People across Scotland are being urged to play their part in helping end the stigma of addiction.
An NHS Scotland campaign has launched to help drive home that a drug or alcohol problem is a health condition, with the aim of challenging preconceptions people may hold towards those who are struggling.
People who have a drug and alcohol problem should receive help and support, not judgement, and the campaign highlights how that judgement can act as a barrier to them seeking treatment and help to recover.
A host of people who have lived or living experience of drug or alcohol problems, and their families, have shared their experience in a bid to highlight the negative impact stigma can have on recovery, and why moments of kindness and compassion matter.
Drugs Policy Minister Angela Constance said:
“This is a hard-hitting national campaign which encourages people to see the personal story behind the stereotype."
“Stigma is damaging not only to the individual in terms of their mental health and sense of self-worth but it also discourages them from coming forward to get the help they need. It also impacts on friends and family members.
“We must remember that people with a substance use problem are family members, neighbours, friends and colleagues. By addressing stigma, and the silence and alienation it causes, we make it easier for people to seek help and that is to the benefit of each and every one of us.”
Together we can end the stigma of addiction. Find out more about its impact, and why moments of kindness and compassion matter: www.nhsinform.scot/stigma