers in a bid to tackle recruitment
and retention problems.
A report by social care charity Turning Point, released this
week, calls for better rewards, personal development and career
progression for staff, and improved public standing for the
It estimates there is a shortfall of at least 3,000 staff with
specialist knowledge in the management of drug misusers. Shortfalls
are greatest among those working with young people, women,
families, people with mental health problems and ethnic minorities,
The report stresses the need for a “shared level of skills
and knowledge across all professions and mainstream agencies that
come into contact and work with drug misusers”. Staff should
be aware of what services exist locally, referral pathways, and
joint working, it adds.
The report was written in consultation with 12 other
organisations including rehabilitation agency Nacro, the National
Housing Federation, the Royal College of General Practitioners and
the Association of Directors of Social Services.