Rise in drug and alcohol related reports

The NSPCC has reported a 16 per cent rise in reports to its helpline concerning substance abuse near children.

According to the children’s charity, the average of one contact every hour expressing concerns on either drugs or alcohol has seen over 20,000 referrals made to external agencies - including police and children’s services.

The publication of the figures marks the beginning of Children of Alcoholics Week, which aims to raise awareness of the problems and suffering associated with parental alcohol problems.

Peter Wanless, NSPCC chief executive said: “Drug and alcohol abuse can have hugely damaging affects around children and it’s clearly troubling to see a rise over time in reports of this problem to our helpline.

"Substance misuse all too often leads to the neglect or abuse of a child and it’s absolutely crucial that we do all we can to stop that. The NSPCC provides services directly to families suffering from these problems to help them overcome them and provide their children with a safe and secure upbringing. But everyone has a duty to look out for potential signs of distress and the NSPCC’s helpline is there to provide help and support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year."

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