Daily news -11th April 2017

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UK news

Newsnight 10th April 2017 - BBC iPlayer

Discussion on Spice featureing Harry Shapiro of DrugWise. Watch from 21.35mins | BBC, UK

Drugs and the homeless - BBC radio iPlayer

Chelsea speaks to a local homeless charity about the problem of the drug spice | BBC, UK

'"It was the worst 20 minutes of my life" - the reality of Spice

An increase in anti-social behaviour fuelled by the former so called legal-high 'Spice' has prompted a police crackdown in Manchester. The drug is said to leave users in a "zombie-like" state. Two homeless people in the city have told us what it's like to take the drug | BBC, UK

Government must tackle Spice drug problem before it gets any worse, police and council chiefs warn

The Spice drug problem blighting parts of the UK cannot be allowed to get any worse, a police chief has said, as he warned that the rise of 'zombies' using the substance is putting too much pressure on public services | Telegraph, UK

Controlling alcohol-related crime and disorder

How can governments curb excessive drinking and related disorder in the
night time economy without becoming vulnerable to the accusation of
‘nanny-state killjoy’? Two approaches are on the table in this hot
topic: minimum unit pricing and licensing | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

New chemical composition of 'poppers' linked to retinal damage

The new chemical composition of the legal high 'poppers' is linked to retinal damage at the back of the eye, finds a small study published online in the British Journal of Ophthalmology | Medical Xpress, UK

Alcohol dependence: insights into prevalence, children & intention to change

New research has been released assessing the prevalence of alcohol dependence in England, including the first estimates of dependence by local area. The analysis also explores the number of children likely to be living with dependent adults and the proportion of dependent drinkers wishing to reduce their alcohol use | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

People on ecstasy feel loved-up because MDMA boosts trust

Ecstasy makes you feel like everyone’s your friend. Now an experiment in which people played a trust game after taking the drug is helping to explain why | New Scientist, UK

Strip 'violent wine' monks of charity status, say secularists

Monks who make Buckfast tonic wine linked to violent crime in Scotland should be stripped of charitable status, say campaigners | BBC, UK

BrewDog toasts £213m US private equity investment

BrewDog, the Aberdeenshire-based craft brewer, is now worth more than £1bn after selling a stake to a US private equity firm | BBC, UK

NHS Scotland to fund 'game-changer' Prep HIV drug

A "game-changing" drug which dramatically reduces the chances of being infected with HIV is to be made available on the NHS in Scotland | BBC, UK


International news

Canadian province gambles future on marijuana's 'extreme growth potential'

New Brunswick invests in cannabis industry, which could be worth billions once legalised, with hopes to revive its declining economy and aging population | Guardian, UK

Balaclava-clad SWAT team mocked online over video warning to 'poison pushers' - video

Florida sheriff tells drug dealers 'We are coming for you—run' | Independent, UK

Concerns vaping may act as ‘gateway’ to tobacco cigarettes

The State’s health services watchdog is worried that people who have never smoked will start using e-cigarettes as they become more socially acceptable | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Colleges can get free doses of naloxone for students overdosing on heroin and other opioids

Colleges will be able to get several free doses of a drug that can reverse opioid overdoses, a sign of the widening impact of the deadly epidemic and increased efforts to combat it | Washington Post, USA

Scott County sees no new HIV cases in 3 straight months, sparking renewal of needle exchange

At a time when the area is seeing a major decrease in new HIV cases, the Scott County Needle Exchange Program has been approved for another year | WDRB, USA

Legal Marijuana Ends at Airport Security, Even if It’s Rarely Stopped

Because federal law takes precedence, flying in possession is barred. Enforcement, however, is not a priority for screeners | NYTimes, USA

Joints by Snoop Dogg or white label cannabis? Government ponders ad restrictions for pot

The elegant white box shipped from the Tweed Inc. medical marijuana plant in Smiths Falls is stamped with a gold cannabis leaf that signals the dried bud inside is endorsed by Snoop Dogg himself | Ottawa Sun, Canada

Shalom House says hardline approach at Australia's 'strictest' drug rehab centre delivers results

When you step inside Shalom House as a new resident, be prepared to not only hand over your cigarettes, phone and car keys, but your entire life | abc.net.au, Australia

Marijuana legalisation: Perth-based MGC Pharmaceuticals produces first cannabinoid extracts, while South Australia resident faces cannabis oil charges

Perth-based MGC Pharmaceuticals have reportedly produced their first cannabinoid extracts at the company’s new European extraction facility. The company told on Monday that it has successfully produced the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis, cannabinoid, at its Slovenia extraction facility | IBTimes, Australia

E-cigarette ban has advocates fuming

A decision by Australia’s drug regulator to maintain a ban on e-cigarettes has created a curious alliance between harm minimisation advocates and big tobacco companies | ABC.net, Australia

Drug law reform needed to end Māori over-incarceration, says Drug Foundation

The government must urgently act to end the persistent failure by the criminal justice system to address disproportionate Māori reoffending rates, said the New Zealand Drug Foundation in response to a Waitangi Tribunal report, Tū mai te rangi | NZ Drug Foundation, New Zealand

An Affordable Cure For Hep C: the New Zealand Medical Profession's Little Secret

An underground buyer’s club has sprung up to meet demand for unfunded Hep C drugs in New Zealand. It’s legal, so why are so many doctors not telling their patients about accessing potentially life-saving treatment? | VICE, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Nicotine in the news

As a student, Professor Ibrahim Al-Marashi wrote a thesis entitled Iraq: Its Infrastructure of Concealment, Deception and Intimidation.  As revealed by the Chilcot Inquiry into the Iraq war, the thesis found its way into the UK Foreign Office where it was not only plagiarised but also altered, as the British government and intelligence establishment sought to strengthen the uncertain evidence about Saddam Hussein's efforts to develop weapons of mass destruction | NSP Blog, UK

Maybe social media really is the best way to fight this futile war on drugs

From Manchester to Florida, these days there's only one way to get our attention about the dangers of substance abuse – whatever privacy issues it raises | Independent Voices, UK

Philippines committed to human rights

In response to your article (Dismay over Liam Fox’s claim of shared values with Duterte’s brutal regime, 4 April), like the UK, the Philippines is a strong democracy with a very active and engaged civil society keen on participative and transparent governance | Guardian letters, UK

Redefining the recovery community

Over the past half-century, the meaning of “the recovery community” has undergone considerable changes | William White Papres, USA

Why I am troubled by Sydney's latest pop-up restaurant

Glamorising narco culture, on screen and in a pop-up chicken shop, is plain wrong | Age comment, Australia