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Substance misusing parents

Substance Misusing Parents/Carers/Individuals living with Children

Harrow Substance Misuse Service and the LSCB work together to safeguard and promote the welfare of children

Who is at risk?

Parental or carer drug and/or alcohol use can reduce the capacity for effective parenting. Children are more likely to develop behavioural problems, experience low educational attainment and are vulnerable to developing substance misuse problems themselves. Some children health or development may be impaired to the extent that they are suffering or likely to suffer significant harm.

From the parent or carers perspective, the outcome of their treatment is likely to be affected (positively or negatively) by the demands placed on them by caring for their children. They may also fail to seek appropriate support if they fear that admitting their drug or alcohol problem may lead to them losing the children.

Where problematic substance use is in evidence there may be a range of additional problematic behaviour such as domestic violence.

Westminster Drug Project (WDP) Deliver the Harrow Adult Substance Misuse Service which includes a Hidden Harm Service that focuses on reducing risks for children, support access to adult treatment and jointly work with Children and Family services:

  • identify and support parents/carers/individuals living with children who are involved in problematic drug and/or alcohol misuse and to minimise the impact of this substance misuse on their children.


  • work alongside both childrens and adult teams to identify and engage with parents/carers/individuals living with children living in Harrow who are involved in problematic drug and/or alcohol misuse.


  • focus on parents/carers/individuals living with children known to the recovery services, those who have disengaged and those with an identified substance misuse need who are not yet known to services.


  • work in multi-agency settings alongside other Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) partners within appropriate family and young peoples agencies.


  • provide support to parents/carers/individuals living with children to motivate and facilitate their engagement in treatment.


  • work in collaboration with social workers and other professionals, to manage the assessment of risk posed by substance misuse on children and young people within the identified families, and operate as part of the wider team around the family.


  • work alongside childrens social care teams and adult substance misuse services to increase the confidence and competence of workers in responding to hidden harm.


  • provide professional consultation to the wider workforce, and strengthen referral and care pathways between the recovery service, Children and Family Services and other key partners.


How to contact the service You can talk with one of the duty team practitioners by visiting WDP in person or contacting them by telephone:


WDP Safeguarding Handbook

Addendum to WDP Safeguarding Handbook


Opening times

The opening times for the Centre are shown in the table below. The assessment clinic provides a drop in service at all times, except for Thursdays.

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Centre opening times 10am-5pm 10am-7.30pm 10am-5pm 10am-7.30pm 10am-5pm
Assessment clinic opening times 12pm-2pm 11am-2pm 12pm-2pm (women only) 4.30pm-6.30pm (by appointment only) 12pm-2pm


At the first appointment:  During the first appointment you will be able to talk with one of the duty team practitioners who will help you decide which service best meets your needs. You will then work with the team to create a care plan which will be reviewed regularly.

Referrals:  Referrals can be self-referral or via any professional such as a G.P, housing support worker, social worker or nurse.

Harrow Recovery Centre

Engagement & Treatment Hub:

333a Station Road


HA1 2 AA

Telephone: 0208 515 7830

ADT Healthcare offers a free helpline and walk-in clinic for people suffering with drug and alcohol addiction issues. You can contact ADT Healthcare free on 0800 088 66 86.