Ex-heroin addict wants to end cycle of methadone dependency and create recovery communities

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Drug mortality rates revealed that 73 Dundonians died from drug abuse in 2019 making it the most dangerous drugs city in Europe.

A tale of two cities is playing out in Dundee in 2019.

The opening of the V&A design museum brought the glare of TV cameras from around the world.

At the same time, drug mortality rates revealed that 73 Dundonians died from drug abuse, making it the most dangerous drugs city in Europe.

The death rate is more than double the Scotland average.

The stark contrast is not lost on former heroin addict Sharon Brand, 41, who now dedicates her life to supporting others fighting back from addiction and facing the real prospect of death if they continue on the same path they are currently on.

Sharon believes the peer support she offers through the Recovery Dundee group – using those who have lived through drug dependencies – is the single most important resource that should be streamed through all of Scotland’s drugs responses.

Sharon claims every recovering heroin addict should have an individualised recovery plan that combines Opiate Replacement Therapy with independent peer support. She backs grandmother Sylvia Fox, whose methadone battle we reported on yesterday. Sharon says no one should be considered an NHS success if they have been on methadone for years.

Stepping out on my recovery journey in August 2016, I never imagined my life would be consumed with the desire and passion to create the first independent recovery community in Scotland.

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