Weekly news - 13th April 2018


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How to spot child drug couriers campaign

Bus drivers and train staff are being given tips on how to spot children being used as drug couriers | BBC, UK

Blackpool struggles to kick heroin amid seaside deprivation

Locals blame poverty and budget cuts for its position as a national hotspot for deaths from the drug | Guardian, UK

Self-Representation Guide for Drug Possession Offences

This guide will help you after arrest for personal possession of drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (‘MDA’). This guide will take you through the process step-by-step and explain all possible outcomes as clearly as possible | Release, UK

United Kingdom drug situation: Focal Point annual report

Annual report and data tables from the UK Focal Point on Drugs on the national prevalence, impact, prevention and treatment of drug use | PHE, UK

April issue of DDN magazine - out now

How far do you have to go to show that something’s a good idea, it’s cost effective, and that it works? We know that safe spaces, such as DCRs, save lives and that supporting instead of punishing is the only humane approach to drug policy | DDN, UK

Home Secretary launches Serious Violence Strategy

Home Secretary Amber Rudd today sets out a multi-million pound commitment to steering young people away from crime and tackling violent drug-dealing gangs through the government’s first Serious Violence Strategy (PDF) | Home Office and The Rt Hon Amber Rudd MP, UK

Amber Rudd: Drugs the 'biggest driver' of violence spate

The home secretary has announced a crackdown on drugs networks in England and Wales, citing a "strong link" between drugs and rising violent crime | BBC, UK

Why London's Teenagers Are Killing Each Other

Today, the Home Office launches a new strategy to deal with youth violence – but is it focusing on the right driving causes? | VICE, UK

Coke dealers are handing out ‘buy five, get one free’ loyalty cards to users

Harry Shapiro, of DrugWise, told the Daily Telegraph: ‘The level of competition on the street means they have to offer an incentive to get their customers to stay with the one dealer | Metro, UK

New drug test to detect spice or mamba

A blood test has been developed to detect a potentially lethal chemical used in former legal highs | BBC, UK

Mutual aid toolkit for alcohol and drug misuse treatment

Evidence and guidance on the benefits of mutual aid in preventing and treating alcohol and drug dependency | PHE, UK

Joint working between substance misuse and children's services: Revised Guidance by Public Health England

Consultation. Public Health England (PHE) Alcohol, Drug and Tobacco Directorate have commissioned TONIC to consult with relevant stakeholders working in substance misuse (drug and alcohol) services as well as children and families services to understand and further joint working between these two agencies in local areas | PHE, UK

Government to announce £9m dark web crackdown to tackle paedophiles, drugs and arms dealers

A ‘sickening shopping list of services and products are available’ online, home secretary will warn | Independent, UK

Substance misuse-related poisoning deaths, England and Wales, 1993–2016

In recent years there has been an increase in the availability of ‘novel psychoactive substances (NPS)’ or ‘legal highs’. In turn, there is concern as to the risks these compounds pose as compared to those posed by traditionally misused substances such as illicit diamorphine (heroin), methadone, cocaine, and amfetamines | Drug Science, Policy and Law, UK

The economic impact of changes in alcohol consumption in the UK (PDF)

The alcohol industry (both manufacturing and sales) is important to the UK Economy as it supports thousands of jobs (IAS, 2017a; Oxford Economics, 2016). However, there are many well documented adverse effects of high alcohol consumption, most notably on public health | Fraser of Allander Institute, UK

Is it all smoke without fire? (PDF)

Welsh Primary School Children’s Perceptions of Electronic Cigarettes | PHI, UK

Dangerous diversion of Diazepam down by potentially more than 60%

Analysis indicates trading in top strength 10mg Diazepam is down by 64% as MHRA and partners work hard to stop illegal diversion of medicines to the black market | MHRA, UK

A new approach to formulating and appraising drug policy: A multi-criterion decision analysis applied to alcohol and cannabis regulation

[Open access] Drug policy, whether for legal or illegal substances, is a controversial field that encompasses many complex issues. Policies can have effects on a myriad of outcomes and stakeholders differ in the outcomes they consider and value, while relevant knowledge on policy effects is dispersed across multiple research disciplines | IJDP, UK

Up to 50 offenders challenged to tackle drug abuse

A new scheme aimed at challenging offenders to tackle their drug and alcohol abuse is being introduced in Northern Ireland | BBC, UK

All alcohol bought at airport shops to be placed in sealed bags under plans to crackdown on drunk passengers

All alcohol bought at airport shops will be placed in sealed bags under Government plans to crackdown on drunk passengers who disrupt flights | Telegraph, UK

Risk thresholds for alcohol consumption: combined analysis of individual-participant data for 599,912 current drinkers in 83 prospective studies

Low-risk limits recommended for alcohol consumption vary substantially across different national guidelines. To define thresholds associated with lowest risk for all-cause mortality and cardiovascular disease, we studied individual-participant data from 599,912 current drinkers without previous cardiovascular disease | Lancet, UK

Just one alcoholic drink a day could shorten your life, study says

An analysis of 600,000 drinkers [see above] found that drinking five to 10 alcoholic drinks a week was likely to shorten a person's life by up to six months | BBC, UK

Pupils: Drugs:Written question - HL6661

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to protect pupils from new psychoactive substances which are not illegal but aim to mimic illegal substances | Parliament.uk, UK

Hepatitis B: explaining the screening result

Important information for women with hepatitis B, to help explain their screening result | PHE, UK

Is the worldwide popularity of the ‘12 steps’ matched by evidence of effectiveness?

The deficit in UK recovery resources combined with heightened profile of abstinence-based recovery form the backdrop to this hot topic on 12-step mutual aid fellowships such as Alcoholics Anonymous. To the extent that there is evidence of their effectiveness, can this be attributed to the more distinct components of the 12 steps, or established mechanisms of behaviour change? | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Five benefits of drug and alcohol treatment

Drug and alcohol treatment brings a host of benefits to individuals, families and communities... | Collective Voice blog, UK

Xanax: how does it work and what are the side effects?

More teenagers and young people use drugs than any other age group: in 2017, 16.5% of 16- to 19-year-olds and 21.2% of 20- to 24-year-olds across England and Wales said they had taken drugs in the past year | Conversation, UK