'Great is the Truth and it will Prevail'
Don't trust quick fix solution
2 February, 2006
SHETLAND drug and alcohol workers have warned islanders to think twice before signing up to rehabilitation programmes offered by Narconon Scotland.
They said support and rehab programmes were available locally and it should not cost =A36,000 to kick the habit, as the organisation suggests.
Narconon has an international network of drug rehab centres, sponsored by the Church of Scientology. There are two in the UK, one in West Linton, Peebleshire, and the other in East Grinstead, West Sussex.
Mike Gallant, of the Community Drugs Team (CDT), said: "It is essential that people take local expert advice before believing everything they hear and read. People having problems controlling their alcohol or drug use often have very different needs, and there's no such thing as a 'quick fix'. This particular programme may be good for some people, though there are many other ways of getting help to help yourself."
Jenna Leask, from the Alcohol and Drug Development Office at NHS Shetland, added that help could be available to pay for detoxification and rehabilitation. She said: "If you contact the Aftercare and Resettlement team on Lerwick 696698 they can assess you with a view to getting funding. They have all the information to help you decide what's right for you, including residential treatment outwith the islands if necessary.
"Shetland Alcohol Support Services (SASS), the CDT and your local NHS health centre can also offer other help, including access to a specialist detox nurse, alternative therapies, practical assistance and counselling."
Mr Gallant added that his main concern was that Narconon might not be quite what they appear to be.
"They're heavily supported by the Church of Scientology, and the BBC TV programme 'Watchdog' did an investigation of them. The results of that are available on the BBC website.
"Of course people may be desperate for help, but I'd urge people to think again if they're believing there's a magic pill out there to fix everything - if anyone knows that's not the case, it's someone with a drug or alcohol problem!"