Daily news - 2nd June 2020

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Coronavirus frequently updated resources

COVID-19 and addiction: webinars, podcasts and online discussions | SSA

Treatment and recovery services – and COVID-19 |Collective Voice

COVID-19 Information Hub | Scottish Drugs Forum

COVID-19 and smoking: resources, research and news | BMJ

Coronavirus: information and advice hub - alcohol | Alcohol Change UK

COVID-19 resources page for people who use drugs (PWUD) and drug service providers | EMCDDA


UK news

DDN June 2020 out now

Innovative developments and impressive collaboration have characterised our sector’s response to the crisis. But what we also need to keep up with are the changes in the drugs market and regional trends that could tip the drug-related deaths crisis into further catastrophe. One of the trends identified by Release’s new drug monitoring network is increased use of benzodiazepines, so our cover story looks at how we can respond to this by developing urgent new pathways and treatment protocols | DDN, UK

Call for evidence

This inquiry will focus on four key areas: the integration of services; inequalities in access and outcome; the relationship between local and national services; and the role of business and the third sector – charities, volunteers and community groups – during coronavirus.The deadline for written evidence submissions is Monday 29 June 2020 | UK Parliament, UK

Hepatitis C in England and the UK

Latest PHE hepatitis C virus (HCV) reports and supporting documents, for England and the UK. [Updated with 2020 dataset] | PHE, UK

Will Coronavirus Put An End To Boozy 'Brits Abroad' Culture?

Mallorca was trying to reinvent itself even before Covid-19. Will Brits be welcome post-lockdown? | Huffington Post, UK

How is the COVID-19 pandemic changing our use of illegal drugs? An overview of ongoing research

The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to have substantially affected our use of legal and illegal drugs. In the UK, we have adapted to the closure of pubs and restaurants by purchasing considerably more alcohol in supermarkets and off-licences | SSA, UK

Drug and alcohol use under lockdown

We don’t yet have much reliable research on what has happened to peoples’ patterns of drug and alcohol use during lockdown | Safer Nightlife, UK

New Horizons 2020: Call for applications

Applications are now invited for our New Horizons grants programme for innovative and future-facing academic research on 'Groups, Communities and Alcohol Harm | Alcohol Change UK, UK

Turning Point School of Art: 3 Questions

We asked staff from across Turning Point to share their experiences and thoughts about art, creativity and well-being | Turnong Point, UK

Murdered teen ‘served poorly’ by lack of guidance around county lines victims found away from home area

Serious case review adds to calls for revision of child protection frameworks in order to better safeguard children against harm from outside the family | Community Care, UK


International news

Ganja Licensing in Jamaica Learning lessons and setting standards (PDF)

[From April 2020] For many years there has been disquiet in the countries of the English-speaking Caribbean about the disproportionate punishments for cannabis offenders, who in their thousands were being incarcerated for what were widely perceived as minor offences | GDPO, UK

QMJC May 2020 - “Like being put on an ice floe and shoved away”: A qualitative study of the impacts of opioid-related policy changes on people who take opioids

In May 2020, members of Qualitative Methods Journal Club (QMJC) reviewed Antoniou et al.’s paper. “Like being put on an ice floe and shoved away”: A qualitative study of the impacts of opioid-related policy changes on people who take opioids | SSA, UK

Coronavirus: South Africans cheer as alcohol goes back on sale

Long queues have formed outside shops selling alcohol in South Africa after restrictions on its sale, imposed two months ago as part of measures to fight Covid-19, were lifted | BBC, UK

Compulsory drug detention and rehabilitation centres in Asia and the Pacific in the context of COVID-19 (PDF)

Against the backdrop of COVID-19, recalling the 2012 Joint Statement on compulsory drug detention and rehabilitation centres1 and the 2020 Joint Statement on COVID-19 in prisons and other closed settings2 , United Nations entities urgently appeal to Member States to permanently close compulsory drug detention and rehabilitation centres and implement voluntary, evidence-informed and rights-based health and social services in the community as an important measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 and to facilitate the recovery and reintegration of those in the centres back into their families and communities | UNODC et al, Thailand et al

Lesbian, gay, and bisexual older adults at higher risk for substance use

Sexual minority adults ages 50+, who may face stigma and discrimination, at risk for non-medical use of drugs, including cannabis, opioids, and tranquilizers | EurekAlert, USA

Pod-based e-cigarettes have higher potential to foster addiction than other devices

JUUL and similar pod-based e-cigarettes have been popular with teenagers and young adults since they came on the market in 2015, but little has been known about their health effects | News Medical, USA

Estrogen's role in the sex differences of alcohol abuse

Fluctuating estrogen levels may make alcohol more rewarding to female mice, according to new research in JNeurosci. Untangling the involved signaling pathways could unveil sex-based treatments for alcohol use disorders | Medical Xpress, USA

How the Drug War Is a Tool to Criminalize LGBTQ+ People

When we think of the criminalization of the LGBTQ+ community, our minds likely veer to the Stonewall Riots of 1969. But to see that as the whole picture is to erase the struggles that have continued to plague our community over the last half century | Filter Magazine, USA

US Forces Deployed to Colombia to Help Wage Futile War on Cocaine

Diplomatic officials announced May 27 that the US is sending an armed forces unit to Colombia. From June, the Security Force Assistance Brigade (SFAB) begins a four-month operation, training Colombian military forces in fighting that country’s drug war | Filter Magazine, USA

Cannabis referendum: Helen Clark urges Kiwis to vote 'yes' on legalising personal use of drug

Former Prime Minister Helen Clark is encouraging Kiwis to vote "yes" in the looming referendum on legalising personal use of cannabis, as part of a new campaign aimed at the large chunk of voters who are undecided | NZHerald, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

The UK’s drug policy is allowing a social genocide to go unnoticed – and coronavirus is making things worse

Drug treatment doesn’t enjoy the privilege of being based on evidence – even though we have ample evidence from the government’s own scientific advisors – but in political ideology. That determines who lives, and who dies | Independent voices, UK

Call for evidence: The UK review of medical cannabis

This call for evidence seeks stakeholder views on the regulation of the manufacture, importation, distribution, supply, prescription and use of cannabis-based medicines and products for medicinal use in the UK. The closing date is 5pm on Friday 26 June 2020 | CDPRG blog, UK

Tackling ACEs with professional and lived experience - video

A conversation on ACEs with the director of Population Health, Andy Knox, and others in the field of Trauma | David Higham, UK

Alcohol warning labels reduce sales, change minds, and increase knowledge

Results from the Northern Territories Alcohol Labels study in Canada | IAS blog, UK