Despite the wealth of evidence supporting key harm reduction interventions such as needle and syringe programmes (NSPs) and opioid substitution therapy (OST), they remain woefully underfunded around the world. We know this by looking at the global coverage: just 8% of people who inject drugs have access to NSPs, and 8% have access to OST.
Many of my colleagues in the addiction and mental health treatment communities support this bill, as reflected in endorsements by the New York State Psychological Association and its Division on Addiction. Allowing the seriously ill access to safe and legal medical marijuana under their health care provider's supervision is, fundamentally, an issue of compassion and human rights. The worst dangers associated with medical marijuana come from forcing patients to seek medical marijuana on the illicit market, with potentially devastating consequences â€" like untested and possibly contaminated product, lifelong criminal records, and shame and stigma from using an illegal substance. When our young people learn that their drug education is filled with misinformation about marijuana, we lose credibility and damage our ability to teach them accurate information about the real dangers of marijuana and other drugs. [...] another reason I support the Compassionate Care Act is because it would generate and earmark substantial funding for such prevention programs, which have unfortunately been devastated by cuts in recent years.
Researchers in mental health are working with colleagues at the Victorian Coroners Court to refine and evaluate a register of deaths by suicide in the state in an effort to identify risk factors for suicide, and to develop effective prevention measures.
These two are inextricably linked. Progressive drug policy change needs the substance use treatment system to adopt a harm reduction orientation as part of its central focus. Existing treatment, by and large, is anti-harm reduction, doesn't work for most people, sets up failure and reinforces the myth that drug users need to be locked up.
Offering problem drinkers the option of moderation frequently works better than mandating abstinence—and many people who use harm reduction approaches do eventually decide to quit. (RT @SanhoTree: RT @substancedotcom: Guess What?
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