Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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War on drugs draws Canadian military focus in Central America

War on drugs draws Canadian military focus in Central America | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The government's new focus on the Americas means a dramatic change of effort for the Canadian Forces and an overt participation in the U.S. war on drugs, says the commander of Canada's operational forces in an exclusive interview.
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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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A health assessment of welfare reforms: likely to be 'politically popular, but ineffective and potentially harmful' (Aus)

A health assessment of welfare reforms: likely to be 'politically popular, but ineffective and potentially harmful' (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Health leaders this week urged the wider health sector to engage with welfare reform debate and processes, noting the significant impacts that such reforms could have upon healthcare systems and the community’s health and wellbeing. In the article below, the CEO of UnitingCare ReGen, Laurence Alvis, urges the Federal Government to be cautious about adopting approaches that are based upon simplistic understandings of complex issues, such as alcohol and other drug dependence, and that do little to address the structural and social determinants of health. 

ReGenUC's insight:

Our response to last week's indications from the Federal Government that future welfare reforms could see payments being linked to recipients 'obligation to refrain' from AOD use. 

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Could European Court of Human Rights Overturn Russia’s Ban on Drugs to Treat Heroin Dependence?

Could European Court of Human Rights Overturn Russia’s Ban on Drugs to Treat Heroin Dependence? | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A recent decision in the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) could have significant implications for an upcoming challenge against Russia’s ban on opioid substitutio
ReGenUC's insight:

See recent coverage of the personal risks being taken by the three activists bringing this case to court: http://sco.lt/9GvZMP

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The opioid addict next door: Drug abuse where you least expect it (USA)

The opioid addict next door: Drug abuse where you least expect it (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
"It can happen to anyone and it does happen to anybody,” according to Behshad Sheldon, a member of Female Opioid-addiction Research and Clinical Experts.
ReGenUC's insight:

Highlighting the role stigma plays in making it harder for people to seek support.

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Life Becomes Even More Dangerous for American Heroin Users

The feds are set to make Kratom, a popular herbal painkiller used as an alternative to heroin and Oxy, schedule I. This is very bad for America's addicts and others who use opioids.
ReGenUC's insight:

Maia Szalavitz on the potential impacts of the recently increased restrictions on Kratom.

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Gold Coast council to spend up to $1 million drug testing 50 workers a week 

Gold Coast council to spend up to $1 million drug testing 50 workers a week  | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

GOLD Coast council staff are about to be subject to random drug and alcohol testing for at least the next two years. Council are currently seeking a contractor to conduct drug and alcohol tests on staff on a random basis.

ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of the boom market for drug testing companies. See our recent piece on the role unquestioning media coverage plays in creating demand for these services, in spite of the lack of evidence for their effectiveness: http://sco.lt/5aHsnJ.

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'Hangover free alcohol' could replace all regular alcohol by  2050, says David Nutt (UK)

'Hangover free alcohol' could replace all regular alcohol by  2050, says David Nutt (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A new type of synthetic alcohol has been discovered which could allow people to enjoy the sociable effects of a few pints, but skip the hangover that usually follows.
ReGenUC's insight:

Prof Nutt has been talking about developing such a product for a while now. It will be interesting to see how it is accepted by policy makers and the general public.

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High Hitler: how Nazi drug abuse steered the course of history

High Hitler: how Nazi drug abuse steered the course of history | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
German writer Norman Ohler’s astonishing account of methamphetamine addiction in the Third Reich changes what we know about the second world war
ReGenUC's insight:

Another example from the long (and continuing) history of stimulant use by the military.

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EDM's 'summer of death' reporting is more than just tabloid raving (USA)

EDM's 'summer of death' reporting is more than just tabloid raving (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
There have been 25 deaths at EDM events in Los Angeles over the past three years. Unless the problem is taken seriously, the scene’s future is at risk
ReGenUC's insight:

Mr Romero says the 'only' options to prevent festival overdoses are to ban festivals or to increase the age of entry. Neither of those will be effective. Dug checking services would have a much greater likelihood of reducing immediate risk, and supporting education on the potential risks associated with illicits. 

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Liberals prepared to kill Harper government limits on supervised-injection sites (Canada)

Liberals prepared to kill Harper government limits on supervised-injection sites (Canada) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
OTTAWA — The federal government said Wednesday it is prepared to amend Conservative legislation that critics say was intended to prevent the national proliferation of supervised injection sites modelled after Vancouver’s Insite facility.
ReGenUC's insight:

It makes a nice change to see a govt that is working to remove obstacles to the expansion of evidence based harm reduction services. Australian govts could learn from this example. FYI, here's our position statement on the establishment of a Medically Supervised Injecting Center in Melbourne: http://www.regen.org.au/images/stories/Advocacy/Medically-Supervised-Injecting-Centre_Position-Statement_ReGen_v3.0.pdf.

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Tougher Ice Dealer Laws To Reduce Harm In Victoria

Those who peddle in the misery of the ice trade will face tougher penalties under new laws proposed by the Andrews Labor Government. New legislation is being drafted which will see a lowering of commercial and large commercial quantities for ice trafficking – giving police greater capacity to prosecute dealers.

ReGenUC's insight:

Media release from Police Minister Lisa Neville. While such measures are politically popular, there's little evidence they are effective in reducing illicit drug related harm within our communities.

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Jail needle exchange veto shows unions 'dictating' public health policy: researchers (ACT)

Jail needle exchange veto shows unions 'dictating' public health policy: researchers (ACT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Researchers have slammed the voting down of the a needle exchange program at Canberra's Alexander Maconochie Centre saying it should be evidence rather tha
ReGenUC's insight:

Marke Stoove and Carla Treloar make the clear case for greater harm reduction in Australian prisons and highlight the ongoing lack of political will to support it.

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Fewer police sniffer dog searches but most still don't find drugs (NSW)

Fewer police sniffer dog searches but most still don't find drugs (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
More than two-thirds of searches done last year in NSW did not find drugs
ReGenUC's insight:

New data provides more evidence of the ineffectiveness of using sniffer dogs and shows Redfern is one of the most frequently targetted suburbs, in spite of the fact that it has one of the lowest levels of positive search results.

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Coroner warns over use of drugs while playing sport after linking ice use to death of footballer (Tas)

Coroner warns over use of drugs while playing sport after linking ice use to death of footballer (Tas) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A TASMANIAN coroner has issued a warning about the dangers of using ice while playing sport as she handed down her findings into the death of a Railton man at his local football ground.
ReGenUC's insight:

Important to note here that methamphetamine use was only one of the factors (together with hear disease) found to have contributed to Mr White's death.

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VCAT rejects tobacco giant's push to access schoolchildren smoking data (Vic)

VCAT rejects tobacco giant's push to access schoolchildren smoking data (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

A judge has quashed a move by big tobacco to access a confidential survey of thousands of Australian schoolchildren that reveals their views on smoking and which brands they prefer.

ReGenUC's insight:

Justice Garde finds releasing the Cancer Council of Victoria research would be contrary to the public interest.

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Former drug addict turns his life around (NSW)

Former drug addict turns his life around (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
When Daniel Baxter was 16, he had already been expelled from school and was addicted to the drug ice.
ReGenUC's insight:

A good example of the importance of family support and employment pathways in supporting recovery.

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Holding space for the unredeemed: harm reduction and justice (USA)

I spent last Friday in Chicago at the Midwest Harm Reduction Institute’s annual conference. The theme was Growing from Our Roots:
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Harm Reduction Coalition's Daniel Raymond on the need for harm reduction advocacy to be focussed on promoting social justice.

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Is this the most miserable place in the world? Quezon city jail overflows as Duterte cracks down on drugs (Philippines)

Is this the most miserable place in the world? Quezon city jail overflows as Duterte cracks down on drugs (Philippines) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Surely there can be few places as miserable as the jail in metropolitan Manila's most populous city as president Rodrigo Duterte wages his deadly war on drug
ReGenUC's insight:

The conditions are appalling, but those who have handed themselves in would probably see it as preferable to being executed by President Duterte's death squads.

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Cannabis trials at Hunter hospitals (NSW)

Cannabis trials at Hunter hospitals (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Medicinal cannabis is edging forward in the Hunter.
ReGenUC's insight:

Researchers say the trial will accept its first patients 'in the coming months'.

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Nursing Drug Policy back to Health

Nursing Drug Policy back to Health | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The human rights implications of drug policy and drug use are many and varied. In the latest instalment of their exclusive series of articles for VolteFace, Kate Thompson and Petr Kudêlka explore the interface between the two, and, in particular, how drug policy impacts on the right to health. One of the focal points of any discussion about drugs, drug … Continued
ReGenUC's insight:

Highlighting the global impacts of prohibitionist policy models.

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Cleveland area sees seven drug overdose deaths in one day, officials say

Cleveland area sees seven drug overdose deaths in one day, officials say | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Officials believe either heroin or fentanyl were involved after 52 deaths from those drugs in the area last month
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of the importance of getting naloxone into as many hands as possible to prevent overdose fatalities.

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Secret trove reveals Abbott's bold 'crusade' to sell OxyContin (USA)

Secret trove reveals Abbott's bold 'crusade' to sell OxyContin (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Internal documents obtained by STAT show the lengths to which Abbott Laboratories went to hook in doctors and make OxyContin a billion-dollar blockbuster.
ReGenUC's insight:

An insight into Big Pharma marketing tactics, and just how easily they can result in changes to doctors' prescribing practice.

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$87 Million Boost For Family Violence Support Services (Vic)

$87 Million Boost For Family Violence Support Services (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with implementing Family Violence Royal Commission recommendations through further investments in support services for victims of family violence and sexual assault and the appointment of an Implementation Monitor.

ReGenUC's insight:

The Vic Govt announces its funding response to the Family Violence Royal Commission recommendations. Our new Caring Dad's program (now into the second week of it's first round) is part of this response.  

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How a Canberra father beat an ice addiction to regain his daughter from foster care

How a Canberra father beat an ice addiction to regain his daughter from foster care | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A Canberra father who overcame an ice addiction to regain his young daughter from foster care has told how he threw his crack pipe away the day he lost her.
ReGenUC's insight:

Nice recovery story, citing the supports received from SMART Recovery groups and the Uniting Children and Families program. 

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Duterte's drug crackdown hits home as man shot dead in front of his pregnant wife, family (Philippines)

Duterte's drug crackdown hits home as man shot dead in front of his pregnant wife, family (Philippines) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Manila woman says police assassinated her husband in case of mistaken identity.
ReGenUC's insight:

So, 'crime is well down', if you don't count the more than 3,500 state sanctioned murders that have been committed in the past few months. Another tragic example of the impacts of President Duterte's brutal policies, with no end in sight.

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Drug rehabilitation program funded by blueberries (NSW)

Drug rehabilitation program funded by blueberries (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A drug and alcohol rehabilitation program in northern New South Wales enters the blueberry industry to raise money and train its clients.
ReGenUC's insight:

On Adele's facility in Bucca. See more about Adele's services here: http://adele.org.au/.

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