Drug Addicts Not Allowed to Have Children

  1. Powder_Reality
    Baby Ban For Drug Addicts
    by Natalie Walker, (10 Jul 2006) Daily Record United Kingdom
    MSP's Benefits Deal Plan

    DRUG addicts will only get treatment and benefits if they agree not to have children, under a plan put forward by a Labour MSP.

    Duncan McNeill wants addicts to sign a contract agreeing to stop taking drugs before having a family.

    Those who sign up would get benefits, housing and methadone.

    But if they breach the contract by having kids, all that gets taken away.

    The addicts would also face having their children taken into care.

    McNeill said: "Having a family while you are coming off drugs, or on a drug rehabilitation programme, is absolutely mad.

    Advertisement Falk AdSolution

    "We should be using every means possible to dissuade people in this situation from starting a family."

    Backbencher McNeill sparked controversy earlier this year by suggesting addicts should have contraception put in their methadone.

    Yesterday, social workers and drug addict support groups branded his latest proposal "inhumane".

    A Labour party spokesman said the plan was being looked at as part of manifesto preparations ahead of next year's elections.

    He said: "Over the past few years, we've a fairly strong record in tackling drugs and anti-social behaviour.

    "This is one suggestion that will be considered."

    Scottish Tory leader Annabel Goldie backed McNeill's plan.

    But Ruth Stark, of the British Association of Social Workers in Scotland, said: "Are we talking about ethnic cleansing of people who are drug addicts?"

    A spokesman for the Scottish Drugs Forum said the plan "dehumanises people in need of support".

    And Stewart Stevenson, drugs spokesman for the SNP, said: "These proposals are totally unacceptable."

    Share This Article


  1. Powder_Reality
    Here's an editorial from the United Kingdom Herald about the subject.

    Drugs - A Two-Way Deal
    (10 Jul 2006)
    Herald United Kingdom
    Duncan McNeil, the senior Labour MSP, told The Herald in May he had floated the controversial idea of putting contraception in methadone to shape policy on confronting the problem of drug addicts having children. He has succeeded. The Labour Party in Scotland confirmed yesterday that a paper from Mr McNeil setting out proposals to deal with this matter will form part of the process culminating in Labour's manifesto to put before voters ahead of next year's Scottish Parliament elections.

    It is a measure of how far the debate has come in a short period of time that Mr McNeil has gone from being vilified as a Nazi eugenicist to being appreciated as a compassionate, thoughtful man who might perhaps have the answer to a worsening situation that condemns generation after generation to a cycle of life - invariably short and miserable - locked in by drugs. Its impact blights not just victims but Scottish communities, as Mr McNeil, who represents Greenock and Inverclyde, knows all too well. In his constituency there has been a 30% increase in less than 10 years in the number of babies born addicted to heroin. As we know from several high-profile cases, being denied a decent life chance is not the only consequence of being born into a drug-addicted home. A lack of care, or a surfeit of cruelty, can result in the loss of an innocent young life.

    To break these aspects of the cycle, Mr McNeil's paper envisages addicts entering into a social contract with the state. In return for receiving services such as free methadone ( the heroin substitute ), housing and benefits, addicts would agree to regular drug testing, to participation in programmes to wean them off drugs, and to putting off having children until they were "clean". Failure to meet their side of the bargain could result in services and benefits being withdrawn. In addition, children taken into care for their protection could automatically be removed from their parents.

    The familiar oxymoron "tough love" has been deployed to describe the proposals. Mr McNeil views them as setting out the responsibilities addicts should live up to as their side of the bargain with the state. He is right to say this has been a one-sided contract for too long. Can it be made a feasible two-way deal that is effective but sensitive to individual circumstances? Withdrawing treatment from addicts who fail to sign up to an agreement not to have children remains sensitive and contentious. The Scottish Drugs Forum has described the proposals as hardline, punitive and dehumanising.

    Mr McNeil's model is still probably a step too far for Labour to take. But it is not so far removed from existing policy. Jack McConnell, the First Minister, has challenged the assumption that children of drug users should remain with their parents. The Hidden Harm blueprint to help children affected by parental drug abuse says contraceptive services should be part of the package of treatments for addicts. So presumption is heading in Mr McNeil's direction. He has raised awareness of a situation that cannot be allowed to continue, and should be commended for challenging policy-makers to frame measures to prevent future generations falling into the same trap as drug-addicted parents. It will not be easy, but our legislators must rise to the challenge.
  2. vantranist
    im in favor... doing drugs too urself is one thing, but bringing another life into it is another... and im not talking about what the drugs do too the child while in the woom... i mean what it does too them when there 5 or 6 and the parents arnt even around do spend time/take care of him.

    I am one of those kids so i know what it can do.
  3. Alicia
    yeah but what about the responsible users that can still make time for there kids while still doing it, as a rule swia always followed will NOT use substances in front of children ever.

    Swia doesn't want them seeing this behavior. I can see this applies to some people thou.

    If swia ever wanted to have children she would try to curb and wait until they hit there teens when things have settled down, they would never no thou. however if swia ever found they were using swia wouldn't condone it but i'd give them all my knowledge to keep them safe best way i could.

    At the end of the day you mould your children's lives.
  4. enquirewithin
    Will the same apply to alchohlics? Or to heavy smokers?
  5. adzket
    swim has knowen many women coming of h to fall pregant really quickly after doing so even though this has not been threw choise but many will not then have abortions and try there best to stay clean but this dose not always work but stoping benifits and housing and perscriptions for getting pregnant will just make the situwation worse and who takes the blam for starting a family the man or the woman?
  6. Herbal Remedy
    The fact that there is thread about a mother giving her baby methadone already on this forum pretty much backs this up... I understand that there are responsible users in the world, but I also understand that it is not a risk that the government/world wants to take...
  7. StigmataLectron
    Honestly I wouldn't mind the government trying to intervene evolution like this if only they were doing it the right way, such as encouraging those with inheritable illnesses or other devolutionary traits to not have children. But now they go straight to drug addicts.. strange.
  8. Alicia
    because it easy them to pick on drug users due to bullshit law and moral obligation if thats the right word.
  9. Love_N_Bruises
    I'm also in favour...the mother of a close friend of mine was a heroin addict..and it ruined her daughters life...she ewnt through some horrfic times...she's still pretty fucked up now from it. I think if that can be stopped its worth it.... fucking up your own life is your own personal choice...but when your a parent you have respsonbilities =/
  10. Lunar Loops
    Let's sign up for addicts' contracts

    As an add-on to this debate, this interesting and well written piece appeared in The Evening News (Scotland) last Friday (http://news.scotsman.com/opinion.cfm?id=1025382006) :
    Let's sign up for addicts' contracts

    AT first sight, the recent suggestion of contracts for drug addicts looks like blatant political opportunism. These plans, being considered for Labour's Scottish election manifesto, would see addicts sign a contract: in return for benefits, methadone and housing, they would have to agree to end their habit and not have children.
    The argument is that it would help in the battle against drugs by introducing an element of compulsion and also comes in response to tragedies involving children being cared for by drug-addicted parents.
    These are, of course, worthy aims. But a contract with a person suffering from a chaotic illness doesn't make a lot of sense. Would it not drive the problems of drug abuse further underground? Does it not display a complete ignorance of what addiction really is? And how could we enforce such a contract? Would we or could we really deny health or social care because someone failed to keep their end of the bargain? Our ethical framework wouldn't allow it and in a liberal democracy that's absolutely how it should be.
    Yet the concern is real. The number of children being brought up in homes affected by drugs or alcohol dependency is growing. The estimates - and they are only estimates - are that 50,000 children are affected by drugs in the home while double that are affected by alcohol and many by both. How do we ensure a safety net for our children while not overreacting? It's a balancing act of extreme sensitivity and sometimes risk. On the one hand, we know the best place for a child to grow up is their home with their parents, so we must make every effort to support families. Often this is a long process and requires the skills of a number of professions from schools to health, from police to social work. Family support is complex and difficult but it's the route most likely to succeed.
    The alternative, of course, is to remove the child. This seems simple but it has to be the last resort. For a start, the long-term success rate of children in care is not good. An institutional home has never been the best place to bring up a child and foster parents, who do a fantastic job, are hard to find, especially for older children or those with problems.
    Making these life-changing decisions is a tough call for the consequences are far-reaching, not just for the child but for the parents and family. And they are not made lightly. In every area of Scotland there is a Child Protection Committee which is responsible for making sure that the interests of the child always come first. They constantly check on the cases brought before them. It's a serious business and on the ground are the teams of social and health workers who together with the police and other partners make the most difficult decisions on our behalf.
    All too frequently we see the criticisms of these professionals when it goes wrong, but few of us really understand the critical nature of the decisions they make or the dilemmas they face.
    But back to contracts. Despite the unrealistic context of the recent debate, I believe they are exactly what we need. Not as a threat, with the sanction to deprive individuals of care or support, but as a mutually binding agreement as to the way forward, to be upheld by agencies delivering service as well as the person suffering the addiction.
    The contract must follow a comprehensive assessment and for it to work, both parties - agencies and clients - must commit to a plan of action and share a common vision of success against a time scale. That may never mean an individual is completely clear of alcohol or drugs but should always aim at a free-standing and meaningful life in their community.
    Critics will say this won't work without the element of compulsion - without the stick to go with the carrot. But as I've already said, in a liberal democracy we cannot throw people on to the streets or deny them medical treatment. Not only is it not ethical, dealing with the issue in this way would throw up more problems than it solves.
    So realistically this will be a game of snakes and ladders. Many will fail. Some will try time and again and fail. But others will succeed and we must do all we can to give them the best chance of success, not just for them, or for the sake of goodness, but for their families, their neighbourhoods and our community.
    The work of our local alcohol and drugs action team is shortly to be reviewed. Our opportunity has never been greater. With heightened political interest and support it's time to get it right for the next generation. It's said that all you need to ensure success in any business are good people and good systems. We have the people but our systems are still inconsistent. But with the people we have and better systems - including contracts - we can succeed. We simply cannot afford to fail.
    • Tom Wood is chairman of the Action on Alcohol and Drugs Team in Edinburgh
  11. adzket
    also what about alcoholics, smokers ect? even though these are legal there cause many problems for the children involved also what about people on prescription medication?

    i no many people on addictive meds like benzo's ect that take them every day but because they are given them by there doctor and never stop so don't notice the withdrawal so don’t think they are addicts, but they are.

    also an alcoholic brought up swim and this was damaging but you get on with life, the same as anyone should who has a traumatic life. Swim is not saying this is easy, but if you let it ruin your life, then more fool you. Learn from it let it make you stronger and move on.

    also if someone can't cope with kids in there life that’s what we have social services for. admittedly social care is not good in some places, (like America where adoption agency’s are run for profit not the well being of the child) but it has to be better than being with an abusive family who are to busy using drugs or alcohol to care,

    and like i said withdrawing help from people for getting pregnant (mainly the women who are going to suffer hear) is just going to make things worse not help as instead of being on meds and in a stable house they will be on the streets or in a hostel, (if there lucky.) and end up using again as they hit withdrawal from the medication, to feed this drug habit they could either be committing crimes or doing prostitution where they won't always take precautions and then possibly get pregnant again which will add another mouth to feed and more problems,

    and like i said who takes the responsibility the man or the woman. as the man can just leave when he finds out the woman is pregnant, and say well i don’t want the kid its her fault she said she was on the pill. so does he then still carry on getting the help the money the housing and the methadone?

    this is stupid idea and will cause more harm than good i could see dodgy back street abortions starting up again and everything or abandoned babies, as people don't want to lose help just because nature has taken its course and a woman has fallen pregnant. Never mind the human rights issues involved telling people they can’t start a family. Which could be a good resin for a couple getting and staying clean from drugs or alcohol. Also the human rights involved in taking away help for having a baby, or just the fact that people are being told what to do and how to run their lives. am i the only one that sees problems with this?
To make a comment simply sign up and become a member!