Daily news - 28th July 2017

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UK news

Treating Scotland's changing drug problem

Public Health Minister Aileen Campbell has announced a refresh of Scotland’s drug strategy, to respond to the changing nature of Scotland’s drug problem | Scottish Government, UK

Drug Consumption Rooms Are No Longer Outside Of The Law

In a landmark decision, the Government has announced that they would not step in the way of a drug consumption room being introduced, if a Local Authority decided it would best meet the needs of their local population | Volte Face, UK

Steroids see four-fold increase, data shows, fuelled by rise in muscle-conscious young men

Steroids are the only drug in the UK to have seen a four-fold increase in the past year, official data shows, fuelled by a rise in muscle-conscious young men | Telegraph, UK

Drinking a few times a week 'reduces diabetes risk'

People who drink three to four times a week are less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who never drink, Danish researchers suggest | BBC, UK

The Weird Stuff Discovered in the Drugs at Secret Garden Party

We spoke to Fiona Measham from drug testing organisation The Loop about what they uncovered at this year's festival | VICE, UK

More than 70 prisoners released by mistake in 2016-17 amid violence surge

Official figures reveal a record 71 convicted criminals or suspects were mistakenly freed in England and Wales | Guardian, UK

University of Leicester researchers receive funding to explore vaping among adolescents

A research team led by the University of Leicester will be exploring how young people use e-cigarettes or 'vape' as part of a new project funded by Cancer Research UK | News Medical, UK

Recovery Street Film Festival – film submission extension!

The deadline for submissions for 3 minutes films to the Recovery Street Film Festival competition has been extended to 7th August | Action on Addiction, UK

Mike Ashley wins high court battle over '£15m pub deal'

Investment banker Jeffrey Blue loses claim against Sports Direct and Newcastle United owner over deal allegedly made in pub | Guardian, UK

Ringleader of 10-man drug gang told to pay back £1m

The ringleader of a gang that supplied cocaine, cannabis, amphetamine and MDMA across the south of England has been ordered to pay £1m by a court | BBC, UK

Drugs gang jailed for £26m conspiracy in Kent and Norfolk

Members of a drugs gang who grew cannabis worth more than £26m have been jailed | BBC, UK

'UK's largest cannabis operation' discovered - video

This is what one of the UK's largest illegal cannabis farms looks like, according to police | BBC, UK


International news

Free certification for US cannabis labs to help fight opioid epidemic

Ensuring that America’s medical marijuana is reliable and of high quality will help patients and drive down opioid use in the country, according to Americans for Safe Access | Chemistry World, UK

Iran plans to decriminalise drug use allowing government to give diluted drugs to addicts

Proposal aims to cut relationship between drug addicts and drug traffickers | Independent, UK

Wastewater drug tests: Chaos as Tasmania denies opting out of national program

Federal agencies and TasWater trade blows over whether the state is providing water samples that can be tested for illegal drugs | Guardian, UK

New Report shows that Opioid Misuse Increases among Older Adults

A new spotlight report by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) indicates that opioid misuse among adults aged 50 or older in 2014 was higher than 2002. The misuse of opioids includes either the use of heroin or the nonmedical use of prescription pain relievers | SAMSHA, USA

Americans are quitting smoking in higher numbers

In the United States, the smoking cessation rate increased for the first time in 15 years, found a population-level analysis of national surveys conducted from 2001 to 2015. The study suggests e-cigarettes helped users of the electronic devices to quit smoking traditional cigarettes | Science Daily, USA

How do people decide: Should I go, stay, drink?

Many studies of alcohol use disorders (AUDs) use tasks that involve monetary rewards or losses to examine individual decision-making vis-à-vis alcohol and other substance use. Yet drinking typically occurs in specific social and incentive contexts that do not involve economic decision-making | Science Daily, USA

Binge drinking down among young adults in college, up among those who are not

After years of increasing rates of binge drinking, alcohol-impaired driving, and alcohol-related mortality among emerging adults ages 18 to 24, the numbers are finally starting to come down among college students in that age group, according to a study in the July issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs | Medical Xpress, USA

Developing and Implementing Municipal Alcohol Policies

A municipal alcohol policy (MAP) outlines the appropriate use of alcohol at an event or venue owned or managed by a municipality, and can be a key tool for building a community culture of moderation towards alcohol. A MAP aligns with provincial/territorial liquor laws and applies to community venues such as sporting events and festivals, parks and beaches, community centres and arenas | CCSA, Canada

IDRS Drug Trends Bulletin July 2017: Is the wellbeing of people who inject drugs worse for those who use methamphetamines rather than heroin?

The harms associated with injection of opioids are well documented, but few reports consider the differences in health experienced by those who also inject crystal methamphetamine or ice | NDARC, Australia

Auckland police investigate ninth death linked to synthetic cannabis

A 31-year-old woman found dead at a west Auckland address was believed to have been smoking synthetic cannabis, police say | Stuff.co.nz, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Revealed: the latest drug use figures and what they tell us about changing habits

Every year, the UK Home Office invites a sample of 50,000 people to tell them whether they have used any illicit drugs. Although you might wonder why anyone would willingly share this type of information, most people agree to take part. The survey helps us to understand the trends in UK drug use and informs policy and service planning | Conversation, UK

4 Things I learned at the Secret Garden Party

Last week (20th - 23rd July 2017) I spent four days at Secret Garden Party raising awareness for Transform and Anyone’s Child | Transform Blog, UK