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Daily news - 25th July 2022

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UK news

Drug law reform: letter from Minister for Drugs Policy

Letter from the Minister for Drugs Policy, Angela Constance, to UK Minister for Crime and Policing | Scottish Government, UK

Child vaping risks becoming ‘public health catastrophe’ in UK, experts warn

There are fears that the e-cigarette boom has the potential to create a generation of young people hooked on nicotine | Guardian, UK

Most prisoners who need drug treatment on release don't get it - but one council bucks the trend

A local authority has one of the best rates of engagement in the country, with 62% of prison leavers who need drug treatment receiving vital help. But how is Sandwell, a place with high rates of poverty offering people a lifeline? | Sky News, UK

Protest march called in Belfast after deaths of 14 homeless people

Activists demand help for vulnerable as cost of living and public health emergency put more people on streets | Guardian, UK

Delivering Alcohol, Drugs and Multiple Risk Training and Workforce Development Across Glasgow City (PDF)

In early 2021, Scottish Drugs Forum (SDF) was awarded the tender to deliver Lot 2 of the Delivery of Alcohol Brief Interventions (ABI) and Alcohol, Drugs and Multiple Risk Training and Workforce Development for NHS GGC Glasgow City Health & Social Care Partnership on behalf of Glasgow City ADP | SDF, UK

Supply of Drugs to Children Under 16 (Aggravated Offence)

I beg to move, That leave be given to bring in a Bill to make the offence of supplying or offering to supply a controlled drug aggravated when the person to whom the drug is supplied or offered is under 16; and for connected purposes | They work for you, UK

Rough sleeping drug and alcohol treatment grant: privacy notice

Information about the data we collect from people in services funded by the rough sleeping drug and alcohol treatment grant | OHID, UK

Doctor licensing for diamorphine prescribing: privacy notice

Information about the data we collect as part of the license application process for doctors to prescribe diamorphine to treat opioid dependence | OHID, UK

Prize fund for Recovery Street Film Festival 2022

We’re delighted to announce the prizes for Recovery Street Film Festival 2022. There is a prize fund of £500 in Amazon vouchers on offer. First place will receive £300, second place will receive, £150 and third place will receive £50 | Phoenix Futures, UK

Recent trends in benzodiazepine use: harms, challenges and best practice

Thu, 18 August 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 BST. Webinar exploring recent trends in benzodiazepine use, associated harms and service responses | Collective Voice, UK

Kate Moss ‘sick and angry’ at being made a scapegoat for taking cocaine

The British supermodel talks candidly on BBC radio’s Desert Island Discs about her drug use, defending Johnny Depp and being ‘objectified and scared’ | Guardian, UK

Mexborough: Road dug up to repair cannabis factory damage

Officers recovered cannabis plants with a street value of £80,000 from the house on Doncaster Road in Mexborough on Wednesday | BBC, UK

Isle of Man woman jailed over cocaine-hidden-in-speaker plot

A woman who agreed to have £27,585 worth of cocaine hidden in a speaker sent to her home has been jailed for three years and 11 months | BBC, UK


International news

From battlefields to CBD: can hemp pioneer wean Afghanistan off opium?

Oil from the versatile plant makes cannabis medicine CBD and its fibre has a range of uses but the Taliban need convincing | Guardian, UK

Leading figures urge drugs firm to lower price of ‘game-changing’ HIV prevention drug

Signatories including Olly Alexander, Stephen Fry and Joseph Stiglitz issue a letter asking ViiV to make cabotegravir affordable to low- and middle-income countries | Guardian, UK

Tailoring vaccination campaigns and COVID-19 services for people who use drugs

25 July 2022 / 11:00 to 13:30 (GMT+1). Online. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Harm Reduction International, and Vocal Kenya invite you to a regional webinar on the new Harm Reduction, COVID-19 and Vaccines Technical Guidance | IDPC, UK

Party lines divide support for drug consumption rooms

Health authorities recently announced a spike in drug overdose deaths, sparking a debate on effective tackling measures | YLE, Finland

Patients’ experiences of continued treatment with extended-release naltrexone: a Norwegian qualitative study

The opioid antagonist extended-release naltrexone (XR-NTX) in the treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD) is effective in terms of safety, abstinence from opioid use and retention in treatment. However, it is unclear how patients experience and adjust to losing the possibility of achieving an opioid effect. This qualitative study is the first to explore how people with opioid dependence experience XR-NTX treatment, focusing on the process of treatment over time | Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, USA

Assessment of Patterns in e-Cigarette Use Among Adults in the US, 2017-2020

 This study found a slight reduction in current e-cigarette use but consistent increases in daily e-cigarette use, suggesting greater nicotine dependence that warrants continued surveillance | JAMA Network Open, USA

Use of Electronic Cigarettes Among Cannabis-Naive Adolescents and Its Association With Future Cannabis Use

With the use of longitudinal data on a nationally representative cohort of 9828 youths from 2017 to 2019, this cohort study found that cannabis-naive adolescents who have used electronic cigarettes are significantly more likely to report cannabis use 1 year later compared with those who have not used electronic cigarettes | JAMA Network Open, USA

'Corrective' measures ordered, but Health Canada says 2nd MDMA trial can continue

Review conducted in response to complaint alleging patient safety issues and research flaws | CBC News, Canada

Yukon considers decriminalizing small quantities of drugs to address substance use emergency

Tracy-Anne McPhee, the territory's health minister, told CBC News it's one of several options the government is considering as its next steps to address the substance use emergency | CBC News, Canada

The power of a person-centered approach to harm reduction

Peer witnesses at Foxglove supportive housing use new technology and shared experience to reduce stigma and reframe conversations around substance use | Fraser Health, Canada

A growing number of Australians want to see health-based responses to drug use instead of jail time

Aaron Gilhooley was trying to turn his life around when a police officer told him he would never be anything but a drug addict | abc.net.au, Australia



Blogs, comment and opinion

Stewart Paterson: Words from Drug Deaths Taskforce won't save lives only serious action will

On the day the Drug Deaths Taskforce published its final report, like every other day in recent years, three people will likely have died in a drug-related death | Glasgow Evening Times opinion, UK

When rehab is not right

I saw an exchange on Twitter the other day that on first reading raised my eyebrows and created empathetic frustration. An individual was apparently being refused rehab because “he continued to use drugs”. Surely that’s the best reason for going to rehab. We don’t refuse treatment to diabetics because their diets are problematic, or because their symptoms are out of control. Indeed, we prioritise treatment in such cases | Recovery Review blog, UK

The White Paper on Drugs Policing: Unintended Consequences & the Need for a Whole System Approach

[Last] week, the government unleashed their much-awaited plan to tackle “recreational” drug use, with much of the rhetoric to-date centring around “middle-class cocaine users” and the need to implement “tough consequences” to tackle drug use | Politics.co.uk, UK

WHO concludes there’s “no place for cheap alcohol”

In late June 2022, World Health Organization Europe published a handbook on minimum pricing policies for alcohol. As described by one of the authors, the report is “everything you wanted to know about minimum pricing, in one place.” | BMJ Editorial, UK

Women, Alcohol, Pregnancy & FASD

This is the second blog of six where Professor Moira Plant shares highlights from her report to be published this summer | QNIS blog, UK

Gen Z for zero tolerance: why British youth are turning off booze

Alcohol consumption among 16- to 24-year-olds is falling. So what is behind this new temperance? | Guardian, UK

GP: Why are we waging a war on e-cigarettes when they help smokers quit?

Dr Garrett McGovern argues that banning e-cigarette flavours will increase smoking harm and death and will not protect young people | Journal, Ireland

Assessing the Association Between Electronic Cigarette Use Among Cannabis-Naive Adolescents and Future Cannabis Use—Overlapping Substances

Overlap among substances used by youths is a well-described phenomenon, and understanding the pathways across substances has been a subject of research for at least several decades, with the framework of understanding gateway models of progression from use of tobacco (as well as alcohol and cannabis) to use of other substances. Sun and colleagues examined a new type of early use of tobacco in the form of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), and they have examined whether its use is a risk factor for the subsequent onset of cannabis use | JAMA Network open commentary, USA


And finally...

'Cannabis' plants removed from Dorset village's display

Six suspicious plants have been removed from a parish council display after concerns were raised by a resident | BBC, UK