Daily news - 13th April 2021

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UK news

Examination of the links between parental conflict and substance misuse and the impacts on children’s outcomes

This report is a literature review examining the links between parental conflict and substance misuse and the impacts on children’s outcomes | DWP, UK

Awakn launches Digital unit and signs agreement with the University of Exeter

Awakn Life Sciences Inc. launched ‘Awakn Digital’, a new unit focused on using advanced analytics to improve the effectiveness of Psychedelic–Assisted Psychotherapy in treating Addiction. Awakn deepened its partnership with the University of Exeter to apply the latest developments in digital, technology and innovation in healthcare to tackle addiction | Awakn, UK

Landmark report calls for stop-and-search filming

Police officers should switch on body-worn cameras whenever they think they might need to stop and search someone, in order to help rebuild trust in the community... | Law Society Gazette, UK

Durham pub beer garden's beach huts 'break Covid rules'

A pub landlord has been told beach huts installed in his beer garden cannot be used by customers as they are deemed indoor facilities under Covid-19 rules | BBC, UK

DRNS & TPS: Virtual Roundtable - Involving Practitioners in Research

Thu, 6 May 2021, 13:30 – 15:00 BST. DRNS & Turning Point Scotland Virtual Roundtable: Involving Practitioners in Research | DRNS, UK



International news

Taking stock of half a decade of drug policy - An evaluation of UNGASS implementation

April 2021 marks the five-year anniversary of the 2016 United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on drugs. This report aims to take stock of progress made on the implementation of the operational recommendations included in the UNGASS Outcome Document | IDPC, UK

CND64 Side Event - Impacts of COVID-19 on the drug market

Fri, 16 April 2021, 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM BST. CND64 Side Event - Impacts of COVID-19 on the drug market: A multi-country multi-study analysis | IDPC, UK

Drug Decriminalisation: Progress or Political Red Herring?

This report, like our previous report on Portugal, is intended to open up the debate on decriminalisation and make clear the expectations people who use drugs have for future action on drug policy reform. Most importantly, it includes a call for full decriminalisation without sanctions as the new baseline for measuring progress on decriminalisation in the future | INPUD, UK

American faces jail in Dubai after smoking cannabis legally in the US

Under the United Arab Emirates’ laws, even having trace amounts of a drug in one’s system is enough to warrant a drug possession charge | Independent, UK

European Union Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment

Close to 40% of the criminal networks active in the EU are involved in the trade in illegal drugs | Europol, The Netherlands

Commissioner Johansson acknowledges value of EMCDDA analysis in informing drug policy

European Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansson paid her first visit to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) today during a day of events relating to the fight against organised crime. EMCDDA Director Alexis Goosdeel welcomed the Commissioner to the agency for talks on its current priorities and challenges | EMCDDA, Portugal

Early cannabis use linked to heart disease

Smoking cannabis when you're young may increase your risk of developing heart disease later, according to a recent University of Guelph study | EurekAlert, USA

Questions still surround cannabis use and public health

Public attitudes about legalizing the use of cannabis have changed dramatically over the last 30 years. Recent national polling suggests that roughly two-thirds of Americans favor legalizing cannabis for adult use, while even more support legalizing it for medical use | AMA, USA

A systematic review of randomized controlled trials and network meta-analysis of e-cigarettes for smoking cessation

This review aims to compare the effectiveness of nicotine e-cigarettes for smoking cessation with licensed nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) and nicotine-free based control conditions by using network meta-analysis (NMA) | Pub Med, USA

Experts review new studies on cardiovascular effects of cigarette smoking versus electronic cigarettes

Electronic cigarette (EC) use, or vaping, has both gained incredible popularity and generated tremendous controversy, but although they may be less harmful than tobacco cigarettes (TCs), they have major potential risks that may be underestimated by health authorities, the public, and medical professionals | News Medical, USA

E-cigarettes with a cigarette-like level of nicotine are effective in reducing smoking

E-cigarettes that deliver a cigarette-like amount of nicotine are associated with reduced smoking and reduced exposure to the major tobacco-related pulmonary carcinogen, NNAL, even with concurrent smoking, according to a new study | Medical Xpress, USA

This Heroin-Using Professor Wants to Change How We Think About Drugs

Prof. Carl Hart saw drugs as destroyers of communities. Then he saw the positive side. “We have miseducated the public,” he said | NYTimes, USA

New Mexico just legalized marijuana

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Monday signed a marijuana legalization bill into law, making her state the 17th in the country to legalize marijuana | Vox, USA

Bloomberg Anti-Nicotine Lobby Among US Backers of Duterte’s Drug War

He thought it was a clap of thunder as it echoed through the humid air between the river and mountains that surrounded him. But it was a shotgun blast, and it tore through his spine | Filter Magazine, USA

Doctors still reluctant to prescribe medical cannabis: McMaster

Main concerns relate to possible ill-effects and a lack of understanding regarding their effectiveness as painkillers | EurekAlert, USA

'It’s a scary thing': People still fear calling 911 to report an overdose

With significant increases in overdose deaths since the start of the pandemic more than a year ago, protection from prosecution for people who use drugs is more necessary than ever, says Ryerson criminology professor | New Market Today, Canada

New research reveals how long it takes for cannabis impairment to subside

The findings, researchers and advocates say, strengthen the case for changes to drug-driving laws in much of Australia | abc.net.au, Australia

‘Terrible heartache’: Soaring wait times for drug and alcohol treatment during pandemic

Wait times to access drug and alcohol treatment services have soared in Victoria during the coronavirus pandemic, spurred by new groups with addiction issues and a surge in the number of people seeking help for alcohol withdrawal | The Age, Australia



Blogs, comment and opinion

Reducing youth crime and exploitation in Bristol

Case Study : Safer Options is Bristol’s multi-agency partnership response to youth violence, county lines, drug dealing, and children and young people exploited for criminal activities | Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, UK

Anyone’s Child meets Daniel Ahmed

Early this year we headed to Middlesbrough to meet the pioneering and inspirational Daniel Ahmed who has led the way in setting up a Heroin Assisted Treatment clinic in Middlesbrough (the North East currently record the highest levels of drug related deaths in England) | Anyone's Child, UK

Let’s end this farce by legalising cannabis

[Free one month trial available] Our laws on soft drugs alienate young people and undermine policing and a crackdown by ministers is doomed to fail | The Times, UK

Harm Reduction in the U.S. – A Sea Change is Underway

Some time ago I wrote an opinion piece titled: Dirty Words: Smoker, Vaper, Harm Reductionist? In the article I expressed my frustration that in government and NGO leadership circles publicly embracing harm reduction policy in the U.S. was still politically dangerous. Unfortunately, demonization of smokers, vapers or clean needle exchange programs is more likely to resonate with the public than nuanced discussions of proportional risk or the benefits of tobacco harm reduction strategies | NSP blog, UK

Is addiction caused by genetic or environmental factors?

I’ve been involved in some recent discussions about addiction as a disease and the role of experiences like trauma | Recovery Review blog, UK

Cuthand: Harm reduction sites needed in Saskatchewan

People don’t just wake up one morning and decide that they will become drug addicts | The Star Phoenix, Canada