Orders of the Day — Drugs (Sentencing and Commission of Inquiry) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:22 am on 25th February 2005.

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Photo of Laura Moffatt Laura Moffatt PPS (Rt Hon Lord Falconer of Thoroton, Secretary of State), Department for Constitutional Affairs 10:22 am, 25th February 2005

I thank the hon. Lady for that interesting intervention. The opposition to those proposals was on the ground of logistics. I hope that it is obvious from what I am saying that I believe that experts in drug abuse and substance misuse should play an integral part in such processes. Indeed, I firmly believe that they have. We have only to look at the amount of money that has gone into community action against drugs. A GP in my constituency takes a great interest in assisting drug users through the Addaction project, which is funded in part by the Home Office and which allows people proper access to care and treatment. Medics should be at the heart of any discussions and decision making on both treatment and sentencing.

This is an important debate. I had my first opportunity to call out the results of a Division earlier, and nobody at all had come through the Aye Lobby. I was upset about that. I know that there are only 14 of us here, but it is important to get these issues on record. Although I take issue with the components of the Bill, it is important that we discuss these matters in detail.