Scotland county Valley Death reports recommendations Scotland county Valley

Stirling drug death toll almost halves in 2021 - but campaigners say more work to be done

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A new report has revealed a sharp drop in the number of drug deaths in Stirling in 2021 - but campaigners are urging caution over the issue.The data from the National Records of Scotland, released on Friday, showed a small drop in the number of drug-related fatalities across Scotland for the first time since 2013.In Stirling, the drug death total has almost halved in a year from 31 in 2020 to 16 in 2021, with a general rate of 21.2 per 100,000 of population.The decrease nationally is also reflected in the figures in the region, with the 69 drug deaths in Forth Valley in 2021 a fall from the 2020 figure of 77.However, one local councillor and campaigner believes there is still more to be done in reducing the drug death toll in the city further.Bannockburn representative Alasdair Macpherson said: “The drop in deaths in Stirling is welcome news, however any claims that things are getting in any way better is not echoed by those I speak to.“Of the 16 who died in Stirling last year, I got to know at least half of them and know how their deaths has impacted their families.

A lot of these people died because the face-to-face support from various bodies who are paid millions in public money was withdrawn because of Covid.“I have been told that some of these groups are still not back to 100 per cent face-to-face support.“Families feel that their loved ones deaths were avoidable.

Numerous agencies have been set up to support people with addictions, but I have been told on several occasions that they people who run them are difficult to contact, aloof and completely lack compassion and understanding.“Nationally we see rolling out more reports, recommendations, committees and working groups that are well trodden are not sufficient

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