DS Daily - 18th September 2009


Project Blueprint: 'Not sufficiently robust'

Quietly, without press release or even a statement, two weeks ago ministers published a long and eagerly-awaited evaluation of drugs education in schools ... Why, one might ask, did they not want to trumpet the conclusion of a major research project which took six years of work and close to £6m of our money? ... The answer is that the science had been so bungled that the research was almost useless [Mark Easton's Blog, BBC, UK]

Break the law nicely, please

A new government advertising campaign, which advises people not to drive while under the influence of drugs, is surely something of a watershed. If any other public information film has quite so blatantly exhorted people that if they are going to break the law, then please could they do it responsibly, then sadly I missed it [Guardian, UK]

Biggest ever heroin seizure at Heathrow

UK Border Agency officers at Heathrow Airport have made what's thought to be their biggest ever seizure of heroin, and sparked an investigation into an international drugs gang [NDS, UK]

Unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections...a sobering thought?

Alcohol is commonly seen as a factor in not using a condom with a new partner, regretting sexual activity and having sex with someone who would not normally be found attractive [Family Planning Association, UK]

BBPA comments on shelving of pub ‘mandatory code’

This is in no small measure due to the active and intensive lobbying we have pursued [British Beer & Pub Association, UK]

Cigarettes and alcohol will take 10 years off your life

40-year survey of 19,000 men reveals benefits of healthy living in middle-age [Independent, UK]

Binge-drinking lowers resistance to infections

Drinking large amounts of alcohol in a short time inhibits the production of signalling molecules that are vital to the immune system [The Herald, Scotland, UK]


After filming themselves smoking hallucination-inducing salvia leaves, hundreds of young people then post the disturbing footage online [Sun, UK]

Disappointment with drug court programme

The Secretary General of the Department of Justice has said he is disappointed with the Dublin Drug Treatment Court Programme [RTE, Ireland]

Real IRA threatens to kill Cork drug dealers

Detectives said yesterday that they are taking the vigilante threat issued by the Real IRA seriously after men dressed in dark clothing visited pubs in Passage, Rochestown, Ballyphehane and Togher on Cork’s southside, and Mayfield on Cork’s northside, and distributed the leaflets [Irish Times]

Drug-free prisons would require 'cruel system'

Drug-free prisons would be impossible in a humane prison system, the secretary general of the Department of Justice has said. Seán Aylward, a former director of the Irish Prison Service, also said he was “disappointed” with the Drug Court scheme and it was likely to be wound up [Irish Times]

Drug-free prisons not possible, says official

Department of Justice secretary general Sean Aylward told the Public Accounts Committee that it was not possible to completely eliminate drugs from prisons unless visitors were banned, prisoners were kept in complete isolation and exercise yards were covered by roofs instead of fresh air [Independent.ie, Ireland]

Needles a part of health care

Needle exchanges serve a significant public health purpose. They reduce costly illnesses such as HIV and hepatitis and offer a chance to link drug users with supports and services that can help them stabilize often chaotic lives and even lead to treatment [Times Colonist, Canada]

National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day

Statement of Anthony S. Fauci, M.D. Director, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Richard J. Hodes, M.D., Director, National Institute on Aging and Jack Whitescarver, Ph.D. Director, NIH Office of AIDS Research, National Institutes of Health on National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day September 18, 2009 [NIH, USA]

Heroin floods streets of Melbourne

More Melburnians are overdosing on heroin despite police efforts to crush illegal drug imports [Herald Sun, Australia]

Addicts opens another front in Afghan war

Afghanistan, besieged by decades of war, is fighting another battle — a spiraling epidemic of heroin addiction in the country that is the world's largest producer of opium [USA Today]