Daily news - 16th October 2019

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UK news

Written Statement: Public Health (Minimum Price for Alcohol) (Minimum Unit Price) (Wales) Regulations 2019

Today, I have laid the Public Health (Minimum Price for Alcohol) (Minimum Unit Price) (Wales) Regulations 2019. These regulations – if agreed by the National Assembly – will introduce a minimum unit price (MUP) for alcohol of 50p | Welsh Government, UK

DDN Magazine will be 15 years old in November!

To mark this anniversary we are having a redesign. We will still be bringing you all the latest news, views, jobs and features free of charge in print and online.  But in a modern fresh format | DDN, UK

Modelling the impact of alcohol duty policies since 2012 in England & Scotland

Changes in UK alcohol duty since 2012 have led to increased levels of alcohol consumption, greater levels of alcohol-related ill health, prematuremortality,higher rates of alcohol-related crime and workplace absence than if the alcohol duty escalator had remained in place until 2015 as originally planned | University of Sheffield, UK

New drug-driving laws to come into force with roadside test kit unveiled

The new legislation sees a zero-tolerance approach to the eight drugs most associated with illegal use, including cannabis, heroin and cocaine | Daily Record, UK

Important Factors for the Scottish Task Force on Drug Related Deaths to consider

What urgent steps should we be taking to reduce the level of drug related deaths in Scotland? | Phoenix Futures, UK

Professor Alex Stevens and the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs

That this House notes with concern the recent resignation of Professor Alex Stevens from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD); commends his invaluable contribution to the ACMD as Chair of its Working Group on Custody-Community Transitions;... | EDM.Parliament.uk, UK

Hooked: the preview - audio

Drink, drugs, addiction - it can happen to anyone. Melissa and Jade share their stories of incredible highs, to the rock bottom lows and will be joined by guests along the way | BBC Radio 5, UK

There’s a binge drinking boom among older people – what does it mean for the nation’s mental health?

Although enjoying a glass of red wine now and again may be healthy for your heart and gut, drinking too much alcohol can put you at higher risk of developing many serious health conditions | Independent, UK

How the UK Fell Back in Love with Magic Mushrooms

The rate of shroom use has doubled among young people, to a 12-year high. What prompted the return of the old fashioned trip? | VICE, UK

How a call centre job turned a drug addict's life around

Video. Nicola's heroin addiction sent her on a cycle of offending that saw her in and out of prison 12 times | BBC, UK

Take part in Alcohol Awareness Week

Alcohol Awareness Week is an opportunity for charities, local authorities, GP surgeries, businesses and more to think and talk about alcohol harm with their communities | Alcohol Change UK, UK

A multi-agency response: how can we work together to support those who use New Psychoactive Substances (NPS)?

Free Event. Wednesday, 27 November 2019. | London, Bristol, Manchester & Leeds | November - March 2020. The aim of these free spotlight events is to give managers of homelessness and supported housing services the opportunity to look at what a multi-agency response could look like in relation to working with people who use New Psychoactive Substances | Homeless Link, UK

Mental health first aid training

With the recent observation of World Mental Health Day on 10 October, we would like to announce an amazing new project. Crew will be offering FREE mental health first aid training to people who take or who have taken drugs | Crew, UK

Survey - Your Voices

If you live in the UK and feel that your life has been impacted by drugs, the YourVoices campaign would love to hear your story. You may have been impacted directly, or through drug use by friends or family, or through your work. Your experiences may have been bad or good | CDPRG, UK

How Bristol assesses citizens' risk of harm – using an algorithm

Almost a quarter of population of city is processed by algorithm used to guide actions of frontline staff | Guardian, UK


International news

Vaping illness, deaths likely very rare beyond U.S., experts say

 E-cigarette or vaping-linked lung injuries that have killed 29 and sickened more than 1,000 people in the United States are likely to be rare in Britain and other countries where the suspect products are not widely used, specialists said on Monday | Reuters, UK

Harm Reduction International Condemns Porto Mayor’s Support for Reintroducing Criminal Penalties for Drug Use in Public Spaces

Last week, Mayor of Porto, Rui Moreira, stated his support for reintroducing criminal penalties for drug use in public spaces in the city. This announcement, made in a session of the Porto Municipal Assembly, represents a significant step back in Portugal’s drug policy | HRI, UK

ACT legalising cannabis will not stop it being a federal offence, warns Porter

Attorney general says new territory law does not override federal law which prohibits cannabis possession | Guardian, UK

Cannabis-related admissions to psychiatric hospitals rose 185% in eight years

Cannabis-related admissions to general and psychiatric hospitals increased by 90 per cent and 185 per cent respectively from 2008 to 2016, coinciding with a decline in perceived risk of regular use, according to new research | Irish Times, Ireland

New laws to stop drug gangs using youngsters

Laws tackling criminals who use youngsters to hold or deal drugs have been proposed after it emerged eight-year-olds are being used as runners in west Dublin | Independent, Ireland

Minister to seek approval on minimum pricing for alcohol

The Minister for Health has confirmed that he will seek Cabinet approval on the minimum unit price of alcohol by the end of the year | RTe, Ireland

Substance Abuse Hits Home for Close to Half of Americans

Close to half of U.S. adults, 46%, have dealt with substance abuse problems in their family: 18% have had just alcohol problems and 10% have had just drug problems, while 18% have experienced both | Gallup, USA

CBD or THC? Common Drug Test Can’t Tell the Difference

Those cannabidiol-laced gummy bears may be entirely legal, but they could still get you arrested on marijuana possession charges | NYTimes, USA

Troops who've seen combat are at higher risk for addition to opioids and heroin

In the study, entitled "Did the War on Terror Ignite an Opioid Epidemic?" economists with NBER, a non-profit that conducts economic research and disseminates it to policy makers, corporations and academia, determined that opioid abuse among combat-exposed veterans was 7 percentage points higher than among those who deployed but didn't see combat | Business Insider, USA

Mindfulness may reduce opioid cravings, study finds

People suffering from opioid addiction and chronic pain may have fewer cravings and less pain if they use both mindfulness techniques and medication for opioid dependence, according to Rutgers and other researchers | Medical Xpress, USA

As vaping illnesses rise, so do pleas to quit-smoking help lines

"I stopped for a few days and then I ended up buying new pods. The withdrawals got to me.” | Salon, USA

Dozens caged and shackled in Trinidad drug rehab center, police say

Dozens of people were found on Wednesday in squalid conditions, chained and in cages in a Trinidad and Tobago rehabilitation center run by a religious group for ex-prisoners and drug users, where some were tortured and held for years, police said | Reuters, USA

New Drug Trends report finds nearly half of people who regularly consume ecstasy have tested their drugs

The Drug Trends program at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) at UNSW Sydney, has surveyed people who regularly use illicit drugs about drug checking (often referred to as pill testing) the contents of their illicit drugs, and their illicit drug use at Australian music festivals | NDARC, Australia

Major Christian organisation offers to conduct pill testing on church grounds

A major Christian organisation has offered to conduct pill testing on church grounds if the NSW government green-lights a set of draft coronial recommendations over the drug-related deaths of six young festival-goers | Sydney Morning Herald, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Scotland’s drug statistics are a call to arms for radical reform

Scotland was recently shown to have the highest drug death per capita of any other European country, with the rest of the UK having the fifth-highest | Conservative Drug Policy Reform Group blog, UK

Broadway Lodge on Channel 5 cocaine documentary

Three-part documentary ‘Doing Drugs for Fun?’ aired on Channel 5 this week and includes coverage of Broadway Lodge. This fascinating series follows four young adults (Troi, Channel, Amber and Louis), as they explore the health dangers of cocaine and the dark side of its production in South America and supply in the UK | Broadway Lodge blog, UK

We Need Harm Reduction for All Drugs, Not Just Opioids

While we’ve made great strides with harm reduction for people who use opioids, we’re slow to provide non-abstinence-based treatment for people who use other drugs | Olivia Pennelle, USA

Opioid And Illicit Drug Use Among The Hispanic/Latino Populations

SAMHSA’s 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) estimates that 1.1 million Hispanic/Latino youth used illicit drugs in the past year, including 208,000 who misused opioids in the past year | SAMHSA blog, USA

Women using heroin in Kenya: why it’s important to intervene early in life

Heroin is the main drug taken by injection in Kenya. Mostly found and used in Kenya’s big cities – Mombasa and Nairobi – it’s hard to know just how widespread heroin use is. But estimates range between 18 000 and 33 000 people | Conversation, USA

Narcotics and Western Civilization: A Student-Based Reflection

In an effort to bring to the classroom the debates over global intoxicants, I was given the opportunity to teach an Honors College tutorial at the University of Maine titled “Narcotics in the Construction of Western Civilization.” | Points blog, USA

Legal cannabis celebrates its first anniversary in Canada: What’s next?

This week marks the first anniversary of Canada’s recreational cannabis legalization. It’s an appropriate time to review what happened last year and consider what’s coming next | Conversation, Canada

Who’s more against the Richmond medically supervised injection room – residents or the Herald Sun?

Negative coverage of the Richmond’s Medically Supervised Injecting Room (MSIR), Victoria’s one and only MSIR, poses a real threat to public health. The MSIR has been permitted on a trial basis for 24 months. Negative reporting may impact on the continuation of the MSIR beyond a trial, and such reporting is particularly apparent in the Herald Sun | AOD MediaWatch, Australia