Daily news - 11th October 2021

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UK news

Shift in attitudes sees rising number of people rejecting alcohol and socialising while sober, experts say

Lucy Holmes, director of research and policy at charity Alcohol Change, said she had seen “a shift” in people rejecting marketing around alcohol | i news, UK

Proposed Right to Addiction Recovery (Scotland) Bill (PDF)

A proposal for a Bill to enable people addicted to drugs and/or alcohol to access the necessary addiction treatment they require. Consultation by Douglas Ross, MSP for Highlands and Islands (Region) | Parliament.Scot, UK

Drug Deaths

Every day in Scotland, four people lose their lives as a result of drug misuse. That is four lives every day cut needlessly short and families mourning the loss of loved ones every single day in Scotland | They work for you, UK

Falkirk drugs activist charged for running safe consumption room meets the Queen

Peter Krykant, former heroin user, turned campaigner set up and ran the UK’s first safe injecting facility | Daily Record, UK

Swann outlines plan to ban smoking in cars with more than one person

Plans to ban smoking in cars when there is more than one person present are being outlined by the health minister, Robin Swann | BBC, UK

GVC Fund

The GVC Fund aims to support local communities and projects with a focus on sport and physical/mental health.  More broadly, the fund is looking to support health, community sport, and the use of sport and physical activity to raise awareness, tackle mental health stigmas and support adults with mental or physical health problems to become more active. Grants up to £5,000 will be awarded | Cambridgeshire Community Foundation, UK

Man arrested at airport over cocaine conspiracy

A 45-year-old man from North Ayrshire has been arrested by officers investigating an attempt to import almost a quarter of tonne of cocaine | BBC, UK


International news

The drinking experiment - audio

Alcohol is part of the fabric of life in many cultures. It’s associated with socialising, dating, networking, even commiserating . But what happens if you take it away? | BBC, UK

“Hidden gem” from the ’70s suggests counsellors generate the outcomes they expect

The Effectiveness Bank has stopped routinely issuing research analyses, but we couldn’t leave this gem from the ’70s figuratively gathering dust. Belied by an under-stated presentation, its practice implications are profound for treatment staff supporting clients with an apparently unpromising prognosis | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

History, science, and politics of international cannabis scheduling,2015–2021

This report reviews the scientific assessments of Cannabis-related controlled drugs and cannabidiol (CBD) by the WHO’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) and subsequent political discussions at CND that culminated with the 2 December 2020 vote, changing the scheduling of “cannabis” and “cannabis resin” under the C61 | Research Gate, UK

Astonishing Photos Show Heroin Users Forced Into Harsh ‘Rehab’ by Taliban

Photographs document how Taliban fighters in Kabul rounded up 150 homeless drug users who were stripped and had their heads shaved before being locked in prison-like conditions for the next three months | VICE, UK

Illegal spirits containing methanol kill 29 people in Russia

Nine people detained in connection with the deaths in Orenburg region bordering Kazakhstan | Guardian, UK

‘We have to show courage’: the Philippines mothers taking Duterte and his ‘war on drugs’ to court

Up to 30,000 are believed to have died since the president urged police to start killing drug users – now their families want justice | Guardian, UK

Randy Lanier: the hotshot driver who juggled racing and drug smuggling

A new Netflix series explores one man’s twin addictions to racing and drug trafficking. And how his double life eventually caught up to him | Guardian, UK

More than one in five opioid-naïve patients still use opioids three months after surgery

New research suggests more than one in five "opioid-naïve" patients continue to use the pain medication three months after having a procedure, underscoring the often-overlooked role surgery plays in the opioid epidemic | Medical Xpress, USA

Injuries due to family violence involving alcohol, drugs or weapons increased during pandemic stay-at-home months

The proportion of family violence-related injuries in youth ages 10-15 that were associated with alcohol, illegal drugs or weapons increased significantly during the pandemic stay-at-home order at one urban Maryland hospital, according to new research | Medical Xpress, USA

Study identifies factors that make transgender, gender expansive adults more or less likely to smoke

While rates of cigarette smoking among adults in the United States have declined significantly over the past several decades, tobacco use disparities remain among some population groups and disproportionately affect members of vulnerable communities | News Medical, USA

In the quest for a liver transplant, patients are segregated by prior alcohol use

The night before Brian Gorzney planned to check into rehab for alcohol use, he began vomiting blood. First at 2 a.m. Then 5. And again at 11 | npr, USA

NY Gov. Hochul Signs Bills to Decriminalize Syringes, Guarantee OUD Meds in Prisons

New York Governor Kathy Hochul, appointed in August, has already done more for harm reduction than her disgraced predecessor Andrew Cuomo did in 10 years. On October 7, she signed into law two bills that decriminalize syringes and guarantee access to medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD) in jails and prisons | Filter Magazine, USA

How a Drug Policy Activist Spends Her Sundays

[Limited number of free articles per month] For Kassandra Frederique, it’s all about being outside, listening to soothing music and chatting up her girlfriends | NYTimes, USA

Fentanyl death prompts manslaughter charge: LPS

The London Police Service (LPS) has charged a 33-year-old man with manslaughter in connection with a fentanyl overdose death | CTV News, Canada

Cocaine, heroin and meth buyers' club gets Vancouver's approval to secure a safe supply

Council voted unanimously in favour of amended motion to back club, which is seeking federal approval | Vancouver Sun, Canada

An Australian First – Fixed Site Pill Testing Announced

Pill Testing Australia (PTA) and Harm Reduction Australia (HRA) are pleased to advise that approval has been given by the ACT Government to pilot Australia’s first ever fixed site pill testing service | PTA, Australia

Guidelines for treatment of alcohol problems notes risks, stigma

The University of Sydney has led the development of the updated federal Guidelines for the Treatment of Alcohol Problems, publicised in the MJA, which sits alongside the NHMRC alcohol consumption guidelines | University of Sydney, Australia

The history of cannabis in Australia

Have you ever wondered what the cannabis landscape looked like in Australia in the past? Wonder no more. Let’s take a close look at how cannabis has been treated from the time it first arrived in Australia with the First Fleet in 1788 | Pondering Pot, Australia

The 2021 NDARC Annual Research Symposium

Wednesday 20th October - Friday 22nd October. The Symposium will showcase the wide variety and depth of research and programs at NDARC, facilitate dynamic discussions, and provide opportunities to create new connections | NDARC, Australia

New Survey Reveals WHO At Odds With Kiwi Vapers

More than two thirds of vapers believe New Zealand’s approach to vaping as a tobacco harm reduction tool is world-leading and should be promoted overseas to save millions of lives, according to a new survey conducted by research house IRI | SCOOP, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

The agony and the ecstasy: treating substance abusers in prison

My patients are not the standard patients you would expect to see. Many of them are heavy drinkers, drug users with some levels of eating disorders. Generally speaking, individuals who lead or have led a very chaotic life and who need a great deal of education from us | The Probe, UK

What COVID-19 restrictions tell us about violence and how alcohol availability affects this

The COVID-19 epidemic in the UK has disrupted every sector, every town and city and the lives of almost all of us. But it has also provided unique, perhaps never to be repeated opportunities to discover more about behaviour change and what causes it. Keeping people safe is government’s most important priority – safe from new infectious diseases but safe from other threats too, like violence | IAS blog, UK

Tolerance of cannabis is growing just as scientists show that it can cause insanity

Supporters of cannabis legalisation are like the tobacco companies denying the link between smoking and cancer | Independent voices, UK

Interview 12 – Betty Currier – Recovery Review Blog Series – Reflections on the Historic 2001 Recovery Summit in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and the start of the New Recovery Advocacy Movement

I am quite sure I had never met or spoken with Betty before this interview. She is 83 years young and her zest for life and learning came through the telephone line loud and clear | Recovery Review blog, UK