A two-year-old boy has died after drinking methadone at his home which he shared with his parents who use the drug, it emerged at the weekend.
Derek Doran died at the family home in Elphinstone, East Lothian, last December but Lothian and Borders police only received a toxicology report confirming the heroin substitute as the cause of his death last week.
Derek’s mother Lisa Dodds and his father, also called Derek Doran, are both methadone users.
The police have not confirmed that it was Derek’s parents’ drugs that were responsible for his death. A spokesperson said they were investigating the case.
Scottish first minister Jack McConnell has called for a review of protection procedures for children whose parents misuse drugs. McConnell made the remarks in a Holylrood debate last month on children and drug misuse prompted by the case of an 11-year-old Glasgow girl who became ill after taking heroin.
McConnell said: “The needs of the children must come first and be considered when they are at a very young age. There should be a review of how our social services and others respond to ensure that youngsters have the best possible chance in life.”
McConnell said that officials had indicated to him that social workers placed too much emphasis on keeping families together rather than safeguarding children.
“We know that youngsters who are in the homes of drug-addicted parents are more likely to get involved in drugs,” he said.