A new study has called for ‘outdated’ UK drug laws to be re-examined.
The first is the addition of a new class of drugs to the current Misuse of Drugs Act – the class D model, which has successfully been adopted in New Zealand. Class D substances act as a holding category for new drugs before they are fully understood: sales are limited to over-18s; the product is quality-controlled so users know what they are getting, at doses limited as far as possible to safe levels; and it comes with health education messages. This gives scientists and the government the chance to limit sales and collect data on use, while also investigating the harms associated with a new substance. Manufacturers and shops that disobey these regulations are punished, and users are protected, but not criminalised.