Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Why the war on drugs has been made redundant (UK)

Why the war on drugs has been made redundant (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
For every 'designer drug' the authorities ban, clandestine labs are churning out a new version. No wonder the law can't keep up, writes Vaughan Bell
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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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'You talk we die': Abbotsford mural calls for action on safe injecting room (Vic)

'You talk we die': Abbotsford mural calls for action on safe injecting room (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
As a war rages on in the community and halls of parliament over safe injecting rooms, an artwork in a quiet alleyway brings home the human cost.
ReGenUC's insight:

Nice coverage of the Victoria Street Drug Solutions mural and promotion of the 'March to Save Lives' on Sunday. For more details about the march, see the VSDS Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/events/491449194537392/?acontext=%7B%22action_history%22%3A%22[%7B%5C%22surface%5C%22%3A%5C%22page%5C%22%2C%5C%22mechanism%5C%22%3A%5C%22page_upcoming_events_card%5C%22%2C%5C%22extra_data%5C%22%3A[]%7D]%22%2C%22has_source%22%3Atrue%7D. 

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Five Reasons Why Drug Consumption Rooms Benefit People Who Don’t Use Drugs (UK)

Five Reasons Why Drug Consumption Rooms Benefit People Who Don’t Use Drugs (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
As the proposal moves forward to open the UK’s first drug consumption room (DCR) in Glasgow, here are five key things that naysayers should take note of.
ReGenUC's insight:

Avinash Tharoor helps explain why harm reduction measures should be seen as a community issue, with widespread benefits, not just a niche issue for a small, marginalised group.

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Harm reduction workers hope testing strips will help prevent deaths from 'toxic' drug supply (Canada)

Harm reduction workers hope testing strips will help prevent deaths from 'toxic' drug supply (Canada) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
At the overdose prevention site in Moss Park, harm reduction workers will soon have another tool to help drug users avoid fatal overdoses — test strips able to detect the presence of fentanyl.
ReGenUC's insight:

It's always important to remember that this sort of testing has limitations, but it can be the difference between life and death.

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The strange thing that happens when marijuana is legalised (Aus)

The strange thing that happens when marijuana is legalised (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

It's been a long time since I've smoked weed. When a casual joint makes an appearance: maybe after a boozy night with friends; my answer is always the same: 'No thanks, it triggers my anxiety.'

ReGenUC's insight:

Katie Homeshaw considers the state of the current public discussion of cannabis policy, some of the potential risks associated with cannabis use and some of the benefits of introducing regulated markets.

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'It's unfair and it sucks’: Welfare users slam plans for random drug test trial (NSW)

'It's unfair and it sucks’: Welfare users slam plans for random drug test trial (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
CENTRELINK users have hit out at the Governments plan to trial drug testing for welfare recipients in western Sydney, slamming the scheme as unfair and unhelpful.
ReGenUC's insight:

Good to see some attention being given to the experience of those most likely to be directly affected by the Turnbull Govt's proposed measures. This article focuses on the Cantebury-Bankstown area, which has been named as one of the trial sites.

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Drivers turn to drugs (Vic)

Drivers turn to drugs (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Drug-drivers say they are increasing swapping to synthetic substances to avoid police detection, as the number of drug-drivers attending court-imposed education has overtaken drink-drivers at Victoria's major training centres.

ReGenUC's insight:

This article is behind the NewsLtd paywall. It cites our Brandon Jones on the increase in drug driving referrals to our services and our work with VicRoads in piloting a more intensive drug-driver program.

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Northern Territory's new banned drinkers register expected to be tougher than last time

Northern Territory's new banned drinkers register expected to be tougher than last time | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The Northern Territory Government's new banned drinkers register will be tougher than when Labor was last in power, with people barred from buying take-away alcohol if convicted of mid-range and low-range drink driving offences.
ReGenUC's insight:

With mining magnate and the Turnbull Govt turning up the heat in the push for the expansion of the cashless welfare card program, it's worth remembering that initiatives like the BDR have been effective in targetting those most likely to engage in alcohol related violence.

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'Payment by results' for drug misuse treatment gets mixed reception (UK)

'Payment by results' for drug misuse treatment gets mixed reception (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A team of University of Manchester academics has published an evaluation of the impact of the Government's pilot Payment By Results scheme for drug misuse treatment – giving it a mixed reception.
ReGenUC's insight:

Evaluation finds PBR reduced rates of successful treatment completion. The results have been published in the new edition of the journal Addiction. 

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Drug dealer deaths rise in Indonesia

Amnesty International says the number of suspected drug dealers killed in police raids in Indonesia have skyrocketed this year in what could be an alarming sign that Indonesian authorities might be trying to emulate the aggressive war on drugs in neighbouring Philippines.
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence that President Widodo is taking his drug policy lead from Philippines' President Duterte. See today's coverage of Duterte's renewed commitment to a long-term plan of extrajudicial executions: http://sco.lt/7hdBPl

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A study finding a huge increase in alcoholism may have been seriously flawed (USA)

A study finding a huge increase in alcoholism may have been seriously flawed (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
According to several researchers, the survey data behind the study is seriously faulty.
ReGenUC's insight:

See German Lopez's original coverage of the study: http://sco.lt/6dMisz

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Destroy trust to damage the Dark Net

Destroy trust to damage the Dark Net | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
It seems odd that a seller of illegal drugs hiding on the Dark Net might be concerned about reputation, but new research suggests that besmirching character i
ReGenUC's insight:

US research highlights the importance of trust in online drug markets. It could be that the use (and customer awareness) of exit scams (building up a market, then absconding with customers' funds) is a factor in the lack of repeat purchases.

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Mother's torment: "I'll be in that place where he died alone, in that gutter. I'll honour him." (Vic) - audio

Mother's torment: "I'll be in that place where he died alone, in that gutter. I'll honour him." (Vic) - audio | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Sam O’Donnell died from a heroin overdose almost a year ago. His mother, Loretta Gabriel, says a medically supervised safe-injecting centre could have saved his life. "My heart aches. It's physical," she told Jon Faine. She’s now lobbying the Victorian Government to legislate for the facilities to save others.
ReGenUC's insight:

Podcast of Ms Gabriel's powerful advocacy on Jon Faine's program on the need for a Medically Supervised Injecting Centre in Melbourne and the importance of practical, evidence based responses to illicit drug use within our communities. You can't recover if you're dead. The audio runs for 18 minutes.

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Drug-testing welfare recipients won't stop addiction, psychiatrists warn (Aus)

Drug-testing welfare recipients won't stop addiction, psychiatrists warn (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Australia’s peak body for psychiatrists says Coalition’s plan ‘very simplistic’ and at odds with 50 years of evidence
ReGenUC's insight:

More expert advice for the Turnbull Govt to ignore.  

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Drug deaths spike in past year (Vic)

Drug deaths spike in past year (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Today's Moonee Valley Leader coverage (citing our Paul Aiken) of recent overdose data showing increases in overdose deaths there, Moreland and Monash. If someone you care about uses opioids (prescribed or otherwise), they could be at risk of overdose. 

ReGenUC's insight:

Our Paul Aiken highlights the need for increased community awareness of the overdose risk associated with use of prescription (and illicit) opioids. To read the article, see page three of the digital reader.

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Welfare crackdown 'will move drug problem closer to the heart of the city' (NSW)

Welfare crackdown 'will move drug problem closer to the heart of the city' (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
As many as 1750 young people and job seekers in western Sydney face drug-testing and strict welfare quarantining.
ReGenUC's insight:

Citing Matt Noffs, Nadine Ezard and Yvonne Bonomo on some of the reasons why the AOD and broader health and welfare sectors are opposed to the Turnbull Govt's proposed measures. Here's what we had to say on the issue: http://sco.lt/5LlsrR. See today's related coverage from NSW & Qld: http://sco.lt/5pojx3http://sco.lt/8BiYoD

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'Atrocious' drug testing trial for Logan welfare recipients (Qld)

'Atrocious' drug testing trial for Logan welfare recipients (Qld) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Logan mayor Luke Smith has accused the Turnbull government of having an "atrocious" understanding of his city after it was named as the second site of the Commonwealth's drug-testing trial for welfare recipients.

ReGenUC's insight:

To date, the Turnbull Govt has ignored the advice of the AOD, health and welfare sectors on this issue.  It will be interesting to see how it responds to wider community opposition in the areas targetted within this trial. Logan now joins Cantebury-Bankstown as the second of three trial sites. See today's related coverage from NSW: http://sco.lt/55u7f7http://sco.lt/8BiYoD

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Kian Loyd delos Santos, 17, was killed by police in Duterte’s drug war (Philippines)

Kian Loyd delos Santos, 17, was killed by police in Duterte’s drug war (Philippines) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
HE DREAMT of becoming a policeman, but instead was gunned down by the men whose shoes he may have one day filled.
ReGenUC's insight:

Yet another victime of the drugwarcrimes committed under the Duterte regime. 

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Addiction Experts Beg Government To Scrap Welfare Drug Tests (Aus)

Addiction Experts Beg Government To Scrap Welfare Drug Tests (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Some of Australia's foremost experts on addiction have pleaded for the federal government to scrap its controversial plan to drug test welfare recipients, saying the program's negative impacts far outweigh its benefits and that it will further swamp an already struggling treatment sector.

ReGenUC's insight:

Dr Adrian Reynolds (AOD Clinical Services Director for the Tasmanian Health Service & addiction medicine chapter president for the RACP) and Assoc Prof Yvonne Bonomo (Director of the addiction medicine department at St Vincent's hospital in Melbourne) add to the calls for the Turnbull Govt to cancel its plans for mandatory drug testing of Newstart recipients.

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'The stigma around ice addicts silences their family members' (Aus) - video

'The stigma around ice addicts silences their family members' (Aus) - video | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Mikayla's cousin committed suicide as a result of his ice addiction. But when she tried to talk to people about it she faced a stigma and hostility she never expected.
ReGenUC's insight:

Great to see affected families speaking out about the impacts of stigma and the role it plays in making it harder for people to seek help.

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Rodrigo Duterte vows to double down on drug war as raid kills 21 (Philippines)

Rodrigo Duterte vows to double down on drug war as raid kills 21 (Philippines) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
In the latest bloodbath, 21 Filipinos were killed on Tuesday night in 16 separate raids.
ReGenUC's insight:

When you're being mentioned in the same sentence as Pol Pot, it should be an indicator (even to a leader like President Duterte) that committing to a long term plan of killing your constituents is not the way to go. Unfortunately, today's related coverage shows further evidence that Indonesian President Widodo is looking to follow his lead: http://sco.lt/7Qsqjx

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Drug related deaths are at their highest level in 25 years – here’s why (UK)

Drug related deaths are at their highest level in 25 years – here’s why (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
ReGenUC's insight:

Ian Hamilton and Harry Sumnall cite two key drivers of overdose deaths: fentanyl and UK drug policy.

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Drug death figures show it is time for harm reduction (Scotland)

Drug death figures show it is time for harm reduction (Scotland) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Dr Iain McPhee argues the Scottish Government's drugs strategy isn't working and needs to move away from the UK model
ReGenUC's insight:

See yesterday's related post on the need for change in the Scottish Govt's drug policy model if it is to seriously address the growth in overdose fatalities: http://sco.lt/7HnfVp

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Ugly truth about the US medical industry

Ugly truth about the US medical industry | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
AMERICA is in the grips of an opioid epidemic.
ReGenUC's insight:

Warning: this story contains the sort of gratuitous images of people overdosing that have already proven to be powerful clickbait in US media coverage. The article focuses on the impact of opioid dependence in Ohio, with the state's coroner predicting he will see 10,000 overdoses by the end of the year. See today's related coverage: http://sco.lt/5KEy7l

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Turning opioid epidemic into a crime crackdown would be a disaster for the US

Turning opioid epidemic into a crime crackdown would be a disaster for the US | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
In Butler County Ohio, Sheriff Richard K. Jones has found himself to be of remarkable notoriety and a regular on national cable TV.
ReGenUC's insight:

BJ Bethel considers local and national examples of problematic responses to the US opioid crisis and the significant risks they pose to public health and safety. See yesterday's coverage of President Trump's declaration of a national emergency: http://sco.lt/6kIj7B

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Data retention is about policing drug crime, not terrorism (Aus)

Data retention is about policing drug crime, not terrorism (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Data retention was once "vital" for national security, but new figures show metadata is used in drug investigations 10 times as much as in terrorism cases.
ReGenUC's insight:

CNET's Claire Reilly on Attorney General's Dept data showing that illicit drug offences are (by far) the most common reason for police use of metadata.  Terrorism is 17th on the list.

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