Heroin inquiry will reopen next week

John Mann is celebrating 10 years as an MP (w110610-3b)
John Mann is celebrating 10 years as an MP (w110610-3b)

In 2002 I led an inquiry into the use of heroin in Bassetlaw.

The outcomes from the inquiry changed the way heroin addiction is treated which guided the way to huge reductions in acquisitive crime rates and got rid of the regular spectre of drugs overdose deaths.

Just over ten years on from this the Inquiry is being re-opened to consider not just current heroin abuse in this area but to also look at the issues of alcohol abuse and use of ‘legal highs.’

The inquiry will be meeting over two days on 31st January and 1st February in the Assembly Rooms at Bassetlaw District Council in Worksop between 10am-5pm each day. This will be open to the public and if you have a personal experience either as an addict or perhaps as the relative of an addict or you have been a victim of drugs-related crime and would like give your views at the inquiry please let me know on mannj@parliament.uk or phone 01909 506200. Evidence can be given in strictest confidence.

EMAS has agreed to bring forward new proposals that would expand the number of ambulance stations that they keep open. I made clear to them in a meeting last week that they must bring forward an alternative plan and in the debate I called in Parliament it was confirmed that a new plan is being brought forward.

In my meeting I asked that Worksop, Retford and Gainsborough ambulance stations be guaranteed - that is our bottom line. If the ambulance management and if Mr Milligan wants to re-organise other issues then we need to see the detail, but the revised plan must meet our primary objective and keep our ambulance stations open.

For the first time I could see some clear movement towards what we need. I look forward to further meetings and progress and a positive outcome when this issue is determined in March.

I pointed out in the House of Commons that yet again, as Parliament has come to expect, the level of public involvement from Bassetlaw was much higher than any other constituency. We will need to keep alert to every threat to our public services and I will ensure that every issue is brought to your attention.

In this context, I am examining some worrying statistics from Doncaster Hospital, which seems to be having some problems currently. Serious incidents at Doncaster are well above other hospitals and I want an explanation. I also want to be sure that Bassetlaw remains amongst the best in the country and not allowing standards to slip. We will need our local governors of the hospital to be very active and questioning on this.