Daily news -12th March 2018

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UK news

Alcohol Concern and Alcohol Research UK merger consultation

We need you! AlcoResearchUK and @AlcoholConcern are developing a strategy for their newly merged charity. You can help shape their future direction by completing the short online survey and commenting on their Discussion Board | Alcohol Concern/Alcohol Research UK, UK

The Drugs Wheel

Latest version of the Drugs Wheel (2.0.6) to include legislative changes to 4-F-MPH and MPA (now Class B under the MoDA | Mark Adley, UK

Fake Xanax: The UK's biggest ever dark net drug bust

The 17-year-old sat in his GP’s office in August 2016, explaining to him everything he knew about the drug | BBC, UK

Statistics on Women's Smoking Status at Time of Delivery, England - Quarter 3, 2017-18

This report presents the latest results and trends from the women's smoking status at time of delivery (SATOD) data collection in England. A new interactive tool has been published which allows users to select and view information for individual Clinical Commissioning Groups | NHS Digital, UK

New funds to support families affected by drug and alcohol misuse

A new fund, aimed at families affected by drug and alcohol misuse in Scotland has been launched by the Scottish Government | CentralFM, UK

North Wales hotline to report used drugs syringes

People living in north Wales are being asked to report discarded drugs paraphernalia after a dedicated website and helpline were set up | BBC, UK

What Does a Good Drug Education Programme Look Like?

It is clear from numerous reports that drug education in the UK is not up to scratch. Children are supposed to be learning about drugs and alcohol in a subject called Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE), but currently there is a vague curriculum with lots of freedom given to schools | Volte Face, UK

Licensing Boards (Role in Tackling Alcohol Issues)

To ask the Scottish Government what importance it places on the role of local authority licensing boards in tackling alcohol issues | They work for you, UK

Employers must be clear on vaping policy, says employment law specialist

National No Smoking Day on Wednesday (March 14) will see many smokers switch to vaping in a bid to kick the habit. While smoking in the workplace has been banned for over a decade, vaping falls outside of this legislation | Business MK, UK

Local authority pension funds and investments in the tobacco industry

This briefing is a position statement by Action on Smoking and Health and Fair Pensions which aims to inform stakeholders in local authority pensions, including councillors, pension fund members, local taxpayers and pension fund trustees | ASH, UK

Smoke-free schools resource pack consultation

Survey. ASH Scotland is reviewing our tobacco education resources that are available to secondary schools | ASH Scotland, UK

New Dundee rehab group for females praised

A pioneering Dundee centre that will help rehabilitate female drug and alcohol addicts has been commended by a local politician | Evening Telegraph, UK

Women's centre for recovering alcohol and drug addicts is officially open

Plymouth's first women’s centre supporting recovering alcohol and drug addicts has officially opened | Plymouth Herald, UK

Homeless shunned Cardiff hostels during Storm Emma 'over drug fears'

Some rough sleepers chose to stay out in freezing temperatures during Storm Emma to avoid drug users and dealers at Cardiff's hostels, some homeless people have claimed | BBC, UK

You can now buy cannabis oil-infused spring water from Ocado

Love Hemp Water is the first CBD hemp-infused water in Europe, and Ocado is the first UK supermarket to sell it | Metro, UK

Gin sales hit record high as consumers bought the equivalent of a bottle for every adult in the UK

Gin sales hit a record high at Christmas after consumers bought the equivalent of a bottle for every adult in the UK last year, according to latest figures | Independent, UK

Postman caught delivering cannabis in parcels on his route in drugs smuggling operation 

A postman who was caught delivering cannabis in parcels on his delivery route in £1.2m drugs operation has today been jailed | Telegraph, UK

Michael Caine: ‘What ruined the 60s was drugs’

As his documentary about the 1960s opens, the veteran actor talks working-class culture, Woody Allen and why he never liked drugs | Guardian, UK

How did 18th century’s literary women relieve domestic distress? With opiates

It wasn’t just men such as Coleridge and De Quincey who took drugs, study of Mary Robinson and Harriet Martineau reveals | Guardian, UK


International news

Session 61 of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs - 12th-16th March

Agenda and papers | UNODC, Austria

CND 61: Key issues and opportunities

This webinar on the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) focuses on its 61st Session, which will take place in Vienna from 12-16 March 2018. The Session will be the last major drug policy gathering of the international community before the 2019 target date set out by the 2009 Political Declaration and Action Plan | IDPC, UK

Balancing Treaty Stability and Change: Inter se modification of the UN drug control conventions to facilitate cannabis regulation (PDF)

The drug policy landscape is in a process of profound change, most notably with more and more countries moving towards a legal regulation of the cannabis market. This reality is increasing legal tensions within the international drug control regime, an almost universally accepted treaty-based system currently built on a suite of three UN treaties agreed | WOLA, TNI, GDPO, UK

Keep maintaining opiate-dependent prisoners

From the USA, a rare randomised trial found in favour of continuing methadone maintenance when patients entered prison rather than compulsory withdrawal. The potential benefits were most apparent in the near-100% continuation of treatment during the highly overdose-prone weeks after leaving prison | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Drug and Alcohol Review

March edition. Includes 4 open access articles on the alcohol industry | DAR, UK

Narcopisos: Spain's 'drug flats' give focus for fight against heroin threat

Neighbourhood groups want more action from police and politicians to shut down apartments | Guardian, UK

Jeff Sessions says US prosecutors will not pursue small-time marijuana cases

Law enforcement lacks resources to take on ‘routine cases’ and will focus on gangs and larger conspiracies, attorney general says | Guardian, UK

Donald Trump advocates death penalty for drug dealers in rambling speech

President covers wide range of topics at Pittsburgh rally before mentioning Republican candidate Rick Saccone whose campaign he was there to endorse | Guardian, UK

Rocco Morabito: Cocaine kingpin to be extradited to Italy

Uruguay has agreed to extradite a notorious drug trader known as the "cocaine king of Milan" back to Italy | BBC, UK

Life is 'more beautiful' for girl who gouged out her eyes while high on Crystal Meth

A young woman who blinded herself while high on crystal meth has spoken about the experience - which she claims has made her a happier person | Independent, UK

We have a location for the first supervised drug injecting room - what happens next?

The new centre will be operated by Merchants Quay Ireland on Dublin’s south quays | Journal, Ireland

How cigarettes are advertised and on sale near schools in many countries

School children around the world are being exposed on a daily basis to cigarette advertising and promotions by a tobacco industry that needs to recruit the young to maintain its vast profits | Irish Times, Ireland

The Tobacco Atlas

The sixth edition of The Tobacco Atlas finds the tobacco industry is increasingly targeting vulnerable populations in emerging markets, such as Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, where people are not protected by strong tobacco control regulations | Tobacco Atlas, USA

Are We Reviving Too Many Opioid Overdoses? Is This Really a Question?

A new paper suggests the overdose-reversing drug naloxone presents a “moral hazard.” The economists’ case is built on an immoral premise | Slate, USA

Here’s How Fentanyl Took Over The US Drug Market In Just Five Years

Fentanyl now kills more people in the US than any other drug. It seems to have started with 14 overdoses in Rhode Island in 2013 | BuzzFeed, USA

Gambling Disorder Screening Day 2018 Toolkit

Gambling Disorder Screening Day is Tuesday, March 13, 2018 and this year’s Screening Day Toolkit has even more free resources to make hosting Screening Day easier than ever | CHA, USA

A menthol cigarette ban may influence smokers to quit

One month after Ontario fully banned menthol in cigarettes, twice as many menthol smokers attempted to quit compared to how many had predicted they would do so in the months leading up to the ban, according to a small study in the Canadian province | Reuters, USA

Doctors launch Aussie-first trial to treat PTSD with ecstasy

MDMA, the illegal drug also known as ecstasy, would be used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder in an Australian-first trial | Herald Sun, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Resettlement for prisoners with drug & mental health problems

Earlier this month (2 March 2018), a systematic review of the research into programmes supporting resettlement for prisoners with drug and mental health problems was published | Russell Webster, UK

Mother's Day: Remembering my alcoholic mum

On her first Mother's Day without her mum, Ella (not her real name) shares her story of growing up with an alcoholic parent | BBC Newsbeat, UK

Is cannabis the answer to older people’s booze problems?

Baby boomers and Generation X-ers, take note: mindful drinking is not the only solution to mindless drinking | Guardian opinion, UK

FDA is using 'bad science' by claiming kratom is an opioid

Last month, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) continued its attacks on kratom, a natural plant used by millions of Americans for an improved quality of life and pain reduction | The Hill opinion, USA

Ecstasy bid for post-traumatic stress disorder study

Changing guidelines for prescriptions have left people like me without care | Washin ton Post outlook, USA