Daily news - 20th April 2021

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UK news

Sex, drugs and rock’n’roll’? Link between taking illegal drugs and non-traditional sex found

People who take mulitple illicit drugs are significantly more likely to engage in non-traditional sexual activities such as sex with a friend or stranger, anal sex and BDSM, according to a UK study by academics from the University of Roehampton, The University of Liverpool and Bournemouth University | University of Liverpool, UK

Covid: North East alcohol consumption 'a tsunami of harm', campaigner fears

A "tsunami of harm" could hit the North East in terms of alcohol consumption during the Covid-19 pandemic, an outgoing health campaigner fears | BBC, UK

'I perceive it to be less harmful, I have no idea if it is or not:' a qualitative exploration of the harm perceptions of IQOS among adult users

IQOS was introduced to the UK in 2016, and there is little independent qualitative research on IQOS harm perceptions. This study explored the perceived health harms of IQOS to users and those exposed to the emissions, what shapes these perceptions, and what participants wanted to know about the harms of IQOS | Harm Reduction Journal, UK

Plymouth Vaping Experiment

This experiment came about because we wanted to try something different with a group of people traditionally characterised by public services as “entrenched” and “hard to reach”. We saw the emergence of vaping as an ideal opportunity to challenge these characterisations and learn more about how people respond to bespoke approaches to prevention and harm reduction | Next Stage Radicals, UK

Drug and alcohol charity launches new service for homeless in Luton

A drug and alcohol charity has launched a new service to help Luton's homeless as part of a nationwide initiative | Luton Today, UK

Experts and people with drug harm experience unite to create new app aimed at saving lives

A new app has been launched in a bid to help reduce drug-related harm and deaths in the Highlands | Ross-shire Journal, UK

CBD products linked to novel food applications

[Upadted] The list of CBD food products on sale in England and Wales which we advise should be allowed to stay on the market until a decision on their authorisation has been made | Food Standards Agency, UK

The Alcohol 'Problem' Podcast - podcast

In this episode I talk to Chelsey (CJ) Flood, a  novelist, lecturer, and the creator of Beautiful Hangover, a blog/community about alcohol and recovery | Alcohol podcats, UK

Julie Multiple Sclerosis -video

To kick-start #MSWeek here's Julie story. She suffers from MS, and tried many treatments before she discovered #ProjectTwenty21 | DrugScience, UK

Scotland lost 210 million pints of beer and 200 pubs during lockdown industry tells MPs

MPs on the Commons Scottish Affairs committee heard how coronavirus restrictions devastated industry in the last year | Daily Record, UK

Behind The Scenes | Student Life & Drugs

Wed, 28 April 2021, 19:00 – 20:00 BST. In this Behind the Scenes webinar, we will be taking an in-depth look into students' relationship with drugs and alcohol | Bristol Drugs Project, UK

Launch Event: Alliance On Drugs Policy, Business and Racial Justice

Thu, April 29, 2021, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM BST. Launch Event: New Black Centred Alliance On Drugs Policy, Business and Racial Justice | BLAKSOX and Transform, UK


International news

Biden ‘to slash amount of nicotine in cigarettes’

White House also considering ban on menthol cigarettes | Independent, UK

Europe's appetite for cocaine triggers brutal battle for lucrative routes through Venezuela

[Limited number of free articles per week] Thousands of Venezuelans are fleeing to Colombia amid a bloody and destabilising battle for control of the drugs route | Telegraph, UK

'Don’t start asking me for Benzos': Homeless people detail interactions with medics

Homeless patients have said they feel either excluded or discouraged from attending health services and medics have described difficult interactions with some homeless clients, including being lied to over prescription drugs or fearing violence if they refuse to provide certain medication | Irish Examiner, Ireland

South Western Regional Drug & Alcohol Task Force: Invitation to Tender

Development of 5-year Strategic Service Development Plan (2022 – 2026) for Hope Cottage Family Support Service Kildare West Wicklow | ActiveLink, Ireland

A Sustainable Future for Cannabis Farmers

Learn how lessening the barriers for small farmers while raising them for large companies can help to steer legal cannabis markets in a more sustainable and equitable direction based on principles of community empowerment, social justice, fair(er) trade and sustainable development | TNI, The Netherlands

Macron calls for change in law after killer of French Jewish woman avoids trial

After a man who killed his Jewish neighbor successfully pled that he was unfit to stand trial because of what a court called a marijuana-induced psychotic episode, French President Emmanuel Macron is calling for a change in his country’s legal system | JTA, USA

Global street drug supply and its effects on high-risk groups for COVID-19

The composition of the street drugs heroin and cocaine has dramatically changed at alarming speeds across the globe. No longer are these street drugs cut with benign materials such as lactose but now cut with up to 17 or more pharmaceutically active and potentially toxic adulterants | EurekAlert, USA

YouGov Study: 25% Of Americans Now Consume Cannabis, Use Grew 56% Since 2018

One in four adults in the United States currently consume cannabis – or have tried some form of it in the last twelve months | Forbes, USA

The House Just Voted To Let Marijuana Businesses Use Banks. Again

On the eve of "4/20," the House of Representatives gave broad bipartisan support to a bill that would finally allow state-legal marijuana businesses to access banking services | Reason, USA

Cellular impact of 'Heat not Burn' products may be no less harmful than cigarettes

The impact on lung cells of Heat not Burn products—a hybrid between traditional cigarettes and electronic vaping devices—may be no less harmful than that of conventional cigarettes, suggest the findings of a small comparative study, published online in the journal Thorax | Medical Xpress, USA

Tobacco giant Philip Morris sees a future without cigarettes — but there’s a catch

The maker of Marlboro and other cigarette brands has a new mission: getting the world’s 1 billion smokers to quit smoking | LA Times, USA

Court Blasts Drug-Maker Endo For Trying To 'Improperly Corrupt' Opioid Trial

A state court in Tennessee has punished Endo Pharmaceuticals for improperly withholding a vast trove of documents relating to the sale and marketing of its opioid medication Opana ER | npr, USA

Legalizing Opioids: Three Proposed Models for Non-Medical Use

A rarity among academic papers, a new piece of research proposes models for legalizing opioids for non-medical use. A glut of research already surrounds the benefits of decriminalization and medicalized safe supply | Filter Magazine, USA

USPS Might Soon Exempt Some Vape Businesses From “Mail Ban”

On April 19, the United States Postal Service (USPS) offered new guidance for vape businesses ahead of a rule that would make it difficult for their products to be shipped by mail to consumers | Filter Magazine, USA

Startup Combines Cash Rewards And Therapy In An App To Fight Meth Addiction

It doesn’t get that much attention, but the methamphetamine epidemic in the U.S. is startlingly widespread and lethal. The number of overdose deaths involving meth increased 7.5 times from 2007 to 2017, according to the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse | Forbes, USA

In Canada, psychedelics re-emerge in treatment of depression

To manage her stress and fears, Andrea Bird—who is suffering from terminal cancer—uses psychedelics, which are seeing a sudden re-emergence in Canada as a possible treatment for mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression | Medical Xpress, Canada

Pregabalin use among a sample of people who inject drugs in Canberra, ACT

Pregabalin is a drug that is prescribed in Australia for the treatment of neuropathic pain. There have been increasing reports of extra-medical use of pregabalin and dependence | NDARC, Australia

A short history of Australian AOD communication guidelines

[Updated] In 2007, the Australian Press Council (APC) teamed up with the now-defunct Australian National Council on Drugs (ANCD) to circulate their combined guidelines amongst journalists reporting on alcohol and other drugs (AOD) | AOD MediaWatch, Australia

Grant Program: Information and Support (ISS) for Family and Friends

The ADF has recently completed a review of information and support offerings for families and friends of people who use AOD. The new ISS Grants Program is designed to demonstrate the impact of work, or new initiatives, to help build a strong evidence base that will lead to better outcomes for families and friends | ADF, Australia



Blogs, comment and opinion

The Trip Report 19/04

Through the work of organisations such as WEDINOS, The Loop, and SaferParty, we know a little more about the drugs in circulation. The report provided below is a summary of their findings over the last week | Cameron Scally, UK

Why your social media habit is probably not an addiction – new research

Social media apps are useful sources of information. They help us catch up with the activities of friends, news, current affairs, government COVID updates and the latest happenings in celebrity and sport | Conversation, UK

Biden takes a reformist drug strategy, but the challenge of supply countries remains

On April 1, the  Biden administration released a statement of drug policy priorities for its first year. There is much to like: To an unprecedented degree, the strategy embraces much of what the drug policy reform community has been recommending for decades | Brookings blog, USA