Many people in the UK believe that the country’s drugs policies are all wrong and need changing. It is the opinion of a large number of individuals that criminalising drug addicts is not the right policy and that those who use drugs should be treated instead of punished. However, there are no plans to change the current laws at the moment.
One person who most would assume would be in favour of keeping the current laws in place is Rose Humphries. Two of Rose’s sons, Roland and Jake, died from heroin overdoses, but the retired school governor is fighting for drugs to be legalised.
Rose said, “I still struggle to understand how the family I once thought to be perfect has ended up broken by something so far from all that we knew before. It took two deaths, two funerals, two broken hearts for us to realise that no amount of respectability or love can protect your children from a drug so powerful it will strip them of everything – even their lives.”
Many would expect Rose and her husband to be calling on the Government to tighten the current rules on drugs, but the couple believes that current policies are failing. She added, “Bitter experience has taught us that the current drugs policy doesn’t work. It didn’t protect my children and it won’t protect yours.”
Rose already had two sons, Jonathan and Jake, when she met Jeremy, and the pair went on to have another son, Roland. The family moved to Bromsgrove for a â€˜better startâ€™, as the crime rates there were lower than where they were living in Luton.
Life seemed perfect for a while, and Roseâ€™s eldest son won a place at Cambridge University. However, when Jake and Roland reached the teenage years, they began truanting from school. She said that nothing she or Jeremy said could get through to their sons. When Jake was 18, he was convicted for possession of cannabis and fined. Rose found out about it in her local newspaper and said she was upset that he had kept it from them.
Rose said, â€œWhen I confronted him, he was unrepentant. ‘Everyone I know smokes it,’he insisted. ‘It’s not a big deal.’ Part of me agreed.”
When Roland reached the age of 18, he confided in his mother that he had been using heroin. She said, “We just did our best to suppress our anguish and try to calmly reason with him. But our efforts were rewarded only with the next thundering revelation that Jake was also taking it.”
Rose admits that living with heroin addicts is tough because they constantly lie about what they are doing. She said that every day she worried that one of them would end up in hospital, in trouble with the police, or dead.
Rose said that she could not leave anything lying about because the boys would take any cash they could find. She said she had to have her handbag with her at all times, even in the house. Nonetheless, she admits that feelings of shame that others would think they were bad parents was a big concern for her.
Despite both her sons trying to get help, they both died as a result of their addictions, and now Rose is calling for a change in government policy. She said, “After the funeral, my grief turned to anger. If heroin had been legally regulated, Jake could have gone into a clinic when he’d relapsed and been given a safe dose, along with access to counselling. Instead, a young dad was forced onto the streets to buy it illegally from dealers who don’t care who they sell to or what’s in the drugs they sell.”
She is hoping that drugs can be legally regulated, therefore eliminating the criminals.
- Heroin Killed Two Boys (Mirror.co.uk)