Daily news - 18th September 2020

Weekly subscribe button

UK news

Representation of adverse childhood experiences is associated with lower public stigma towards people who use drugs: an exploratory experimental study

Stigmatising attitudes towards people who use drugs are pervasive amongst the public. We investigated whether public stigma was affected by presentation of a history of adversity, and how substance use was described | DEPP, UK

Commission on Alcohol Harm (2020) report calls for 'science-led' alcohol strategy

A report from a recent Commission on Alcohol Harm undertaken by the Alcohol Health Alliance (AHA) has been released, calling for a new comprehensive alcohol strategy for England | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Drivers who kill others could receive life sentences under new laws

Drivers who kill others after speeding, racing or using a phone could receive life sentences under new legislation. Those who cause death by careless driving under the influence of drink or drugs could also get a life sentence | BBC, UK

The Impact of lockdown on people who use drugs - free event

Thu, 24 September 2020. 12:45 – 13:45 BST. The Drug Science Student Society is partnering with the Global Drug Survey to work out what's been happening to people who use drugs throughout the lockdown | Drug Science, UK

Recovery College Summit

Fri, September 25, 2020. 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM BST. A half-day online Recovery College Summit with like-hearted people who hail from all parts of the recovery ecology | Recovery College, UK [See also post from William White Papers in blogs section below]

Humankind impact report

The 2019/20 Humankind Impact Report, has highlighted how Humankind services are creating fairer chances for more people than ever with over 76,000 people supported across the county last year | humankind, UK 

Des: Daniel Mays received unofficial award for ‘most cigarettes smoked onscreen'

A number of viewers have complained about the amount of smoking in 1980s-set drama | Independent, UK

Man, 72, charged following £900k cannabis seizure

A 72-year-old man has been charged after suspected cannabis with an estimated street value of £900,000 was seized by police | BBC, UK


International news

Study Blames Facebook for Spread of Damaging Fentanyl Myth

The research, carried out by public health experts at Northeasten University in Boston, focused on reports of first responders overdosing on fentanyl just by touching or being near the drug – a myth debunked by the American College of Medical Toxicology in 2017 | VICE, UK

French government urged to speed up medical cannabis trials

French deputies on Wednesday urged President Emmanuel Macron's government to stop dragging its feet over testing cannabis for medical use, saying its tardiness compared to other European countries was "worrying" | France 24, France

UNODC and WHO - International Standards on Drug Use Prevention

Mon, Sep 21, 2020 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM BST. The presentation will discuss evidence-based prevention of drug use according to the UNODC-WHO Second Updated Edition of the International Standards. The participants will learn about which interventions have been found to be effective in preventing drug use and other risky behaviours according to scientific evidence and as summarised in the Standards | ISSUP, Lebanon

Preparing future clinicians to intervene in opioid crisis

Opioid use disorder and overdose have reached unprecedented levels around the world. In the United States, remediation of pain is one of the most common reasons American adults seek healthcare. Therefore, it is vital that clinicians practicing in diverse roles and settings have a clinical understanding of pain and substance use disorders as well as knowledge about public health and opioid policy interventions | EurekAlert, USA

Vapers are not using JUUL e-cigarettes to stop smoking or improve health, Twitter study shows

The researchers say this finding, which challenges JUUL's stated mission of improving smokers' lives, could help hone anti-smoking and vaping efforts targeted at Twitter users, particularly underage teens | News Medical, USA

B.C. moves to dramatically increase access to safe alternatives to illicit drugs

British Columbians who use illicit drugs on even an intermittent basis could soon be eligible for pharmaceutical alternatives as the province significantly expands access to a “safer supply” to combat record overdose deaths caused by toxic street drugs | Globe and Mail, Canada

Impacts of COVID-19 and associated restrictions on people who use illicit stimulants in Australia: Findings from the Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on travel and gathering have likely had major impacts on drug supply, use and harms and there have been significant challenges with delivery of drug treatment and harm reduction services | NDARC, Australia

Infographics highlight naloxone access disparity

Naloxone has been used as a response to opioid overdose by paramedics for decades, but its availability differs drastically between the states in Australia. A new set of infographics, collated by Burnet Institute PhD student and research assistant Penny Hill, will help to dispel some of that confusion, especially for drug users and carers | Burnet Institute, Australia

Legalising cannabis in Aotearoa New Zealand: What does the evidence say?

To help people decide how they will vote in the upcoming referendum, we have summarised what we know about the possible impacts of legalising cannabis. This information focuses on the impact of legalising recreational cannabis use, not on the medicinal uses of cannabis, which has its own law | Office of the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor, New Zealand

Smokers increasingly using e-cigarettes to quit, survey shows

People who smoke are increasingly using e-cigarettes to try to quit smoking, a study by researchers at the University of Otago, Wellington, has found | University of Otago, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Alcohol’s Public Face And Private Harm

Alcohol is inflicting long-lasting harm across all areas of society and family life - report of the Commission on Alcohol Harm | Russell Webster, UK

Kit Malthouse: We’re increasing GPS tracking and sobriety ankle tags so criminals have no where to hide

Electronic monitoring is a powerful tool in the criminal justice system, helping our hard-working police and probation officers keep an eye on dangerous and prolific offenders | i news opinion, UK

Fear or Compassion - what's the way to change policy?

I’ve been thinking a lot about the politics of drug and alcohol treatment recently.  Obviously this is something that’s on my mind in a certain sense anyway – it affects my day job, which is commissioning (putting in place contracts and managing them) treatment for people in Dorset and BCP (Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole) | Thinking to some purpose blog, UK

The Scottish Whiskey Industry's contribution to the Production of Hand Sanitiser

In March, the Scotch Whisky industry mobilised quickly in the support of health services, emergency services, local communities and other industries to play their part in providing hand sanitiser and ethanol | Portman Group blog, UK

Regulating Cannabis – virtual book launch

Authors Toby Seddon and Will Floodgate discuss their new book Regulating Cannabis | Toby Seddon, UK

Capturing the Canadian cannabis market

The recent cannabis investment bubble may have comprehensively burst, but the ‘Green Rush’ that followed legalisation in Canada left a legacy of corporate giants poised to dominate global markets in the future. Corporate capture not only leads to monopolies, which are rarely good for consumers or small producers, but also creates undue political influence | Transform blog, UK

Networking UK Recovery Community Organizations: A 2020 Progress Report

The international recovery advocacy (and peer recovery support) movement is marked by the proliferation of grassroots recovery community organizations that are distinct from traditional addiction treatment organizations and recovery mutual aid societies | William White Papers, USA

Points Roundtable: “American Rehab” from Reveal

In July, Reveal, the broadcast channel of the Center for Investigative Reporting, released its eight-part series American Rehab, which centered on an investigation into the drug treatment program Cenikor and the group’s emphasis on “work therapy.” | Points blog, USA

Psychedelics and the TGA: What journalists need to know

Over the past several weeks, a series of misleading news reports have suggested that both MDMA and psilocybin could soon be made ‘legal.’ This reporting aims to dramatize news of an application made by Mind Medicine Australia (MMA) seeking to make Schedule 8 entries for MDMA and psilocybin, which currently only have entries as Schedule 9 drugs | AOD MediaWatch, Australia

Why RDT (roadside drug testing) is failing

Why, you might ask yourself, is there roadside drug testing (RDT)? The answer on most people’s lips – that it improves safety on the roads and reduces accidents – would be the logical answer; yet former magistrate David Heilpern recently made it abundantly clear that this is not the case | Echo, Australia