Daily news - 11th June 2019

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UK news

Care to Share Report

We analysed UK public social media messages related to drugs and alcohol over a 2 month period, capturing 198,900 public messages from Twitter, forums & blog channels. We were particularly interested in looking at how social media conversations revealed the stigma of addiction and how we can address stigma on-line | Phoenix Futures, UK

Addiction widespread in society with more than half of britons knowing a victim, new poll finds

New findings confirm rise of addiction across society, with alcohol in lead | Action on Addiction, UK

One in nine Brits have taken cocaine

The results of a YouGov survey in summer 2018 asking about eight different drugs reveal that a third (34%) admit to having taken cannabis, including 5% who say they currently do so | YouGov, UK

Panorama: Britain's drink problem - BBC iPlayer

With alcohol-related deaths on the rise, Adrian Chiles investigates what we know about the dangers of drinking, and why the alcohol industry isn’t telling us more | BBC, UK

What we don't know about addiction - video

In this exclusive video talk, Assoc Prof and Researcher, Ian Hamilton discusses how little we actually know about addiction, raises the question of gender and asks why is there a lack of research around women and drugs? | My POV Online, UK

Personality traits of drug users

The social environment is an influential factor with regards to drug addiction. However, some people living in the same environment become drug users, whilst others resist. Is this difference just random or are there key personality traits that help people to avoid drug addiction? | Medical Xpress, UK

Walk a Mile in Our Shoes

20th – 25th June. View the route here. A week long fundraising walk along the Thames Path all the way to Parliament. The Anyone’s Child families will be leading this walk to raise awareness of the harms caused by prohibition - come and join us! | Anyone's Child, UK

Maidenhead: Take Drugs Seriously

20th June 7 – 8.30pm. Sportsable, Maidenhead SL6 1BN. Panel discussion about how a new approach to drugs could better protect communities from harm. Speakers include Anne-Marie and Rose of Anyone’s Child, and Jason Kew, Chief Inspector of Thames Valley Police | Anyone's Child, UK

The Role of Pubs and Bars in Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation - survey

The project seeks to generate new knowledge and insights into how pubs and bars can play a role in tackling loneliness and social isolation. The research will explore how such venues create a space in which people can engage in social interaction and in so doing experience feelings of sociability and belonging that are crucial factors in the wellbeing of both individuals and communities. To complete this survey you should be currently or recently employed in the pub, bar or hospitality sector | Loughborough University, UK

Birthday honour for 'free heroin' Durham police chief

Mike Barton, who retired on Friday as chief constable of Durham Police, has become a Commander of the British Empire for services to policing | BBC, UK


International news

'They broke my mental shackles': could magic mushrooms be the answer to depression?

New trials have shown the drug psilocybin to be highly effective in treating depression, with Oakland the latest US city to in effect decriminalise it last week. Some researchers say it could become ‘indefensible’ to ignore the evidence – but how would it work as a reliable treatment? | Telegraph, UK

Spirit Airlines bans passenger for life for vaping on flight

The passenger was flying from Detroit to New Orleans on 4 June when a flight attendant saw him take a drag on an e-cigarette before exhaling into his bag | Independent, UK

Medical marijuana does not reduce opioid deaths

Legalizing medical marijuana does not reduce the rate of fatal opioid overdoses, according to researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine | Science Daily, USA

Bridging the Gaps to Advance Research in the Cannabis Industry

An interview with Joshua Crossney, who wants to bring together analytical scientists with the medical cannabis community. Interview conducted at Pittcon 2019 by Alina Shrourou, BSc | News Medical, USA

Texas governor signs law increasing the age to buy tobacco products to 21

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has signed Senate Bill 21 into law, which will end the sale of tobacco products to those under 21. Supporters say increasing the minimum age by three years should reduce the risk of addiction | CNN, USA

Filter Video: Inside Portugal’s First Mobile Safe Consumption Site

In April of this year, Portugal, a country well known for having decriminalized all drugs in 2001, got its first safe consumption site—on wheels. It’s a brand-new, shiny white Peugeot Boxer van | Filter Magazine, USA

If We Wrote About Caffeine Like We Do Other Drugs…

Genelle Chaconas can’t go a day without caffeine. They consume the powerful stimulant in the form of coffee—a psychoactive drink derived from cooking the beans of an exotic shrub native to Latin America and Africa. They consume a cup each morning, and then repeat the ritual several times throughout the day | Filter Magazine, USA

AOC Pushes To Make It Easier To Study Shrooms And Other Psychedelic Drugs

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) filed legislation on Friday to remove a legal barrier that scientists say makes it unnecessarily difficult for them to study the medical benefits of psychedelic drugs like psilocybin and MDMA | Forbes, USA

Changing the narrative website

Changing The Narrative is a network of reporters, researchers, academics, and advocates concerned about the way  media represents drug use and addiction. Our mission is to help journalists and opinion leaders provide accurate, humane, and scientifically-grounded information in this contested terrain | Health in Justice, USA

A rare glimpse into the contents of Australian drugs: Chemical analysis of Queensland police samples 2015-2016

Unlike Europe, Australia does not have an early warning system for the detection of Novel Psychoactive Substances (NPS). Consequently, the prevalence of NPS within traditional drug markets is often based on speculation or the results of pill testing services | Dr Stephen Bright on LinkedIn, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Asking politicians the right questions about drugs

It is unlikely many people predicted that drugs would become a defining question of the Conservative leadership campaign. Such, though, is politics; and this week we have witnessed the remarkable spectacle of candidates lining up to admit previous drug consumption | Talking Drugs, UK

It’s ridiculous that Michael Gove’s drug use could prevent him becoming Tory leader

He is by far the most competent candidate. This hysteria is further proof that UK drug laws are in desperate need of reform | Guardian, UK

Michael Gove's leadership challenge is dead. So let's move on from his cocaine use and tackle the drug trade itself

“Form a line here” is plastered over today’s front page of the Metro. “Gove the cocaine hypocrite must quit” is the Mirror’s take. Even Michael Gove’s former employer, The Times, has “Gove pleads for second chance over cocaine use” as its lead story | Independent voices, UK

Voice of the Mirror: One-time drug taking MPs could use their (under the) influence to spark debate

If whoever enters Number 10 next opens a debate on drugs in our society, their experiences will not have gone to waste | Mirror, UK

Brexit’s drug problem

As Jacob Rees-Mogg’s widely-lambasted new book exemplifies, Brexiteers are never shy in celebrating the 19th century as the golden-age of free-trade that Britain must return to | Talking Drugs, UK

There’s a (drug policy) storm coming

We are currently witnessing a seismic shift within the global drug policy landscape. Some of these shifts have resulted from changes in global drug supply and demand | Science Direct, UK