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Harm Reduction

US MD: Escape From Planet Earth: Psychedelics, Religion, and

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Wed, 08/17/2016 - 07:00
City Paper, 17 Aug 2016 - Most scientists don't include personal stories in their research reports, but for John Lilly, personal experiences and science experiments were the same thing. His ears, eyes, mouth, and nose were calibrated probes.
Categories: Harm Reduction

Philippines: Column: The Global Drug Wars Have Failed, How Can

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Mon, 08/15/2016 - 07:00
Manila Times, 15 Aug 2016 - Although President Duterte's police methods have drawn concern in various parts of the world, even those who deplore his methods at home are praying that his 'war on drugs' would somehow succeed. However, international experts who have done extensive studies on the global drug wars are deeply pessimistic; they describe the "war on drugs" as a failed strategy, and are calling for a major policy "rethink." These experts have not condemned the extrajudicial killings, the shoot-on-sight and "surrender or else" orders in the present drug war, as some UN officials, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and certain international publications have. Their studies precede DU30's war by at least a couple of years.
Categories: Harm Reduction

US MD: OPED: End The Stigma

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Sat, 08/13/2016 - 07:00
Baltimore Sun, 13 Aug 2016 - Parents of a young man who died of substance abuse urge others to talk about addiction before they, too, face tragedy Thank you to Amy Waldron for her letter ("Bringing addiction out of the shadows," July 28) regarding the death of our son, Alex Hoehn, from substance abuse.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Editorial: Time For Action On Harm Reduction

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Fri, 08/12/2016 - 07:00
The Burnaby Now, 12 Aug 2016 - Our hearts go out to the mother of 16-year-old Gwynevere Staddon, found dead of a suspected overdose in a Port Moody Starbucks on Sunday. The coroner has not confirmed fentanyl as the cause, since the tests take a while, but Gwyn's mom, Veronica, strongly suspects that's what took her daughter's life.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Abbotsford Council To Discuss Harm-Reduction Initiatives In

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Fri, 08/12/2016 - 07:00
Abbotsford News, 12 Aug 2016 - Braun says too early to say if safe injection site desired As communities around British Columbia continue to see startling numbers of opioid overdoses, Abbotsford council will discuss ongoing harm-reduction policies in the city this fall, Mayor Henry Braun said.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: IH To Set Up Safe Injection Site Here

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Fri, 08/12/2016 - 07:00
The Daily Courier, 12 Aug 2016 - Kelowna Mayor Says City Is Pleased With Effort to Address Surge in Fatal Drug Overdoses Establishing a safe injection site in Kelowna will save lives, says Mayor Colin Basran. "We believe that safe consumption sites are part of the spectrum of care for people in our community," said Basran. "People are dying, and safe consumption sites will stop people from dying."
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN AB: Needles, Syringes Found In Public Park Space

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Thu, 08/11/2016 - 07:00
Cochrane Eagle, 11 Aug 2016 - It's a rare occurrence for Cochrane park users to stumble across strewn syringes and hypodermic needles in a public area. Needless to say, it created concern for soccer player Lucy Lovelock when she came across a scattered pile of such paraphernalia in the soccer field parking lot in community of GlenEagles the evening of Aug. 2.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Editorial: Time For Action On Harm Reduction

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Thu, 08/11/2016 - 07:00
The Record, 11 Aug 2016 - Our hearts go out to the mother of 16-year-old Gwynevere Staddon, found dead of a suspected overdose in a Port Moody Starbucks on Sunday. The coroner has not confirmed fentanyl as the cause, since the tests take a while, but Gwyn's mom, Veronica, strongly suspects that's what took her daughter's life.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Column: Surrey Urgently Needs A Supervised Injection Site -

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Thu, 08/11/2016 - 07:00
The Now, 11 Aug 2016 - It's been more than a decade since North America's first legal supervised injection site opened its doors on the Downtown East Side and now debate is flying over whether Surrey should have its own. It should.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Rash Of Drug Overdoses Speeding Up Need For Local Safe

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Wed, 08/10/2016 - 07:00
Kelowna Capital News, 10 Aug 2016 - Kelowna could soon have a safe injection site, as Interior Health is pushing forward a multi-tiered plan to combat the mounting number of drug related overdoses. "We are as we speak conducting a survey with people who use drugs so they can provide input on the idea of a safe injection service," said Dr. Silvina Mema, Medical Health Officer with IHA, noting that the survey will identify the appetite for such a facility and best locations.
Categories: Harm Reduction

Chronicle AM: Gallup Finds MJ Users Nearly Double in Three Years, MO MedMJ Fights On, More... (8/8/16)

Harm Reduction (STDW) - Mon, 08/08/2016 - 20:53

A Gallup poll shows a dramatic increase in admitted marijuana use by adults, a Barna poll shows little support for drug prohibition, Garden State needle exchanges are scrambling for money after their funding was vetoed, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Gallup: Number of American Adult Marijuana Users Nearly Doubles in Three Years. A new Gallup poll reports that the number of people who smoke pot has nearly doubled since 2013. That year, 7% of adults said they were current marijuana users; this year, the number jumped to 13%. It's not clear whether or to what degree the reported sharp increase is attributable to an actual increase in regular marijuana users or whether it's because people are more willing to admit their pot use in an era of growing acceptance of marijuana and spreading legalization of the herb.

Medical Marijuana

Missouri Initiative Campaign Asks Court to Overturn Invalidated Signatures. New Approach Missouri announced Monday that it will go to court this month to overturn invalidated signatures so that its medical marijuana initiative can appear on the November ballot. The campaign has enough valid signatures to qualify in every congressional district except the state's second, where local election officials invalidated more than 10,000 signatures, leaving the campaign roughly 2,200 short of the 32,337 required in that district.

Drug Policy

Poll: Only One-Third Thinks All Drugs Should Be Illegal. A new poll from Barna, a firm that surveys on religious issues, finds that only 32% of respondents think all drugs should be illegal. Some 40% think hard drugs should be illegal, but not marijuana, while another 13% think all drugs should be legal and regulated and another 3% believe all drugs should be legal and should not be regulated. If you add those all up, it's 56% for marijuana legalization and 16% for legalizing all drugs.

Harm Reduction

New Jersey Needle Exchanges Are Strapped for Cash. The operators of the state's five needle exchange programs have launched an online fundraising drive this week with a GoFundMe account after a one-time federal grant has run out. Lawmakers had allocated $95,000 to cover program costs, but Gov. Chris Christie (R) line item vetoed that funding in June. "Our governor claims to be fiscally conservative and pro-life. So, how is it that he refuses to fund a simple, inexpensive, effective intervention that saves lives at significantly lower cost than the cost of medical care after a person has been infected with HIV or Hepatitis C or both?" said Diana McCague, the founder of the first underground needle exchange program in the mid-90s called The Chai Project. "Can it be that he's willing to risk the lives of human beings because they use drugs? I think 'pro-life' means pro-all-life."

Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Dangers Of Designer Drugs Front And Centre

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Fri, 08/05/2016 - 07:00
Nelson Star, 05 Aug 2016 - Stacey Lock has been working in the harm reduction tent at Shambhala Music Festival for eight years now, but she's never seen the party scene like this before. According to her the province-wide fentanyl emergency has everyone on edge, including the festival's organizers. "It's really affecting the party scene because it's changing the climate. It's getting sketchy. Not too long ago it felt like you could know what you were doing and if you didn't know we could tell you," Lock, who is the festival's harm reduction director, told the Star.
Categories: Harm Reduction

Chronicle AM: UN Agencies Condemn Philippine Killings, Huge Danish Consumption Room Opens, More... (8/4/16)

Harm Reduction (STDW) - Thu, 08/04/2016 - 20:36

UN drug agencies join civil society in condemning Philippine drug war killings, the world's largest drug consumption facility opens in Copenhagen, the California marijuana legalization initiative sues to have "false and misleading" ballot arguments removed, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

California Prop 64 Campaign Sues to Disallow "False, Misleading" Ballot Arguments. The Prop 64 marijuana legalization campaign filed a lawsuit in state superior court in Sacramento Thursday seeking to have what it calls false or misleading statements submitted by opponents removed from ballot arguments. Ballot arguments appear in the voter information guide. The campaign wants the judge to reject or amend a number of arguments, including one that claims children will be exposed to edibles advertising and one that claims Prop 64 will remove consumer protections, among others. All legal questions around ballot arguments must be settled by August 15.

Medical Marijuana

Arkansas Poll Has Support for Medical Marijuana at 58%. A new poll of likely voters has a healthy majority for medical marijuana, with 58% saying they support it. Voters will have a chance to signal that support at the polls in November, when the Arkansans for Compassionate Care initiative will appear on the ballot. A second medical marijuana initiative, the Arkansas Medical Cannabis Amendment, is still trying to qualify for the ballot and has received an extension to gather more signatures after coming up just short last month.

New Jersey Legislature Passes Bill to Make PTSD a Qualifying Condition. The Senate Tuesday gave final approval to Assembly Bill 457, which would allow people with PTSD to use medical marijuana. The bill now goes to Gov. Chris Christie (R), who has not indicated whether he will sign or veto it.

International

UN Drug Agencies Join Chorus of Critics of Philippines Drug Killings. In a statement Wednesday, UN Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) executive director Yuri Fedotov said he joined UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in "condemning the apparent endorsement of extrajudicial killings" of alleged drug users and dealers in the country under the new administration of President Rodrigo "Death Squad" Duterte. "[Extrajudicial killing] is illegal and a breach of fundamental rights and freedoms," he said. "Such responses contravene the provisions of the international drug control conventions, do not serve the cause of justice, and will not help to ensure that 'all people can live in health, dignity and peace, with security and prosperity,' as agreed by governments in the outcome document approved at the UN General Assembly special session on the world drug problem," he said. The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) likewise expressed its concern later the same day. In a written statement, the self-described "quasi-judicial" agency that monitors compliance with the drug conventions wrote that "should these reports prove accurate, this would constitute a serious breach of the legal obligations to which the Philippines is held by the three UN drug control conventions and by the corpus of international legal instruments to which the country has adhered."

World's Largest Drug Consumption Room Opens in Copenhagen. The drug consumption room is 1,000 square meters and includes space for both drug injecting and smoking. It is partially funded by the city of Copenhagen. Users at the site will also be able to engage with medical and social welfare services.

Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Editorial: Saving Lives Is Key

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Wed, 08/03/2016 - 07:00
North Shore News, 03 Aug 2016 - There are two major factors in the overdose epidemic that continues to ravage our province: fentanyl and shame. Fentanyl is exponentially more toxic than heroin. It's nearly impossible to detect in pills and powders. Still, it represents the simpler aspect of the problem. Greater vigilance by our border guards and increased restrictions around those who can buy a pill press would likely help keep large quantities of fentanyl off the street.
Categories: Harm Reduction

Chronicle AM: IL Gov Signs Decrim Bill, Marijuana Foes Pony Up to Fight Reform, More... (8/1/16)

Harm Reduction (STDW) - Mon, 08/01/2016 - 20:28

Your correspondent was on vacation last week, but drug policy and the drug war weren't. Illinois has decriminalized marijuana possession, Republicans are shifting on marijuana prohibition, Minnesotans with chronic pain now qualify for medical marijuana, Floridians can now get naloxone without an individualized prescription, and more.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Poll: Even Republicans Now Favor Marijuana Legalization. For the first time, a plurality if not a majority of people who identify as Republicans say they support marijuana legalization. A new YouGov poll has 45% of Republicans in favor, with 42% opposed. Only eight months ago, Republicans opposed legalization in the same poll, by a margin of 50% to 36%.

Pot Prohibitionists Put Up $2 Million to Fight Legalization. The political arm of the anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana has raised more than $2 million to fight legalization initiatives in five states this year, including California, where Prop 64 is on the November ballot. The bulk of the money will go to California. The group is led by former Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-Rhode Island) and former drug czar's office official Kevin Sabet.

Illinois Decriminalizes Marijuana. Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) last Friday signed into law Senate Bill 2228, which decriminalizes the possession of up to 10 grams of marijuana and creates a maximum fine of $200. The law goes into effect immediately, making Illinois the 21st state to have decriminalized small-time pot possession.

Massachusetts Legalization Initiative is Officially on the November Ballot. State officials last month quietly certified that the initiative from the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol has overcome the final hurdle to going before the voters in November. Advocates had to hand in a small number of signatures this summer when the legislature refused to act after the campaign handed in tens of thousands of signatures earlier this year. The initiative will be Question 4 on the November ballot.

Northern Marianas Could Vote on Legalization in November. A lawmaker in the US territory has pre-filed a bill that would let residents vote on legalization in November. Senator Sixto Igisomar is the man behind the move. The legislature must approve it by August 10 for it to make the ballot this year.

Medical Marijuana

Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment Initiative Gets More Time to Gather Signatures. Arkansans United for Medical Marijuana, the group behind the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment initiative, had come up short of the 82,000 valid voter signatures required to qualify for the November ballot, but it handed in 72,000 valid signatures, qualifying it for additional time to gather enough signatures to make the ballot. Another medical marijuana initiative, the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Act, has already qualified for the ballot.

Minnesota Chronic Pain Patients Now Qualify for Medical Marijuana. As of today, the state's medical marijuana program includes people suffering from chronic pain that is not eased by traditional drugs or therapies.

Harm Reduction

Florida Makes Opioid Overdose Reversal Drug Available Without Prescription. The overdose reversal drug naloxone (Narcan) is now available through a "standing order" from a doctor, meaning drugs users, friends, and family members no longer need an individual prescription to obtain the antidote. Additionally, the pharmacy chain CVS will begin stocking naloxone in all its pharmacies in the state beginning this month.

International

Italian Parliament Begins Debate on Marijuana Legalization.Last week, parliament began discussing whether to approve a marijuana legalization bill. The bill would allow for the possession of up to 15 grams at home and 5 grams on the street and let people grow up to five plants. It would also allow growing collectives of up to 50 growers. Rightist opponents of the measure have already filed more than 1,300 proposed amendments aimed at snuffing it. Debate on the bill will resume in September.

Indonesia Executes Four Drug Prisoners. Ignoring a growing global clamor against the practice, Indonesian authorities executed four convicted drug offenders last Friday. Ten others set to be executed at the same time won a temporary reprieve when a storm hit the island where the executions were taking place, but officials said they would be put to death later.

Categories: Harm Reduction

US ME: A Lifesaver for Heroin Users, but No Cure for an

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Sun, 07/31/2016 - 07:00
New York Times, 31 Jul 2016 - PORTLAND, Me. - A woman in her 30s was sitting in a car in a parking lot here last month, shooting up heroin, when she overdosed. Even after the men she was with injected her with naloxone, the drug that reverses opioid overdoses, she remained unconscious. They called 911. Firefighters arrived and administered oxygen to improve her breathing, but her skin had grown gray and her lips had turned blue. As she lay on the asphalt, the paramedics slipped a needle into her arm and injected another dose of naloxone.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Drug Group Sets Up Safe Injection Site In Whalley

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Fri, 07/29/2016 - 07:00
Surrey Leader, 29 Jul 2016 - A makeshift safe injection site has been set up in North Surrey, raising the ire of local organizations that are trying to create a permanent facility in Surrey. On Wednesday, a volunteer with a Vancouver support group for drug users set up a table on 135A Street to give people a safe place to inject their drugs.
Categories: Harm Reduction

US: Narcan Saves Lives But At A Cost

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Thu, 07/28/2016 - 07:00
Buffalo News, 28 Jul 2016 - Critics Say Drug Allows Addicts to Take More Risks PORTLAND, Maine - A woman in her 30s was sitting in a car in a parking lot here last month, shooting up heroin, when she overdosed. Even after the men she was with injected her with naloxone, the drug that reverses opioid overdoses, she remained unconscious. They called 911.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Editorial: Safe Site For Drugs Is Last Thing Surrey

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Thu, 07/28/2016 - 07:00
The Now, 28 Jul 2016 - Surrey's Mayor Linda Hepner has taken a lot of heat on social media and in the press for her reluctance to see a so-called "safe drug injection site" set up in her city, but we think she's the voice of reason on this matter. Health officials recently called for such a facility to be located in Surrey after numerous overdoses in Whalley occurred as a result of drug addicts unknowingly injecting fentanyl, along with heroin, into their veins.
Categories: Harm Reduction

CN BC: Surrey Gets 'Pop-Up' Safe Injection Site

Harm Reduction (MAP) - Thu, 07/28/2016 - 07:00
Metro, 28 Jul 2016 - Unsanctioned Tent a Response to Overdoses, Mayor's Rebuff Only hours before the B.C. government announced a new high-level task force to curb skyrocketing overdose deaths, a small ragtag group took action themselves in one of the Lower Mainland's injection-drug hot spots.
Categories: Harm Reduction
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