Daily news - 10th July 2018

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UK news

Alfie Dingley's medical cannabis let through UK border

The mother of a boy with epilepsy has legally brought medicinal cannabis oil through the UK border after being given a special licence by the government | BBC, UK

Sophia Gibson: Cannabis oil wait girl admitted to hospital

A seven-year-old girl who is waiting to hear if she can be treated with medicinal cannabis oil has been admitted to intensive care | BBC, UK

UK government should abandon ‘just say no’ drug policy amid record fatal overdoses, say Labour MPs

'This government’s approach is lining the pockets of organised criminals while forcing taxpayers to live with the costs associated with drug abuse' | Independent, UK

Government will not 'stand in the way' of drug testing at festivals, says Home Office

‘Clarity from the government is a win, but we can go even further. Let’s make it a requirement that festivals and, if possible, nightclubs, have to ensure there is drug safety testing available’ | Independent, UK

Fears of future strain on NHS as councils slash health programmes

Anti-drug and stop-smoking programmes are being cut despite May’s promise of £20bn extra on health | Observer, UK

Alcoholic Drinks: Rehabilitation

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what the total local authority expenditure on alcohol treatment services in England was in (a) 2014, (b) 2015, (c) 2016 and (d) 2017; and if he will publish that same information by region | They work for you, UK

Change Grow Live collaborates with The Loop to reduce drug-related harm

Innovative and potentially life-saving drug testing at festivals and nightclubs could soon be extended to city centres after a crowd-funding campaign was significantly boosted by Change Grow Live | CGL, UK

Why psychedelics could be the new class of antidepressant

Growing evidence suggests that hallucinogenic drugs can help quell depression. Following the government’s review of medicinal cannabis last month, Jack Dutton asks whether we are at a turning point in drug policy | Independent, UK

Insight Westminster Launch

We are excited to announce the official opening of Insight Westminster, our new young people’s drug and alcohol service | Blenheim, UK

Tackling gambling related harm – a whole council approach

Harmful gambling is increasingly cited as a public health issue which requires a broad response; that is to say, traditional approaches that focus on single interventions do not tend to work at a population level | LGA, UK

Ambulances as busy as New Year’s Eve after England World Cup match

The Association of Ambulance Chief Executives said many ambulance services across the country received as many calls as they usually do on December 31 – traditionally the busiest night of the year for paramedics | ITV, UK

Lorry driver jailed for smuggling £1.5m of cocaine into Harwich

A Dutch national caught smuggling £1.5m worth of cocaine into the UK has been jailed for 10 years | BBC, UK

Road ban for 91-year-old drink-driver in Colchester

A 91-year-old woman has pleaded guilty to drink-driving after crashing her Audi into bollards and a lamppost | BBC, UK


International news

Changing patterns of first e-cigarette flavor used and current flavors used by 20,836 adult frequent e-cigarette users in the USA

Understanding the role that flavors play in the population’s use of e-cigarettes and the impact that flavored e-cigarette products have on the population’s use of more harmful tobacco products, like conventional cigarettes, has been identified by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a public health research priority | BMC, UK

Toronto: chief medical officer calls for decriminalisation of all drugs

City’s top public health official urges government to do away with legal penalties to lower opioid-related deaths and overdoses | Guardian, UK

Revealed: Irish drug users turning to Facebook to order drugs such as ecstasy and cannabis

Drug dealers are using social media giant Facebook to sell prescription drugs including painkillers, opioids and powerful sedatives to Irish customers | Independent, Ireland

North Dublin regional drug & alcohol task force 2016 annual report to drugs programme unit (PDF)

2016 began with renewed energy for the North Dublin Regional Drug & Alcohol Task Force with a series of changes to further enhance our Frontline Service provision | North Dublin regional drug & alcohol task force, Ireland

With More Opioid Use, People Are More Likely To Get Caught Up In The Justice System

People addicted to prescription opioids or heroin are far more likely to have run-ins with the law than those who don't use opioids, according to a study published Friday in JAMA Network Open | npr, USA

How Cannabis Manufacturers Tell a Story Through Their Sophisticated Packaging

A look into the world of cannabis packaging | Adweek, USA

Tech savvy drug users are relying on Apple Watch and Fitbit to keep them safe during cocaine binges

Apple and Fitbit both like to tout the potential health benefits of their wearable devices. For a few hundred bucks, users get access to a number of sensors that chart and track everything from blood pressure to caloric intake | TNW, USA

STASH, Vol.14(7) – Does stress affect drug use in rural communities?

As drug overdose deaths in the United States continue to rise, researchers are working to gain a better understanding of the factors that affect drug use. This is an especially critical question in rural communities, who face a severe shortage of mental health professionals | BASIS, USA

Toronto's public health board recommends decriminalization of all drugs

Toronto's public health board on Monday recommended that the government decriminalize all drugs for personal use in an effort to treat drug addiction as a health problem | UPI, Canada

Regular teen drinking leads to alcohol problems in adulthood

Adolescents who drink every week before the age of 17 are two to three times more likely to binge drink, drink drive, and be dependent on alcohol as adults compared with peers who don’t drink | MCRI, Australia

Mandatory drug treatment "punitive": Children's Commissioner

South Australia’s Commissioner for Children and Young People has labelled the Liberal Government’s plan to introduce mandatory drug treatment for children as a “punitive” approach that breaches young people’s rights | Indaily, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Over 1,500 assaults on paramedics a year – but new law won’t stop the violence

Paramedics face violence on a daily basis so a new law which will bring in tougher sentences for those who attack emergency workers when they are on duty is most welcome | Conversation, UK

Alcohol’s health benefits hard to prove, but harms are easy to document

Alcohol is the most widely used drug in the world, including in the United State | Conversation, USA

How cannabis became a “drug” in South Africa

On 31 March last year, the Western Cape High Court of South Africa, in the case of Garreth Prince, ruled as constitutional the personal use of cannabis by an adult in a private dwelling, along with the possession, purchase or cultivation associated with such use | Points blog, USA

Children are one of the 'War on Drugs' casualties

Like so many Americans, I’ve watched in horror as immigrant children have been separated from their parents due to the Trump administration’s zero tolerance policy of illegal entry across the border | The Hill opinion, USA

OPINION: Vaping saved my mother

For as long as I could remember, my mother smoked. She started in the 70s when smoking was cool | QT, Australia

Painful Confusion: How most Australia media outlets where duped on a study of “Medical” Cannabis

On the 3rd of July, many major Australian news outlets published articles condemning medical cannabis by suggesting that it has no efficacy in treating chronic non-cancer pain, including: the ABCthe Sydney Morning Herald and news.com.au | AOD MediaWatch, Australia