Brighton Magazine

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Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Saturday 22 June 2013

Silent Voices: Addicts’ Families Take Centre Stage @ City Conference On Drugs & Alcohol Misuse

Drugs misuse in Brighton and Hove is high, and remains a serious problem for the city. Illegal drugs kill between 1,300 and 1,400 people a year in Britain, and wreck thousands of relationships, families, and careers.

With that in mind the Silent Voices conference at the Brighthelm Centre, Brighton, will be a chance for the families and friends of people who use drugs and alcohol to spend some time concentrating on their own needs, meet others in the same position and find out where they can get help and support.

Relatives, friends and carers of people with drug and alcohol issues are invited to the free event which takes place in Brighton on Thursday 25 July.

The event is also open to professionals working in the field. 

Brighton & Hove City Council's deputy director of public health, Peter Wilkinson, said:

"Alcohol and drugs misuse ruins the lives of whole families, not just the substance users."

There will be a keynote speech from Professor Angie Hart from Brighton University, who is an expert on how families can become more resilient, as well as personal stories, workshops and information stalls.


Peter Wilkinson continued: "Families and friends not only care for people misusing drugs and alcohol, but also have a vital role in helping people to recover from their problematic use and to improve their health and wellbeing and participation in society.

"A great deal is expected of families and friends in these situations and events such as this one help support them with the challenges they face." 

A spokeperson for NHS Brighton & Hove added: "We"d rather people didn't take or experiment with drugs, but we"re realistic enough to know that's not going to happen in the short term.

We also know that preaching doesn't work and that telling people not to take drugs isn't the answer. 

"Giving accurate information – so that people know the risks before making their choice - is often the best we can do."

To find out more and to book your place visit

by: Mike Cobley


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