DELEGATES at this year’s SNP conference could be asked to offer support for safer drug consumption facilities to be introduced in Glasgow.

Earlier this year, Lord Advocate James Wolffe said the UK Government would be required to amend the Misuse of Drugs Act before a consumption room could be given the go-ahead in Glasgow.

But there is no political will from Downing Street for the facilities.

Last month, the Prime Minister told Glasgow Central MP, Alison Thewliss that there was “no legal framework for the provision of drug consumption rooms in the UK” and “no plans to introduce them”.

“A range of offences is likely to be committed in the operation of drug consumption rooms. It is for local police forces to enforce the law in such circumstances and we would expect them to do so, but our approach on drugs remains very clear: we must prevent drug use in our communities and support people dependent on drugs through treatment and recovery.”

Glasgow has an estimated 13,600 problem drug users, and, according to the National Aids Trust, there is currently an “ongoing and extensive” outbreak of HIV among those who inject drugs in the region.

The charity claims that efforts to curtail the outbreak have been “hindered” by a number of issues but in particular the Government’s refusal to open the drug facility.

There were 934 drug-related deaths in Scotland last year, up from 867 the year before.

If the motion, which is being put forward by Thewlis and Glasgow City Council group, is selected, delegates will be asked to “note the tragically high level of drug-related deaths in Scotland, driven by increasing mortality rates among older drug users”.

They will also be asked to recognise that a “safer drug consumption facility can only become operational if an exemption from the Misuse of Drugs Act is provided to the Health and Social Care Partnership and calls on the Home Office to agree to enable Glasgow to pilot a safe consumption facility either by directly providing a legal exemption or by devolving the powers which are necessary to enable the Scottish Government to do so”.

The UK Government’s refusal to budge on the change in law has come despite the UK Government’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs previously reporting that similar safe injecting rooms in Canada and Australia have been successful in helping to cut fatalities from overdoses.