Home » Themes & Tools » Parental Substance Abuse

Parental Substance Abuse

Parental substance misuse is a key factor in local and national serious case reviews. Research shows it often coexists with issues of domestic abuse and poor mental health, and impacts on parents ability to keep their children safe.  Local findings highlight the challenges of adult and children’s services working together effectively to safeguard children where parents are using substances.


The OSCB endorses the following local resources for practitioners:

The OSCB has produced the following learning for practitioners

Useful Links and Publications on Parental Substance Misuse

Local service for children affected by their/someone else’s substance misuse

The Aquarius offers support to young people aged 11 – 19 (up to 25 for those with complex needs) in Oxfordshire who are suffering neglect because of parental or guardian substance misuse, or who are affected by current or historical substance misuse within the family.  Services on offer include play therapy, and support for young people at risk of developing a substance misuse problem. Aquarius workers are based in Oxfordshire’s Children and Family Centres.

Information from the DAAT

The Oxfordshire Drug and Alcohol Action Team was historically a provider of drug and alcohol services in Oxfordshire. Their website should be treated with caution as it is no longer maintained. Below are links to short films commissioned by the DAAT showing the dangers of drink and drugs:

These are aimed at children and young people, and young adults

The Family Workbook

Developed by the DAAT, the Family Workbook supports parents to talk with their child about their drug or alcohol problem, helps them understand the situation, and work through their feelings and includes practical planning tools.