Daily news - 9th August 2021

Weekly subscribe button

UK news

Raising legal age for buying cigarettes to 21 being looked at by UK health officials

Plans to raise the legal age of buying tobacco to 21 and a ban flavoured E-cigarettes have been looked at by health officials, the Mirror has learned | Mirror, UK

A ‘Recipe for Disaster’: The UK Is Opening Up, and the Party Drug Deaths Have Begun

There are fresh warnings over drug safety as 18-year-olds head to clubs for the first time ever after COVID restrictions in England eased | VICE, UK

“The reality is that people take drugs”: What’s next for club safety?

Following two tragic drug deaths, THE FACE talks to ravers and campaigners who want a radical change in policy across UK nightlife | The Face, UK

Alternatives to Prohibition with Dr Sheila Vakharia and Prof Alex Stevens

This week’s episode features Doctor Sheila Vakharia and Professor Alex Stevens, together with Professor Nutt they will be talking about decriminalization and drug policies in the US and the UK. Has both countries’ drug policies arisen from colonialism and social class hierarchy? What are the consequences of the policies that can be witnessed today? Are there any reasons for drug criminalisation? | Drug Science, UK

Head of Comms Ant Lehane debates alternative approaches to drugs with Peter Hitchens live on GB News - video

Head of Comms Ant Lehane debates alternative approaches to drugs with Peter Hitchens live on GB News | GBN, UK

PTSD, emotional regulation and substance use: the SSA talks to Alice Bowen

“The project looks at the role of emotional regulation in adults with substance use disorder, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and experience of interpersonal violence. Rates of interpersonal violence – that includes emotional, physical or sexual violence in childhood or adulthood – and rates of PTSD are high among people with substance use disorder..." | SSA, UK

Recruitment for an upcoming trial - Psilocybin as a Treatment for Anorexia Nervosa: A Pilot Study

Anorexia nervosa is the most fatal of all psychiatric conditions. With the current paucity of effective pharmacological and psychological treatments, and fewer than half of those diagnosed making a full recovery, there is a great need for new treatment avenues to be explored. For this study, we will recruit patients who have been suffering from a DSM-V diagnosis of anorexia nervosa for 3 years or more, and who have found other forms of treatment ineffective | Imperial College London, UK

Homeless heroin addict turning his life around after getting a flat of his own

"It's like waking up from a dream, it's like I fell asleep when I was 18 and I've woken up at 42." | Liverpool Echo, UK

Britain to Deport People For Non-Violent Drug Offences to Jamaica

The UK government has been criticised for chartering a flight to deport up to 50 people including a vulnerable drug user and a man who arrived in the country as a baby | VICE, UK

Watch This MDMA Dealer Destroy a £3,500 Stash After Finding Out It Was Fake - video

There’s no trading standards in the drugs business, but this dealer went for the safe option | VICE, UK

UKRI announces new Open Access Policy

UK Research and Innovation’s (UKRI) new policy will increase opportunity for the findings of publicly funded research to be accessed, shared and reused | UKRI, UK

AFINet virtual conference on 9-10 September 2021

Free for memebers and memebership is free. There will be two half-days at different times of the day, which will allow our members and others from various time zones across the world to present and discuss their current work.  Thursday is oriented to the Americas and Europe; Friday oriented to the East and Europe | AFINet, UK

Cannabis café seizure prompts landlord warning

Landlords are being urged to check their premises after police found a "huge stack" of cannabis in an empty café | BBC, UK


International news

Cocaine floods in to Europe as savvy cartels become mightier

[Free one month trial available] Europe is awash with more cocaine than ever and faces a post-pandemic surge of abuse as Colombia produces record amounts and importers stockpile huge quantities in secret warehouses | The Times, UK

Record $1.4bn of cocaine and cannabis seized in Florida

‘Congrats US Coast Guard for largest drug interdiction in USCG history – 26 tons of cocaine & 1,434 lbs of marijuana worth $1.4 billion,’ says Port Everglades dock in Florida | Independent, UK

A Broken System: Drug Control, Detention and Treatment of People Who Use Drugs in Sri Lanka

Over the past decade, the government of Sri Lanka has adopted a militarised approach to drug control, with the military playing an increasingly significant role in the ‘war on drugs’. This includes not only participation in anti-drug trafficking operations, but also in drug treatment and prevention | HRI, UK

HSE issues warning about strength of MDMA and cocaine

The HSE has raised concerns about the increasing strength of MDMA and cocaine, as well as the growing trend of people consuming more than one substance at a time | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Study to prevent deaths from opioid overdose shows promising results

A study undertaken in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Ukraine has shown that training people most likely to witness an opioid overdose and providing them with naloxone, a drug that reduces the effects of overdose if administered rapidly, has the potential to significantly reduce the number of deaths in these countries if scaled up nationwide | WHO, USA

E-cigarette use during pregnancy poses health risk for offspring all the way into adulthood

The use of e-cigarettes (vaping) during pregnancy poses a significant health risk for the offspring, impairing blood vessel function even into adulthood, according to a new study by researchers at West Virginia University's (WVU) School of Medicine | News Medical, USA

Viral video on San Diego deputy's fentanyl exposure raises questions

Some experts expressed doubts about the scenario. "You can't just touch fentanyl and overdose," physician Ryan Marino said | NBC News, USA

While street drug testing is new to Saskatchewan, in B.C. it's helped prevent overdoses for years

On Tuesday the provincial government announced it would be funding drug testing strips to detect two potentially deadly substances sometimes found in street drugs | CTV News, Canada

Andrews government quashes push to legalise cannabis in Victoria

A two-year State Parliament inquiry that was set to recommend legalising cannabis in Victoria has been watered down after Andrews government MPs intervened at the last minute | The Age, Australia

Most chronic pain patients still struggling to persuade their GPs to prescribe medicinal cannabis

Most patients who have spoken to their GP about accessing medicinal cannabis for chronic pain over the last 12 months have seen no change in their willingness to prescribe it, according to Chronic Pain Australia’s National Pain Survey 2021 | Cannabiz, Australia

Health experts warn alcoholism rising across regional Australia as Dry July comes to an end

Experts are suggesting the Dry July movement could be the catalyst to turning around rising rates of alcoholism across regional Australia, as participants reach the final day of the challenge | abc news, Australia

Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Regulations 2021 - consultation

Have your say on the proposed Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances (Precursor Supply) Regulations 2021 | Department of Justice and Community Safety, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Why I’m backing the Right to Recovery Bill

Addiction is not a choice or a lifestyle any more than a mental health condition is, says Karen Biggs, chief executive of Phoenix Futures| DDN, UK

More data on drug related deaths—a clear warning sign that all is not well in the UK     

New evidence shows the risk of drug related death is more acute in deprived areas—a finding that tells us a lot about the UK’s underlying structural inequalities, says Ian Hamilton | BMJ Opinion, UK

Time for Wales to act on drug deaths and quit passing the buck

The summer months are a time for happiness and for families to get together and celebrate their health and wellbeing | The National, UK

Why the WHO is wrong about vaping

The health institution’s anti-vaping approach set out in its latest report on the global tobacco pandemic is scientifically unjustified and will cost lives | Parliament Magazine, Belgium

The Toll of Recovery Advocacy: On Service and Self-care

Recovery advocacy, like any form of social activism, can exact a great personal toll. Some early nineteenth-century recovery advocates thrust themselves completely into the role of temperance missionary in the belief that such work would provide a pathway to personal recovery | William L White papers, USA