Six Key Messages (2003)
- It is estimated that there are between 250,000 and 350,000 children of problem drug users in the UK – about one for every problem drug user. This represents about 2 – 3% of children under 16 years old in the UK.
- Parental problem drug use can and does cause serious harm to children at every age from conception to adulthood.
- Reducing the harm to children from parental drug use should become a main objective of policy and practice.
- Effective treatment of the parent can have major benefits for the child.
- By working together, services can take many practical steps to protect and improve the health and well-being of affected children.
- The number of affected children is only likely to decrease when the number of drug users decreases.