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Drug Deaths In Scarborough Is A "Great Concern"

Drug Deaths In Scarborough Is A "Great Concern"

Published by the Yorkshire Coast Radio News Team at 6:02am 13th August 2018. (Updated at 6:06am 13th August 2018)

The rise in drug related deaths in the Scarborough Borough is of "great concern" to MP Robert Goodwill.

Last week, we told you how the number of deaths due to substance abuse in the borough had risen to its highest rate this century, with 39 people dying between 2015 and 2017.

It works out at an average of 11 deaths per 100,000 people in Scarborough Borough, the seventh worst figure in England and Wales and the worst in North Yorkshire. 

Speaking of the problem in his constituency, Robert said:

"I was out with the paramedics before Christmas, and one of the issues that they raised with me is the number of people in their 40s and 50s who are dying of heart failure because they're taking cocaine over a protracted period.

They're not the sort of people you see crashed out on the street or the people you'd expect.

These are professional people who think it's OK to take cocaine. We cannot even talk about legalising drugs such as cannabis.

We shouldn't be talking about easing up on drugs, we should continue to be tough on drugs because it wrecks lives and it kills people. 

The police have had success in terms of locking up some drug dealers. We've had this phenomenon known as 'county lines' where young people are sent into places like Scarborough to sell drugs from a property."

Police have actively made an effort to tackle the 'county lines' issue, with an increased presence at Scarborough train station, as they believe drug dealers are using the rail network to transport drugs and out of the town. 

This is where drug gangs from cities such as Liverpool, Manchester or Leeds, bring drugs into a smaller town, i.e. Scarborough, and give them to younger people to sell. 

But the North Yorkshire force says it can be difficult to track down the gangs as they move around the county.

Tackling the drugs operation is made more difficult by the fact that North Yorkshire Police has seen a 15% decline in frontline officers in the past 10 years.

Robert continued:

"I think the police are very effective at using intelligence that comes into them. If anyone has any information where drugs are being sold and traded, then let the police know because they do prioritise this.

But the police have had great success over recent years in terms of locking up drug dealers."

In November, Scarborough Borough was highlighted as an 'entrenched social mobility coldspot' meaning those from a disadvantaged background have less of a chance of achieving further education or employment opportunities. 

Scarborough was made one of 12 'Opportunity Areas' after being ranked 295th out of 324 areas surveyed.

It means that more money will be put into the area to go into education and engagement with employers. 

Robert added:

"Employment is at an all time high in this country and there are good opportunities to get into work.

The problem is that when people do become addicted to drugs, they become unemployable. 

So it is important that we fight this drug menace on all fronts. I think young people need to understand that it hey are offered drugs, just say no.

It's as simple as that."

Listen to more of what Robert had to say on the issue here:

 

RELATED STORIES: 

Drug Deaths Soar In Scarborough Borough

Scarborough Police Tackle 'County Lines' Drug Dealers

Scarborough And Whitby MP Talks Social Mobility

North Yorkshire Needs More Than 'Bobbies On The Beat'

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