Drugs Charities Call Upon Party Leaders to 'Act Now' Against Legal Highs

Jul 22, 2014, 04:27 ET from Angelus Foundation

LONDON, July 22, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

Legal highs awareness charity, Angelus, and Northamptonshire-based charity, Solve It called upon leaders of all parties to act now on the dangers posed by legal highs. Their joint report "Legal Highs: An Action Plan for Change" published today sets out how Departments should be co-ordinating efforts on education, prevention and information sharing.

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The publication of the report follows the national interactive conference on 26 June where agencies and charities established ways of developing collaborative responses to the issues of legal highs. Many of the actions demanded were for Government to take a leading and more proactive role in order to ensure young people were safeguarded from the harms presented by legal highs.

The founder of Angelus, Maryon Stewart, said, "We have taken great heart in the response from the conference - the report is testament to an overwhelming desire for public sector and charities alike to address the impending disaster from legal highs. However, equally it begs the question why Government Departments are not taking the lead they should. Most of the time, it is not about finding more resources, simply recognising the problem and being prepared to impact on it. The time to act is now."

Kevin Shapland, Chair of Trustees for Solve It said, "This report is an important statement to party leaders of all political persuasion that we are at severe risk of being left behind in this battle against legal highs. These delegates have a wealth of experience in addressing the harms from drugs and they also realise new thinking is needed."

Notes to editors:

1) Maryon Stewart lost her daughter to GBL and established the Angelus Foundation. It is the only drugs charity dedicated to combating legal highs and club drugs and has previously launched a national campaign including the website http://www.whynotfindout.org. There is also a site for families http://www.angelusfoundation.com.

2) Solve It was first established in 1989 to provide a service dedicated to the prevention of Volatile Substance Abuse (VSA), the original 'legal highs'.  It now provides a service to young people, adults, professionals and organisations that promotes understanding, awareness and education of the consequences of 'legal highs', including volatile substances and new psychoactive substances.

The charity works towards the prevention of related deaths, illness, accidents, crime and the impact such abuse has on the family and community, enabling a safer and healthier environment.

Contact +44-(0)1536-414690; E-mail: info@solveitonline.co.uk


3) The national conference brought together delegates from a range of disciplines in order to discuss and share insights from the various approaches that are being adopted to tackle the issues raised by 'legal highs'.

Report is available here:


If you wish to interview Maryon Stewart, please contact:
Vicky Emmett at the Angelus Foundation on
T: +44-(0)203-700-7185
E: Vickyemmett@angelusfoundation.com

SOURCE Angelus Foundation