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Daily news - 17th June 2022


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UK news

Covid: Downers more popular than party drugs since pandemic

Drug users have switched from party drugs such as ecstasy to so-called "downers" since the pandemic, according to a top police officer | BBC, UK

Alcohol Services (Funding)

To ask the Scottish Government whether it plans to allocate any funding specifically for alcohol services, in addition to that allocated to alcohol and drug partnerships for drugs services | They work for you, UK

Addiction Treatment (Retention of Tenancies)

To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on its plans to allow people who are seeking treatment for addiction to retain their tenancies through continued housing payments | They work for you, UK

Belfast: Six homeless men die of drug overdoses in fortnight

One was Patrick McIlroy, a 27-year-old former mental health worker, who died on a Belfast street last Thursday. His cousin Martina McIlroy said her family was broken | BBC, UK

Families Awareness Week: Interview with John Taylor, Alcohol Stole My Mum

Wed, 22 June 2022, 14:00 – 15:00 BST. Join us during Families Awareness Week as we interview John Taylor, author of Alcohol Stole My Mum, along with Paolo Hewitt his co-writer | Adfam, UK

Submissions for the 2022 Recovery Street film festival are officially open!

We are inviting anyone who is directly or indirectly affected by drug and alcohol use to submit a film of between one to three minutes in length, themed around the question: "Who am I?" We want to know how your identity and place in the world has shaped your recovery, or the recovery of those in your life | Phoenix Futures, UK

Morrisons mistakenly lists £2.50 whisky

The retailer identified the pricing error on its website before any bottles were sold | Guardian, UK

Devon county lines drug searches lead to 40 arrests

Devon and Cornwall Police carried out "a significant number of searches" in Torquay, Paignton, Teignmouth and Newton Abbot on Tuesday and Wednesday | BBC, UK

Shop caught selling fake cigarettes down chute still open

A shop that sold bogus cigarettes from a flat by passing packets down a chute has remained open six months after losing its licence because the case has been held up in the courts | BBC, UK

 

International news

How HSBC laundered millions for Mexican drug lords

In 2012 the bank paid $1.9bn for its part in helping El Chapo's Sinaloa cartel to launder money. Why has no one taken the fall? | New Statesman, UK

Human Rights Violations against People who Use Drugs in sub-Saharan Africa

Jun 28, 2022 01:00 PM in Amsterdam, Berlin, Rome, Stockholm, Vienna. This webinar, led by the African Network of People who Use Drugs (AfricaNPUD) in coordination with INPUD... will highlight the growing movement for drug user rights within the region. During the event, a landmark report by AfricaNPUD on human rights violations during the time of COVID-19 will be launched with the goal of informing future drug-related laws and policies and enhancing and strengthening human rights education programmes in Africa | INPUD, UK

At least 22 lives saved by emergency overdose drug in three years

The HSE has estimated that at least 22 people's lives were saved over a three-year period thanks to receiving the emergency drug naloxone, which is used to treat those who have overdosed | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Mega-model predicts US opioid deaths will soon peak

The crisis is projected to claim more than half a million more lives from 2020 to 2032, although yearly deaths are on course to start falling before 2025 | Nature, USA

Challenges in Identifying Novel Psychoactive Substances and a Stronger Path Forward: The importance of non-targeted testing to keep pace with a rapidly evolving synthetic opioid market

The synthetic opioid market in the United States is constantly evolving. Once a new substance is identified, it may only be prevalent for three to six months before it’s replaced by something new and yet to be identified by forensic laboratories | NIJ, USA

Identification of a novel opioid, N-piperidinyl etonitazene (etonitazepipne), in patients with suspected opioid overdose

Novel opioids in the illicit drug supply, such as the “nitazene” group of synthetic opioids, present an ongoing public health problem due to high potency and respiratory depressant effects. We describe three patients in whom N-piperidinyl etonitazene, a compound not previously reported in human exposure, was detected after suspected opioid overdose | Clinical Toxicology, USA

Access to safer supply to reduce overdose rapidly increased during COVID-19: Canadian study

The number of programs and prescribers offering safer supply to reduce risk of overdose increased dramatically in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study looking at services across Canada | Medical Xpress, Canada

Toronto man charged with manslaughter in 2020 London heroin overdose death: police

London, Ont. police have charged a 28-year-old Toronto man with manslaughter in connection with the heroin overdose death of a woman in the city in late 2020 | Global News, Canada

Push to allow medicinal cannabis users the right to drive

The same medication that helped Maggie Gentle get her life back is also stopping her from living it | Brisbane Times, Australia

 

Blogs, comment and opinion

Key tobacco control report focuses on children

Javed Khan’s report on tobacco control policy, published on 9 June 2022, will inform the forthcoming tobacco control plan for England. The government’s ambition is to reduce smoking prevalence to below 5% by 2030, but like others, Khan estimates this target will not be met with the current trajectory | BMJ editorial, UK

What do we know about the alcohol industry’s engagement with youth alcohol education?

School years are a time when young people begin to understand their place in the world and develop values, norms, beliefs, and knowledge. For decades, harmful industries, such as the lead, tobacco, fossil fuel and food industries, have engaged with the funding, promotion, and delivery of education programmes and resources to children and young people in schools | IAS blog, UK

Joanna Scanlan: ‘I have called myself an alcoholic at times’

[Possible paywall] The Bafta-winning actress has kept her own story of depression under wraps, but now she opens up about her darkest days... | Telegraph, UK

The Recovery Alliance Initiative

This is the first post in a series within which I will provide an overview and history of the Recovery Alliance Initiative | Recovery Review blog, USA

Points Interview: Wolfgang Sachsenröder

Today’s post features an interview with Dr Wolfgang Sachsenröder, in which he discusses his latest book, From Opium to Methamphetamines: The Nine Lives of the Drug Industry in Southeast Asia‘ (World Scientific, 2022), and shares some personal reflections. Sachsenröder holds a PhDin Political Science and Public Law from the University of Bonn, Germany, and is an expert in Southeast Asian studies | Points blog, USA