An LGA paper published as part of Local Democracy Week says the structure of Drug Action Teams is holding back progress because they lack 'executive teeth'.
The paper says: 'There is little ultimate sanction should a constituent partner, or indeed the whole team, not perform. In the worst, progress can only be made at the pace of the slowest.'
To be truly effective, the paper says the teams must connect with other initiatives such as crime and disorder partnerships, youth offending teams and Welfare to Work. They 'have suffered in the past from being isolated from other policy areas and need to be 'stitched in' to these overall strategies', the paper says.
The LGA adds that if the government gave councils the lead responsibility for drugs, it would have a significant impact. Members can exert pressure on agencies and reflect local concerns in a way 'not always open to officers'.