Daily news - 3rd November 2017

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UK news

Smoking, Drinking and Drug Use Among Young People in England - 2016

This report contains results from an annual survey of secondary school pupils in England in years 7 to 11 (mostly aged 11 to 15). 12,051 pupils in 177 schools completed questionnaires in the autumn term of 2016 | NHS Digital, UK

Drug use more likely than smoking among secondary school pupils

NHS survey finds 19% of youngsters aged 11-15 in England have smoked, 24% have taken drugs and 44% have drunk alcohol | Guardian, UK

One in seven GPs 'turning to drink or drugs to cope with work stress'

One in seven GPs is turning to drink or drugs to help them “deal with work pressures” a new survey suggests. The poll of family doctors found almost half said their ability to care for patients had been affected by the stress of their job | Telegraph, UK

Creating a lifesaving treatment and harm reduction system

Online course moves on to the whole-system level, where treatment and harm reduction services working in synergy are the best hope for reversing the hepatitis C epidemic - but can any feasible system succeed in this daunting task? Explore whether methadone programmes should be spread thin and wide to extend harm reduction benefits, or deepened with recovery-oriented support | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Addicts should be able to take banned substances without fear of prosecution in 'drug consumption rooms', says MP

Caroline Lucas argues creation of spaces where addicts can legally inject or inhale illicit substances would help reduce drug-related harm across UK | Independent, UK

Dentists 'should dole out diet tips and advice on alcohol intake' 

Dentists should give patients advice about eating more healthily and cutting down an alcohol, while they are carrying out a check-up, a new report suggests | Telegraph, UK

Booze Really Does Make You Crave Cocaine, Finds Study

Do you have a taste for £50 bags of teething powder cut with cocaine? Do you keep blowing your pay-cheque on blow? Well, it might be your functioning alcoholism that's fuelling your expensive cocaine habit | VICE, UK

Pets could be harmed by owner's cigarette smoke

Could cigarette smoke be harmful to our pets? Well a new campaign - launched this week - is aiming to raise awareness of the possible problems it could cause | BBC Newsbeat, UK


International news

Italian court rules its 'okay for Rastafarians to smoke marijuana when meditating'

Lawyer successfully argues cannabis regarded as sacred to religion | Independent, UK

Experts and public disagree over plan to drug-test welfare recipients – polls

Newspoll shows majority voter support for government’s plan, while survey of drug and alcohol workers reveals most oppose | Guardian, UK

No cheer in the dangers of teenage drinking

Parents and front-line services dread the binge boozing of October 31, but we are all culpable in subtly encouraging the young to partake, says psychotherapist Richard Hogan | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Migrants, refugees and asylum seekers

Europe has a long history of migration and the diversity of its ethnicities and religions creates complex links between ethnicity and drug use | EMCCDA, Portugal

New developments in cannabis regulation

As more jurisdictions contemplate and pass laws to legalise cannabis for medical and non-medical purposes, the discussions about cannabis policy will likely become more intense in the EU. Member States can learn from these experiences and decide if they want to maintain their current cannabis supply policies or try something else | EMCDDA, Portugal

This drug could block harmful impact of teen binge drinking

Researchers studying the importance of the brain's immune system in our desire to drink alcohol have made a discovery that may eventually help to switch off binge-drinking behavior in adults who used to binge during their adolescent years | Science Daily, USA

California's marijuana industry gets its first insurer

Since last year, Californians are allowed to grow and possess marijuana. Now, the most populous U.S. state has taken another step to bolster the cannabis business by deciding to give insurance cover to the multi-billion dollar industry | Reuters, USA

Ontario cannabis law would punish homeless recreational weed users

Ontario tabled its law on cannabis legalization this week that would ban users from consuming the drug outside of “private residences,” a move slammed by critics as favouring “the elite” since homeless people, and many renters and condo residents could effectively be prohibited from consuming legal weed | VICE, Canada

Five Australians arrested over $200 million ice and cocaine bust

Australian-based crime syndicates are increasingly taking the lead role in importing massive shipments of drugs into the country after sourcing the substances from cartels through Central and South America | SMH, Australia



Blogs, comment and opinion

Nitrous oxide canisters for food use: not a "medicinal product"

In an important judgment handed down today by the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division)(England and Wales) – R v Chapman and others [2017] EWCA Crim 319 – the Court held that canisters of nitrous oxide (“nox”, or N2O) designed and intended for food use and not for a medicinal purpose, are not “medicinal products” (within the meaning of the Human Medicines Regulations 2012) for the purposes of the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 | Rudi Fortson blog, UK

How alcohol and drug treatment helps to reduce crime

There is a well-established and complex link between drugs, alcohol and crime, and in the recent years there has been a particular emphasis on the links between drug misuse and offending | PHE blog, UK

Drug consumption rooms can help reduce the harm caused by addiction

These 'rooms' are safe and supervised places where people who are drug dependent can inject or inhale illicit substances without fear of prosecution, and they could be saving lives right now | Independent, UK

The low-hanging fruit on the Brexit tree: repeal the Tobacco Products Directive

Disentangling ourselves from the EU after four decades will be fiendishly complicated but some elements of Brexit are refreshingly simple and uncontroversial. The recently enforced EU regulations on e-cigarettes are a case in point | IEA blog, UK