HC Deb 23 February 1973 vol 851 cc236-7W
Mr. Rees-Davies

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he is satisfied with the extent to which alcoholics are being treated outside prison; whether he will bring into force Section 91 of the Criminal Justice Act 1967; and if he will make a statement regarding the treatment of habitual drunken offenders following the working party report.

Sir K. Joseph

Outside prison there are now 17 specialist units, providing 369 beds, for the treatment of alcohol dependence and a further six units are planned to provide 104 beds; in addition most psychiatric hospitals or units can treat alcoholics. Two experimental detoxification centres are planned at hospitals in Manchester and Birmingham. Consultations are in progress on proposals to encourage the development of complementary community services. I am satisfied with the development proposed, which will help alcoholics whether or not they are offenders in accordance with the decision taken last year following the report on habitual drunken offenders that services for this group ought normally to be provided as part of a comprehensive service for alcoholics in general. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Home Department has no plans at this stage to bring into force Section 91 of the Criminal Justice Act 1967.