MPs back charity’s work on drug-use by youngsters

Ben Bradley and Mansfield businessman Andre Camilleri, a trustee of the charity, with the pledge signed by MPs.
Ben Bradley and Mansfield businessman Andre Camilleri, a trustee of the charity, with the pledge signed by MPs.

Alarming new figures on drinking, smoking and drug-use among schoolchildren have prompted MPs to back the work of a charity that has its origins in Mansfield.

Life Skills Education, which started its work in the town 25 years ago, says its aim to inform and help young people from an early age is now more relevant than ever.

And both Ben Bradley, MP for Mansfield, and Mark Spencer, MP for Sherwood, have promised to encourage teachers to get in touch with the charity to see how its programme can be delivered in local schools.

Mr Bradley invited representatives of Life Skills Education to the House Of Commons to chat to MPs. It coincided with the release of NHS statistics revealing that drug-use among 11-to-15-year-olds has risen from 15 per cent to 24 per cent. But while six in ten pupils said they had had a lesson in school about drugs or alcohol, 40 per cent felt not enough information had been provided.

The charity’s boss, Pete Moyes, said: “While we know teachers are under a lot of pressure, young people require the skills to make healthier choices. Early-intervention education is needed to change behaviours.”

BOTH Mr Bradley and Mr Spencer were so impressed by the Nottingham-based Life Skills Education charity at the Commons that they signed a pledge which underpins its philosophy.

The pledge reads: “Every child deserves the right to know how to deal with risks, know the consequences and be able to make an imformed decision”.

The MPs said: “It was great to see the good work that Life Skills Education is delivering to thousands of young people every year. By signing the pledge, we are helping to raise awareness of its early-intervention programmes on drugs and alcohol.”