Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Welfare card expansion passes first hurdle (Aus)

The government's effort to extend cashless welfare card trials further into Western Australia and Queensland has passed the lower house.

ReGenUC's insight:

Goldfields (WA), Hervey Bay and Bundaberg (Qld) are one step closer to having trials of the card. It will be interesting to see how the bill fares in the Senate.

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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Decades before the pill testing debate these little bins caused an uproar (Aus)

Decades before the pill testing debate these little bins caused an uproar (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The pill testing debate continues to rage in the wake of deaths at music festivals, but 30 years ago a similar controversy engulfed a public health scheme that is now so common you would barely notice it.
ReGenUC's insight:

Citing Alex Wodak on the evolution of Australian harm reduction policy, and the consistent moral panic that has ensued with each step forward.

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Drug deaths won't stop pill testing trials: Barr (ACT)

Drug deaths won't stop pill testing trials: Barr (ACT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Meanwhile one of the service's staunchest opponents has accepted an invitation to observe the trial.
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ACT's Chief Minister reaffirms his support for the second Groovin the Moo pilot.

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How many Australians are accessing unapproved medicinal cannabis?

How many Australians are accessing unapproved medicinal cannabis? | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The number of special access approvals has shot up by hundreds over the past few months The TGA has released its latest data on th
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New TGA data highlights increase in SAS access since scheme was introduced last year.

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Bestival drugs death: Louella Fletcher-Michie 'could have survived' (UK)

Bestival drugs death: Louella Fletcher-Michie 'could have survived' (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Louella Fletcher-Michie had become "exhausted" by the effects of the drug 2-CP, a court heard
ReGenUC's insight:

A timely reminder of the importance of health-based responses to illicit drug use and related harm, along with the current barriers to young people seeking medical help in cases of overdose.

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How alcohol is still proving deadly for the French

How alcohol is still proving deadly for the French | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
In France, alcohol kills tens of thousands of people each year, with French men particularly affected, a new report shows.
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...but new national data shows alcohol-related deaths declining 2% since 2009.

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Glasgow's alcohol court to deal with domestic abuse

Glasgow's alcohol court to deal with domestic abuse | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The court in Glasgow will be able to deal with abuse cases where alcohol was a factor.
ReGenUC's insight:

Expanded scope for court enables non-custodial response to alcohol-related family violence.

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'We went to Iraq on less evidence': Q&A panel clash over pill testing (Aus)

'We went to Iraq on less evidence': Q&A panel clash over pill testing (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Amid a contentious debate on Monday's Q&A, it fell to former Federal Police chief Mick Palmer to own the night in a few simple words.
ReGenUC's insight:

Summary of last night's QANDA drug policy discussion.

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Trump Said China Doesn't Have a Drug Problem. The Data tells a different story

Trump Said China Doesn't Have a Drug Problem. The Data tells a different story | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
President Donald Trump said China doesn't have a drug problem because it can use the death penalty. Here's the truth about drugs in China.
ReGenUC's insight:

President says US should emulate Chinese approach (including use of death penalty for drug offences), in spite of the evidence that it does not work. See today's related coverage: http://sco.lt/6nXtpI

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Andrew Barr gives second pill-testing trial the green light (ACT)

Andrew Barr gives second pill-testing trial the green light (ACT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr has given the go-ahead for what he says will be a potentially life-saving pill-testing trial at this year's Groovin the Moo music festival.

ReGenUC's insight:

2nd (& larger) pill-testing pilot approved for Groovin the Moo in April.

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It's time to change our drug dog policies to catch dealers, not low-level users at public events (NSW)

It's time to change our drug dog policies to catch dealers, not low-level users at public events (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
It's ineffective to use drug dogs at festivals and in public places because they're much more likely to catch small-time users than suppliers.
ReGenUC's insight:

Caitlin Hughes & Winifred Agnew-Pauley highlight the need for significant reform to NSW drug policy.

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'It just gets bigger': Canberra sales surge for DIY pill-testing kits

'It just gets bigger': Canberra sales surge for DIY pill-testing kits | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
As the debate surrounding pill testing continues, many Canberrans are resorting to testing pills themselves.
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of community demand for access to information to help with informed decision making about drug consumption

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Teen girls influenced by fathers' heavy drinking (Aus)

Teen girls influenced by fathers' heavy drinking (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Teenage girls are more influenced by their fathers’ drinking habits than boys of the same age.
ReGenUC's insight:

Another reminder of the role parents play in shaping their children's AOD consumption patterns.

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The Defining Health Crisis of Our Time (Canada)

Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto's Medical Officer of Health, educates on the importance of harm reduction and why we need to rise up to support and care fo

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Recent (15 min) TEDx talk on the need for harm reduction to be at the centre of policy responses to opioid overdose risk.

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Our illicit drug splurge may top our cafe spend (Aus)

Our illicit drug splurge may top our cafe spend (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Wastewater treatment plants tests across the nation found Australians had consumed illegal drugs worth $9.3 billion in 2018.
ReGenUC's insight:

The headline is the estimated expenditure on illicit drugs, but the real story here could be the inclusion of cannabis for the first time in national wastewater analysis. This will help to address the previous imbalance in reporting on 'most used' illicits. You can see the full report here: http://sco.lt/54OI9w

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Labor frontbench to push for household limit on legal cannabis plants (ACT)

Labor frontbench to push for household limit on legal cannabis plants (ACT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The party will also flag plans to stop the drug being grown in community gardens, when the bill to legalise the drug returns to the ACT Legislative Assembly.
ReGenUC's insight:

Some of the likely ammendments to Michael Pettersson's private member's bill.

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Philadelphia Mulls Supervised Injections to Cut Drug Deaths

Philadelphia Mulls Supervised Injections to Cut Drug Deaths | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Similar program in Vancouver, Canada, has saved hundreds of drug addicts' lives over the past 16 years
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of progress in US harm reduction. The article also includes an interactive map, highlighting the jurisdictions where supervised injecting facilities have already received local approval, or are under consideration.

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Cannabis charges go up in smoke in Scotland as police revert to warnings

Cannabis charges go up in smoke in Scotland as police revert to warnings | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
About 500 people caught in possession of cannabis in Scotland each month are being let off with a warning rather than being referred to prosecutors, despite evidence linking the drug to depression and death.The disclosure has prompted criticism from anti-drugs campaigners as evidence of a “soft to
ReGenUC's insight:

Most of this article is behind a paywall, but it's good to see wider adoption of diversion measures which have been demonstrated to reduce negative outcomes for people who would otherwise received criminal charges for low-level drug offences.

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Over 100 drug dealers surrender in Bangladesh crackdown 

Over 100 drug dealers surrender in Bangladesh crackdown  | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
In 2018, Bangladesh launched a 'war on drugs' after the proliferation of illegal substances, mostly pills called 'yaba'.
ReGenUC's insight:

Following 'Philippines-style' killings and mass arrests (300 dead, 25k arrested).

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Pill testing: Drug users tell us what they really think (Aus)

Pill testing: Drug users tell us what they really think (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Recreational drug users and experts take us to the heart of the pill testing debate about whether attitudes can change and lives can be saved.
ReGenUC's insight:

Preview of tonight's Insight program on SBS. Good to see the voices of those directly affected by the issue being heard. See also the summary of last night's QANDA drug policy discussion: http://sco.lt/4urgEi 

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‘There’s no reason not to trial pill testing’: UNSW drug policy scholar stands firm on the evidence

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Interview with Alison Ritter on the repositioning of the Drug Policy Modelling Program within UNSW.

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Trump “Most Excited” About China Executing People for Selling Fentanyl

Trump “Most Excited” About China Executing People for Selling Fentanyl | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
President Trump has lauded the use of the death penalty for people convicted of drug offences, and claims to have convinced the Chinese president to execute people who
ReGenUC's insight:

Latest example of President Trump's support for the use of the death penalty, in spite of its demonstrated ineffectiveness in preventing drug trafficking and supply. See today's related coverage of the President's speech: http://sco.lt/7v5Le4

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I smoked pot but I don't want my children to (UK)

I smoked pot but I don't want my children to (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Some of the friends I used to get stoned with did end up depressed, paranoid or underachieving.
ReGenUC's insight:

Jemima Lewis reflects on her own experience & new evidence of links between cannabis & mental health.

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Inside the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court: Helping addicts help themselves (NZ)

Inside the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court: Helping addicts help themselves (NZ) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

The Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court supports users who want to break their habit. It's a successful system, so why might it be shut down, asks Paul Little.

ReGenUC's insight:

Extended piece on the potential impacts of a therapeutic jurisprudence approach to supporting recovery.

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QANDA Pill-Testing Special (Aus)

QANDA Pill-Testing Special (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Chief Superintendent Stuart Smith, NSW Acting Assistant Commissioner Kerryn Redpath, Author, drug educator and former drug user Dr David Caldicott, Pioneer of pill testing in Australia Dr Marianne Jauncey, Medical Director, Uniting Medically Supervised Injecting Centre Mick Palmer, Former AFP Commissioner
ReGenUC's insight:

Tonight sees the first of two national tv discussions of the need for pill-testing in Australia (the second will be on SBS' Insight program soon).

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No arrests, fines or stigma. Why we should legalise cannabis in Canberra

No arrests, fines or stigma. Why we should legalise cannabis in Canberra | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
My first experience with cannabis did not result in the attention of law enforcement. For many, this is not the case.
ReGenUC's insight:

Michael Petterson MLA discusses his Private Member's Bill and it's likely impacts on law enforcement and the justice system.

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