Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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London's first e-cigarette coffee shop opens its doors to capital's 'vapers'

London's first e-cigarette coffee shop opens its doors to capital's 'vapers' | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Vape Lab on Shoreditch High Street offers punters 'old fashioned coffee and beautifully engineered electronic cigarettes'
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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
Topics being covered in the media that are of interest to us
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Why I lied about how my dad died (Aus)

Why I lied about how my dad died (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
It was the kindest lie I've ever told. Like most lies, I now somewhat regret it.
ReGenUC's insight:

Gary Nunn reflects on the lasting impact of AOD stigma on individuals and families.

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NHS doctors turning to substance abuse amid rising levels of stress and burnout (UK)

NHS doctors turning to substance abuse amid rising levels of stress and burnout (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The number of GPs seeking specialist help for substance abuse and mental health problems is “increasing day on day”, the medical director of a new NHS support service for doctors has warned.
ReGenUC's insight:

AOD use is a common coping strategy for dealing with workplace stress. Ready access to pharmaceutical quality drugs is a particular risk factor for doctors.

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Medical cannabis users to be banned from driving (SA)

Medical cannabis users to be banned from driving (SA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
USERS of medicinal cannabis will not be allowed to drive with the drug in their system, even if it is made legal in South Australia, Police Minister Peter Malinauskas has confirmed.
ReGenUC's insight:

There isn't any detail here of why Minister Malinauskas would seek to ban people who hadn't consumed THC in their medicinal cannabis products from driving. The article also highlights AOD sector capacity limitations in SA.

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'War On Drugs': Is there a better way? - audio (Aus)

'War On Drugs': Is there a better way? - audio (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
It's time to stop being “tough on drugs” and start being “smart about drugs” says former AFP Commissioner Mick Palmer.
ReGenUC's insight:

Mick Palmer continues his advocacy for evidence based drug policy reform.

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One year on: Has the Punisher fixed the crime? (Philippines)

One year on: Has the Punisher fixed the crime? (Philippines) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

LAUNCHED a year ago, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal war on drugs has resulted in thousands of deaths, yet the street price of crystal methamphetamine in Manila has fallen and surveys show Filipinos are as anxious as ever about crime.

ReGenUC's insight:

To anyone with even a basic familiarity with drug policy, it was obvious from the outset that President Duterte's brutal approach was never going to reduce supply or demand for illicit drugs. What he has achieved is a systemic undermining of human rights in the Philippines (with the death toll from extrajudicial executions and vigilante killings now nearing 8,000) and exacerbated police corruption.

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Zero Tolerance crackdowns and Harm Minimisation have mutually exclusive goals (Vic)

On Saturday 17 of June, the Herald  Sun published what they claim was an exclusive interview with Police Minister Lisa Neville. They “revealed” that ‘Police [were] to get new “stop and search” powers to stamp out drugs at dance festivals’.

ReGenUC's insight:

HRV's Steph Tzanetis responds to last week's coverage of the new police powers. See our comment on related coverage: http://sco.lt/8P68xt 

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Middletown council member: Can we stop responding to overdoses? (USA)

Middletown council member: Can we stop responding to overdoses? (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Middletown City Council member Dan Picard said he wants to instill fear in those who overdose that no one will respond with Narcan to save their life.
ReGenUC's insight:

Local councillor says: just let them die. See last week's post for another example of local govt opposition to harm reduction in the US: http://sco.lt/7d546L.

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Just One Positive Drug Test Will Put People On Income Management (Aus)

Just One Positive Drug Test Will Put People On Income Management (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Alcohol, tobacco and pornography purchases restricted for 24 months.
ReGenUC's insight:

There isn't much new detail here about the Govt's proposed measures, but it's interesting to note (again) that alcohol is not included in the testing regime, but targetted by the penalties for a positive test to cannabis, methamphetamine or ecstasy. Here's our response to the drug testing proposal: http://sco.lt/5LlsrR

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Young Liberals launch fresh assault on NSW government over 'nanny state' lockout laws

Young Liberals launch fresh assault on NSW government over 'nanny state' lockout laws | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

The influential youth wing of the Liberal Party has launched a fresh assault on the federal government over NSW's lockout laws, sensing an opportunity in premier Gladys Berejiklian to have the "nanny state" provisions overturned.

ReGenUC's insight:

Another indicator that the lockouts have been perceived (at least in NSW) as an imposition on young people, by middle aged politicians. Mr Dore doesn't appear to have much of a grasp of the detail of the policy (or its effects), but he is certainly channelling some of the community (and alcohol industry) opposition to the lockouts.

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Don Winslow: President Trump's War on Drugs Is Catastrophic

Don Winslow: President Trump's War on Drugs Is Catastrophic | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
After five decades of this war, drugs are cheaper, more plentiful and more potent than ever, writes Don Winslow, author of The Cartel
ReGenUC's insight:

'Trump and Sessions think the War on Drugs has been a very good thing. They are either woefully or willfully ignorant of the facts.' Don Winslow outlines some of the likely outcomes of emerging White House drug policy.

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Florida Introduces Draconian Sentencing Laws in Attempt to Curb Fentanyl Crisis

New legislation in the US state of Florida will impose strict mandatory minimum sentences for people found possessing fentanyl, while people who sell it to those who l
ReGenUC's insight:

Anyone with a basic level of familiarity with the history of mandatory minimum sentencing, or drug policy could see that this will not reduce overdose risk. It will only succeed in increasing the prison population with people who should be in treatment.

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Illegal drug market is booming, says UN watchdog

Illegal drug market is booming, says UN watchdog | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Report says production of heroin and cocaine is increasing as campaigners call for better measures to tackle cartels
ReGenUC's insight:

Release's Niamh Eastwood makes the obvious point that the 2017 findings provide yet more evidence of the ineffectiveness of prohibitionist policy models at preventing illicit drug production, trafficking and use. You can see the 2017 World Drug Report here: http://sco.lt/6dpbt3

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Anti-Mafia official urges legal cannabis (Italy)

Cannabis should be legalised across Europe to allow law-enforcement authorities to concentrate on more serious crimes than the trafficking of soft drugs, Italy's top anti-Mafia prosecutor says.
ReGenUC's insight:

Mr Roberti says drug trafficking is 'core business' for mafia organisations and calls for legalisation 'in a European framework'.

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Life after opioid addiction: three survivors tell how they got clean (USA)

Life after opioid addiction: three survivors tell how they got clean (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Each overcame her addiction in different ways, but their paths highlight issues with how the disease is treated
ReGenUC's insight:

It's very American in the language used and the way it frames the issues, but the article provides a useful example of challenging the notion that there's only one way to do recovery. It also highlights issues about the accessibility and appropriateness of treatment in the US.

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A nationwide study of the extent and factors associated with fentanyl use in Australia 

The availability of controlled-released formulations of fentanyl and advanced delivery methods has seen substantial increases in the use of fentanyl worldwide since the 1990s.
ReGenUC's insight:

NDARC study examines data on fentanyl sold through Aus pharmacies, highlighting particular risks associated with age, disadvantage and living in remote areas. Of course, the study does not include fentanyl appearing in illicit drug markets, which is probably the main cause for future concern.

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Congresswoman Who Used To Receive Welfare Wants To Drug Test Rich People Who Get Tax Breaks (USA)

Congresswoman Who Used To Receive Welfare Wants To Drug Test Rich People Who Get Tax Breaks (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI) has had enough of the growing movement to drug test poor people who need government assistance. So on Tuesday, she’s introducing a bill that she says will make things fairer…
ReGenUC's insight:

A nice response to the growth in expensive, ineffective and stigmatising drug testing of people who receive welfare payments. It would be interesting to see how such proposals are received if they target other recipients of govt benefits.

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Former NZ MP's shock idea to end ice scourge: 'Execute meth dealers'

Former NZ MP's shock idea to end ice scourge: 'Execute meth dealers' | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A FORMER New Zealand MP believes the key to ending the country’s ice epidemic is by executing Chinese meth dealers.
ReGenUC's insight:

Hyperbole and uninformed opinion about how to respond to methamphetemine related harm is common in public debate, but this takes populism to a new low. Adding racism to human rights abuses does not improve an argument. Good to see both major parties dismissing this sort of rubbish.

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First responders risk fentanyl exposure (USA)

Two investigators recently discovered the effects of the deadly drug fentanyl first-hand after arriving at the scene of a drug bust in the US.
ReGenUC's insight:

More on the public health risks associated with the increased presence of fentanyl in illicit drug markets. We haven't yet reached this level of risk in Australia, but it appears to be a question of when, rather than if, we see a spike in fentanyl-related overdose deaths.

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The opioid curse: Lives lost as patients addicted to painkillers prescribed dozens of drugs (Aus)

By the time Heather Fotiades died, she was obese, barely able to move from the couch and in extreme pain.

ReGenUC's insight:

Personal accounts of the impacts of over-prescribing of opioids for pain management.

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Four laws that have to change. Immediately (Vic)

Four laws that have to change. Immediately (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
People know when the law has become an ass. The collective wisdom and wit of the crowd winnows well. It is the citizenry rather than the polity that tend
ReGenUC's insight:

Michael Short lists the establishment of a Richmond Medically Supervised Injecting Centre as one issue (along with marriage equality, ending mandatory offshore detention and allowing assisted dying) on which our political leaders need to recognise community demand for change and stop obstructing evidence based policy proposals.

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Girls out-drinking boys to passing out (WA)

Girls out-drinking boys to passing out (WA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
PARAMEDICS and health researchers are alarmed by the number of under-age teenage girls in Perth getting so drunk they need urgent medical help.
ReGenUC's insight:

While overall patterns of alcohol consumption amongst young people continue to decline, we are seeing an increasing concentration of harm amongst a small group who are drinking at excessive levels. This group have previously been referred to as 'super binge drinkers'. The other broad pattern in alcohol data is that women's consumption is nearing that of men, increasing the level of short and long term related harm.

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Harsh Reception For Supervised Drug Injection In Boston

Harsh Reception For Supervised Drug Injection In Boston | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Supporters urged council members to back opening a supervised injection facility in Boston. But, the proposal received pushback with some councilors arguing that SIFs enable people to do illicit drugs.
ReGenUC's insight:

A useful reminder of the level of ideological opposition to evidence based harm reduction measures (and a refusal to listen to the evidence) that impedes meaningful drug policy reform, not just in the States, but around the world. If you think Councillor Baker's comments are shocking, see this reporting of recent Casey council grandstanding on MSICs: http://sco.lt/7rzzyD

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Turin bans late night alcohol sales after stampede that injured 1,500

Turin bans late night alcohol sales after stampede that injured 1,500 | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Turin mayor Chiara Appendino on Thursday introduced a measure clamping down on the sale of takeaway alcoholic drinks in the evening, after a stampede in one of the city's main squares on Saturday night left over 1,500 people injured.
ReGenUC's insight:

See today's related coverage of Young Liberal opposition to the NSW lockout laws: http://sco.lt/6Tc3Cj.

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More pensioners caught drink-driving because they 'think they can still drive safely', AA warns (UK)

More pensioners caught drink-driving because they 'think they can still drive safely', AA warns (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
More elderly people are getting caught for drink-driving because they believe they can still drive safely when drunk.
ReGenUC's insight:

Ministry of Justice data also shows reduced rates of drink driving amongst young people.

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Don’t count on China in fentanyl crisis – cutting demand is key: UN

Don’t count on China in fentanyl crisis – cutting demand is key: UN | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Choking off supply from opioid heavyweight China could be futile, World Drug Report warns
ReGenUC's insight:

UNODC makes the point that, where there is demand, there will always be supply. Fentanyl is relatively easy to synthesise and other suppliers are likely to emerge if Chinese production drops.

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