Catalina was in prison for a drug conviction in Guaviare, Colombia. She had been detained for possessing some coca paste – an amount barely sufficient to economically support herself and her two young children for a few weeks. She didn’t kno
Kasia Malinowska highlights the impacts of global drug policies on women and the importance of Consumer Participation to improving policy and reducing the impacts of AOD use within our communities. See today's related post on NJ Gov Chris Christie listening to those directly affected by his states drug policies: http://sco.lt/5N7B9V.
Mike Vence left the sober living house where he's staying in Brick at 6:30 a.m., caught a bus, walked and got lost, but still arrived almost four hours early to meet Gov. Chris Christie Wednesday morning and tell him the state's 'ban the box' law isn't working.
Nice example of how listening to those directly affected can help improve drug policy frameworks. See yesterday's coverage of Gov Christie's proposed measures: http://sco.lt/8i6No9
IT’S called responsible service of alcohol and when it comes to supplying it to minors, supermarket giant ALDI and some bottle shops are leaving nothing to chance when enforcing it.
Adult shoppers refused service when their children touch the alcohol they seek to purchase. The 'nanny state' outrage aside, this story highlights some of the complications inherent in selling alcohol as groceries.
The New Jersey governor used his State of the State address to offer proposals that included limits on prescriptions and increases in treatment.
Proposed measures include forcing insurers to fund a minimum of six-months' treatment. If adopted more broadly, this could have a significant impact on the US treatment system, which has already been identified as vulnerable to greater corporatisation: http://sco.lt/6j4Ee9.
Indonesian authorities are sending mixed messages on the death penalty. The country abstained on a UN resolution for its abolition, and the president hinted at ending it, but some senior political figures are calling for the increased execution of drug offenders.
Niobe Osius considers the future of Indonesian drug policy.
Drug users in police custody are least likely to reach out to anonymous telephone helplines and internet resources to combat their drug habit, a new study ha
DUMA findings indicate:
- Detainees who were employed reported lower levels of readiness to change their drug use than those who were not.
- Those who were in a relationship with someone reported higher levels of readiness to change than those not in a relationship.
- Detainees said they would most likely seek help for their drug problem from doctors or a general practitioner (66%), followed by a romantic partner (64%).
- They were less likely to seek help from the internet (35%) and anonymous telephone helplines (27%).
- Almost a quarter of those surveyed (24%) had completed a TAFE program. A small number (3%) had completed a university degree.
Also, a note to Minister Keenan, when you talk about planning to 'smash demand', you're talking about people. If you're serious about reducing demand for illicit drugs, you might want to start by addressing the social and structural factors (such as poverty, marginalisation, violence, homelessness, mental health) that drive much demand. You should probably also start using different language to describe some of the most vulnerable people within our communities.
Women who like a tipple are condescended to and judged far more than men who do the same, writes Maeve Marsden.
Much of the recent concern about alcohol related harm amongst women relates to increased levels of consumption, approaching par with men amongst some groups. This is part of a long term pattern, linked to general improvements in gender equality, but obviously not good news for public health. A particular example of where women's alcohol (and other drug use) can result in overly prescriptive (or discriminatory) interventions is pregnancy. While concerns about FASD and the impacts of other drug use on babies and children are very real and need to be addressed, punitive measures (including the criminalising of women's behaviour during pregnancy: http://sco.lt/7VRjOL) are unlikely to address the reasons why women use AOD in the first place, or support sustainable change.
But promisingly, nationwide political support for providing injection drug users with clean needles to curb HIV and hepatitis C has risen.
Benjamin Ryan considers the future of US harm reduction, in the context of increasing public support for evidence based responses, and the impending Trump presidency. See today's related post on a Republican Senator's call for the president-elect to withdraw is support for Philippines President Duterte's brutal drug policies: http://sco.lt/806Xa5.
After a spate of overdoses from a 'toxic' batch of ecstasy on Chapel street last weekend, and one death from an unidentified substance at a New Year's rave
A great piece by Sarah Gill highlighting the illogicality of much public drug policy, highlighting the importance of policies based on evidence, not moral judgements and the need for ongoing advocacy to increase public (& political) support for change.
Cannabis use among older adults in the US is on the rise, yet there is currently a lack of biomedical, clinical, and public health research to inform policy related to this trend, according to a new article published in The Gerontologist.
US data indicates that both recreational and medicinal use grew from 1% to 4% of people over 50 between 2010 & 2012.
Prohibition may be falling out of fashion in the West, but Singapore and its neighbours remain fierce advocates
In addition to the ongoing outrages in the Philippines, this article highlights some of the human rights abuses perpetrated by 'treatment' providers in the region and the stigmatising attitudes that underpin them.
Young people sometimes get a bad rap for being lazy, self-indulgent and off the rails.
'Australia's youngest political commentator' is at it again. Most of what is included here is a reasonable discussion of the recent NDARC research on the impacts of parental alcohol supply on young people's drinking (http://sco.lt/58FGUb). However, when he moves on to illicit drugs, he loses contact with any evidence. The legal status of illicit drugs is directly linked to the potential harm associated with their use. As a legal product, alcohol is regulated and subject to quality controls. Poisonings related to 'bootleg' alcohol show what happens when it isn't (http://sco.lt/6hqZRx,http://sco.lt/7DndRZ,http://sco.lt/6hqZRx). If illicit drugs were subject to similar controls, the harm associated with their use would be significantly reduced. You can see Mr Bond's other recent contribution to the national drug policy debate here: http://sco.lt/4rPgkz.
Churches and other faith-based organizations have increasingly voiced approval of syringe exchange programs, sometimes launching their own.
A nice example of a church operating from basic principles: you can't help someone if they're dead. In spite of all the inflammatory rhetoric around harm reduction measures like NSPs, this is what it comes down to: helping people stay alive.
Ontario's health minister says "more can be done" to tackle the opioid crisis at a community level in the province and has committed to funding three supervised safe injection sites in Toronto at an estimated annual cost of about $1.6 million and an initial cost of $400,000.
Good news for Toronto, but see yesterday's post about local frustrations with delays to implementation of new supervised injecting facilities: http://sco.lt/6gM7FZ.
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