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Council Leader marks International Overdose Awareness Day in Edinburgh

Posted: 31st August 2023

At a meeting of the City of Edinburgh Council today, Council Leader Cammy Day spoke of the importance of International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD).

IOAD takes place on 31 August each year to create better understanding of overdose, reduce the stigma of drug-related deaths, and create change that reduces the harms associated with drug use. Today we look at what an overdose means, how you can prevent it and where to find out more information and support.

This year’s theme is ‘Recognising those who go unseen’ honouring the people whose lives have been altered by overdose. They are the family and friends grieving the loss of a loved one, workers in healthcare and support services extending strength and compassion, or spontaneous first responders who selflessly assume the role of lifesaver.

Council Leader Cammy Day said:

“As we mark International Overdose Awareness Day today, I am conscious of the fact that for some of our residents this will be their first year living with the loss of a loved one through overdose. Each and every death we see is a tragedy and behind all of these are individual stories.

“Unfortunately, this has been a persistent issue for Scotland for a number of years with our national drug death rate continuing to be the highest in the UK and Europe. Too many people are dying prematurely across our country, with events like International Overdose Awareness Day we can raise awareness of the help and support available to those with substance issues. I am clear that the Council will closely support our partners to bring these figures down here in Edinburgh.”

Below is a list of services here in Edinburgh which specialise in dealing with issues around drugs and alcohol:

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