Star Opinion: Closure is a blow to all

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They say you shouldn’t judge a person until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.

You’d need to follow in Christine Hatton’s footsteps for at least a decade until you could possibly begin to understand her heartbreaking situation.

This devoted mum and qualified nurse tried for more than 10 years to get her much-loved son, Sam, off heroin. And she was as hands on as you can get, carrying out detoxes at home on her days off from her job at the substance misuse unit in Kendray Hospital.

There are people out there who assume drug addicts only come from one sort of background. The Hatton family is proof that drug and alcohol addiction can and does happen to anybody in our community.

This is why it is particularly devastating that the unit where Christine works is now set to close. Drug and alcohol addicts from every background and every corner of South Yorkshire and beyond will be without a hugely valuable resource.

It is now more important than ever that young people are educated about the dangers of dabbling in drugs.

If there were no addicts, the unit would have no patients – and then it would be closing for all the right reasons.

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