DS Daily - 27th August 2009


Drug Related Deaths in the UK Annual Report 2009

An annual report which analyses drug-related deaths that have occurred in the preceding calendar year and comments on emerging trends. An executive summary of the annual report is also published [International Centre for Drug Policy St George's, London University, UK]

Drug poisoning deaths at eight-year high

The figures for deaths where selected substances were mentioned on the death certificate show that almost a third were linked to heroin or morphine [Office for National Statistics, UK]

Sharp rise in fatal cocaine and heroin overdoses, discloses ONS

Punitive policy failing, says Lib Dem health spokesman, as 'horrifying statistics' reveal big increase in older victims [Guardian, UK]

Drug-related death rates rise by 34% in Scotland

Drug-related deaths have hit a record high in Scotland with fatalities rising by one-third last year and Dumbarton named as having the second-highest death rate in the UK [The Herald, Scotland, UK]

Female drug deaths 'rise by 17%'

The number of women dying drug-related deaths in England and Wales rose by 17% in 2008 to 853, according to the Office for National Statistics [BBC, UK]

Cannabis factory figures released

West Yorkshire Police have uncovered more than 360 cannabis factories in 12 months [BBC, UK]

Video - Drugs, Prison & Recovery revisited

Prison turning offenders into drug addicts - Illegal drugs are so widespread in prison that more inmates are leaving with an addiction to a substance than when they initially arrived [Inexcess TV, UK]

Real Help for Communities: Volunteers, Charities and Social Enterprises

An action plan outlining £42.5 million support for the third sector in the difficult economic climate. 40-page PDF [Cabinet Office, UK]

Rising alcohol strength makes even a tipple on the sofa risky

Relaxing at home with a glass or two of wine each night could amount to drinking more than is good for your health because of the increasing strength of alcoholic drinks, a report suggests [Times, UK]

Alcohol Awareness Week in England and Wales

Alcohol Awareness Week 2009 Stakeholder Information Pack. A guide to getting involved [NHS via the Alcohol Learning Centre, UK]

A Heroin User in Stockholm

Watch our new video and take action - urge the Swedish government to provide access to needle exchange in Stockholm NOW! [DRUG Reporter, Hungary]

Groups in other cities eye ruling on safe-injection site

As the group behind Vancouver's InSite waits to hear the results of a B.C. Court of Appeal ruling that will decide the facility's fate, researchers are trying to determine whether a similar initiative could help deal with urban drug-use problems in Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa [Globe and Mail, Canada]

National Survey of American Attitudes on Substance Abuse XIV: Teens and Parents

This 14th annual “back-to-school survey” continues the unique effort of The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University to track attitudes of teens and those, like parents, who influence them. 67-page PDF [CASA, USA]

Latin America Weighs Less Punitive Path to Curb Drug Use

In February, a commission led by three former Latin American presidents issued a scathing report that condemned Washington’s “war on drugs” as a failure and urged the region to adopt drug policies found in some European countries that focus more on treatment than punishment [New York Times, USA]

Mexico, California are laboratories for new approach

Is it capitulation when Mexico, which faces an existential threat from drug cartels, decides to decriminalize drugs? [The Arizona Republic]

Mental health services in Australia 2006-07

Mental health services in Australia 2006-07 is the eleventh in the series of AIHW's comprehensive annual reports on the characteristics and activity of Australia's mental health services, and the availability of mental health resources [AIHW, Australia]

'She preferred to die rather than face the firing squad'

Edith was on death row in Indonesia for a drug offence, and in 2007 was the lead plaintiff in an unsuccessful case before the Indonesian Constititional Court challenging the legality of the death penalty for drug offences [IHRA]

Letter from UNODC and UNAIDS Secretariat

On the 21st August 2009, UNODC and UNAIDS circulated the following letter to clarify their common understanding of harm reduction initiatives [IDPC]