Harm Reduction & Homelessness at Hit Hot Topics

On Friday we attended HIT Hot Topics, an annual conference held in Liverpool which features the latest harm reduction developments from across the world.

We at HIT believe that a conference focused on harm reduction is more important than ever given the current UK situation in terms of drug related deaths, novel psychoactive drugs, chemsex and a lack of political will to promote evidence-based approaches to these issues.

The conference featured 13 prominent speakers exploring a variety of topics – including drug-related deaths in the UK, novel psychoactive drugs, IPEDS, chemsex, service user involvement and the political landscape of drugs and alcohol.

We were particularly impressed by two separate talks which made us think how we could further develop services to improve engagement and support with our more difficult to engage clients, including people who sleep rough.

Sue McCutcheon, a nurse from Birmingham’s Homeless Primary Care Team presented a talk on the risks people face when living on the street. Talking about her street engagement role on the Homeless Task Force, she explored the challenges they’ve overcome whilst delivering health care to individuals with multiple needs.

Nanna Gotfredsen, the founder and director of Gadejuristen, The Danish Street Lawyers, presented an exciting talk around their legal outreach with homeless people in Copenhagen and the progressive provision of the world’s largest consumption room.

“It was a great day with lots of learning and some great networking, meeting new and old associates and learning of new research in the pipelines,” reviewed Jane, our Assertive Engagement Manager.

“We made some positive links with other agencies including Harm Reduction International and Gay Men’s Health Collective who we have invited to our Chemsex talk later this month. We came away armed with new contacts, information and a lease of positive motivation.”

Attend our Chemsex Talk

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