§ Mr. Wareing
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions he has had with organisations in the Liverpool area in respect of ways of combating drug problems; what proposals he has put forward for central Government assistance; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Jack
A drugs prevention team was set up in Liverpool in December 1990 under the Home Office drugs530W prevention initiative and continues to work with the local community in finding effective ways of preventing the spread of drug misuse.
In May 1992 I visited the team to launch the educational video which they have produced in conjunction with the "Brookside" television company. During European Drug Prevention Week in November I visited again, to talk to local business people about drugs prevention in the workplace, to open the drugs prevention fayre at the Everyman theatre, and to speak to local drugs prevention workers.
The Home Office provides £75,000 a year to the team to spend on grant aid to local agencies and groups engaged in drugs prevention work and £10,500 to spend on prevention publicity. These budgets have been supplemented considerably by private donations and sponsorship and some 60 projects have been undertaken to date. We also provided an extra £15,000 for specific drugs projects in the Liverpool area during European Drug Prevention Week.
A steering committee of representatives from organisations in the local community, including statutory and voluntary drugs services, the local authority, police and the chamber of commerce, supervise the work of the team. I announced recently that the life of the team, like the other teams set up under the drug prevention initiative, would be extended to March 1995.