Weekly news - 28th February 2020


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Amazon to donate to drug charity linked to Scientology

Exclusive: experts have queried methods of Narconon, which has given talks in UK schools | Guardian, UK

Philip Morris drew up plan for £1bn tobacco transition fund

Exclusive: firm accused of hypocrisy after talking to anti-tobacco MP about helping smokers switch products | Guardian, UK

A ‘dignity first’ approach to homelessness, drugs, and alcohol

Some of the issues at the junction of homelessness and substance use problems are complex. However, there are also very ‘basic’ things that we know can improve and save lives: providing food, shelter, healthcare, protection from violence and abuse, and access to lifesaving advice and resources. What are the practical, financial, and ideological barriers to meeting these essential needs? | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

England predicted to miss target of becoming smoke-free by 2030

The government is expected to miss its targetof England being smoke-free by 2030 because so many poorer people are still using cigarettes, Cancer Research UK (CRUK) has warned | Guardian, UK

Britons turn to alcohol to beat loneliness

More than one in ten (12%) Britons who experience loneliness are drinking to cope, according to a Turning Point/YouGov poll. The survey of more than 2,000 British adults reveals the issue is greater in the North (21%) than the South (10%), with the North West (26%) the most affected region in Britain | Turning Point, UK

Footprints Survey Report 2020 - Residential Registered Care Services

Every two years at Phoenix we ask the people who use our services the questions other people probably haven’t asked them. People who access services, particularly for substance use issues are asked a lot of questions. But our Footprints survey asks the questions that give us an understanding of the life lived before a person comes to us | Phoenix Futures, UK

Inside the Middlesbrough clinic where heroin users get a 'last chance'

Sitting in one of four booths, looking at himself in the mirror under a bright light, James injects himself with diamorphine - pharmaceutical heroin | BBC, UK

Programming document 2020-22

The Programming Document 2020-22 translates the long-term priorities defined by the EMCDDA Strategy 2025 into short-term operational priorities. The year 2020 marks the end of the first strategic roadmap and the beginning of the second one (towards 2025) and is a time for mid-term assessment and reflection on the way ahead | EMCDDA, Portugal

Drug, alcohol and mental health charity Addaction to change name

Drug, alcohol and mental health charity Addaction has announced that it will be rebranding, changing its name to We Are With You and launching a new website on 26 February 2020 | We Are With You, UK

Health matters: smoking and mental health

This edition of Health Matters focuses on smoking among people living with a broad range of mental health conditions | PHE, UK

Case study: Designing a smoking cessation intervention

How a smoking cessation intervention for people with common mental health problems in a psychological services setting has been designed | PHE, UK

Bring ex-addicts on board to tackle drug deaths crisis, say experts

Speakers make plea ahead of separate summits by Scottish and UK governments in Glasgow | Guardian, UK

Scotland's drug death crisis in six charts

Last July, the latest figures for drug-related deaths in Scotland led to the crisis being called a public health emergency | BBC, UK

Scotland 'could miss tobacco-free target by up to 16 years'

More than one in 10 people will still be smoking in 2034 despite a Scottish government commitment to stub out the habit by then, health campaigners say | BBC, UK

Wales' minimum alcohol price 'won't tackle middle class drinkers'

The new minimum price for alcohol is not "sufficient" to tackle middle-class drinkers, according to an addiction charity. Kaleidoscope's boss said alcohol consumption was "ridiculously high" in some of Wales' more affluent areas | BBC, UK

Northern Ireland needle exchange scheme use increases by 13%

There has been a 13% increase in the number of visits to needle and syringe exchange schemes across Northern Ireland, new figures show | BBC, UK

UK summit looks at tackling record drug deaths

The UK government is holding a drugs summit in Glasgow to discuss measures to tackle the record number of deaths | BBC, UK

Working to cut drug deaths

Drug users, their families and people working on the frontline to tackle the problem of substance misuse have told 350 delegates at the Scottish Drug Deaths Conference in Glasgow how the issue has affected their lives | Scottish Government, UK

Calls for safer consumption rooms at drug deaths conference

Around 350 delegates attended the 'landmark event' on Wednesday, where safer drug consumption rooms were discussed | STV, UK

Letter from the ACMD to the Home Secretary: GHB, GBL, and related compounds

Thank you for your letter of 6 January 2020 where you commissioned the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) to urgently review the classification and scheduling of GHB, GBL, and closely related compounds. The ACMD welcomes the commission and has prioritised this workstream | ACMD, UK

What is driving serious violence: drugs “The marketplace is more volatile and violent than it has ever been” (PDF)

This is the second in a series of reports investigating the drivers of serious violence in England and Wales in recent years. Building on the first publication, this report seeks to examine the role of drug markets as a driver, and draws on a range of existing (largely published) data and literature, as well as new research carried out for this report, including a ‘deep dive’ in an inner London borough and semi-structured interviews with law enforcement and policing experts across the country | Crest Advisory, UK

Review of drugs: phase one report

In February 2019, the Home Secretary appointed Professor Dame Carol Black to undertake an independent review of drugs. This was to inform the government’s thinking on what more can be done to tackle the harm that drugs cause. Dame Carol’s response to phase one of the commission provides a detailed analysis of the challenges posed by drug supply and demand, including the ways in which drugs fuel serious violence | Home Office, UK

Illegal drugs 'almost as easy to get as pizza'

More illegal drugs than ever before are coming into the UK - and buying them is almost as easy as ordering a pizza, the author of a major new report has said | BBC, UK

Government holds Glasgow summit to combat drug deaths - video

Today the UK government has been holding a summit in Glasgow to discuss ways to tackle it. It’s been hearing calls for all sorts of solutions – from changes in the law to more funding. Channel 4 News can reveal where residential rehab services were cut in Scotland  – as the drugs deaths crisis grew worse | Channel 4, UK

Drug consumption rooms are a 'distraction' says UK minister

Plans for drug consumption rooms to get addicts off the streets have been called a "distraction" by the UK government minister for crime | BBC, UK

Wine glass size may influence how much you drink in restaurants

The size of glass used for serving wine can influence the amount of wine drunk, suggests new research from the University of Cambridge, funded by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR). The study found that when restaurants served wine in 370ml rather than 300ml glasses they sold more wine, and tended to sell less when they used 250ml glasses. These effects were not seen in bars | University of Cambridge, UK

INCB Annual Report 2019

The INCB Annual Report, prepared in accordance with the international drug control treaties, examines the global drug control situation, and makes recommendations to Governments and regional and international organizations | INCB, Austria