The media, principally the BBC (who made Drug related deaths in Scotland their top story) failed to mention that policy on drugs is a reserved matter, nor that drug related deaths are recorded differently in Scotland than in the rest of the UK - i.e in Scotland, any death where an illegal substance is found in the body during a post mortum is recorded as drug related, even when the cause of death is an accident, murder, or the result of a pre-existing medical condition. This is not the case in the rest of the UK, where only deaths CAUSED by illegal drugs are recorded as drug related.
Nor did the BBC report that in the same set of figures released by the Office for National Statistics it was shown that
Scotland is the only country in the UK to have seen a significant reduction in alcohol-related deaths this century, an official report has revealed. In 2017, Scottish males were twice as likely to die from alcohol-related causes than those in England.But the report said the number had fallen by 21% since 2001. In Northern Ireland it rose by 40% over the same period.
This is significant because the SG DOES have powers in respect of alcohol/alcoholism because this is regarded as a Health Issue and has used these powers successfully to cause/contribute to, a 21% reduction in alcohol related deaths, particularly among younger people.
To those who consider that the SNP is a one trick pony, obsessed with Independence, I can only say that they have many admirable polices (remaining in the EU, making Scotland nuclear free, protecting the environment, creating a more equitable society) which will only come to fruition if/when Scotland is a self governing country, free to make its own decisions based on the needs, hopes and ambitions of its own people.