A- A A+

Kanada. B.C. doctors upset their ‘safe supply' of heroin going unprescribed during overdose crisis 

The doctors are asking the Ministry of Health to fund heroin-assisted treatment for 200 British Columbians at an average cost of $25 a day. (Vancouver Sun, Kanada, 15.12.2021)


UNODC. Response to the Opioid Crisis

Unted Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 2021/22


USA. San Francisco Declares State Of Emergency In Drug-Ridden Tenderloin

San Francisco Mayor London Breed on Friday declared a state of emergency in the city’s Tenderloin neighborhood, aiming to combat a rise in crime, drug use and homelessness there, days after she called for an increase in funding for police overtime to flood the area with officers. (FORBES, 17.12.2021)


USA/NY. Overdose Prevention Centers Averted 59 Overdoses in First Three Weeks of Operation

The Health Department today announced that, in the first three weeks of operation, staff at the two Overdose Prevention Centers (OPCs) in New York City, operated by OnPoint NYC, averted at least 59 overdoses to prevent injury and death. In the first three weeks of operation, the centers have been used more than 2,000 times. (NYC Health, 21.12.2021)


UK. How Peter Krykant Tackled the UK Drug Death Crisis (Video)

Peter Krykant talks about why he bought an old ambulance and set up an overdose prevention facility. (Transform Drug Policy Foundation, UK, 10.01.2022, Video, 02:19)


Irland. Opioids in Ireland: Are we heading towards a US-style crisis? 

There was a suggestion at a Medical Council working group that Ireland could experience an opioid addiction crisis as has occurred in the US. Catherine Reilly reports on the group’s discussions and concerns, which includes the lack of private prescribing data. (The Medical Independent, Irland, 11.01.2022)


Brasilien. How Brazil's Port of Santos Became Cocaine's World Trade Center

Three shipments of cocaine were caught on the same day as they were about to head to France, Spain and Ghana. All originated from the Brazilian port of Santos, from where cocaine shipments radiate around the world. (Insight Crime, USA, 13.01.2022)


USA. One Pill Can Kill - DEA Reveals Criminal Drug Networks Are Flooding the U.S. with Deadly Fentanyl

Criminal drug networks are mass-producing fake pills and falsely marketing them as legitimate prescription pills to deceive the American public. 

Counterfeit pills are easy to purchase, widely available, often contain fentanyl or methamphetamine, and can be deadly. 

Fake prescription pills are easily accessible and often sold on social media and e-commerce platforms, making them available to anyone with a smartphone, including minors. 

Many counterfeit pills are made to look like prescription opioids such as oxycodone (Oxycontin®, Percocet®), hydrocodone (Vicodin®), and alprazolam (Xanax®); or stimulants like amphetamines (Adderall®). (DEA – Drug Enforcement Administration, USA, 23.12.2021)


Libanon. Libanesischer Zoll findet neun Millionen Captagon-Tabletten in Orangenkisten 

Keine Zitrusfrüchte, sondern Drogen: Im Hafen von Beirut hat der Zoll knapp neun Millionen Pillen des Aufputschmittels Captagon gefunden. Ziel der Lieferung war offenbar das Emirat Kuwait. (Spiegel online, 29.12.2021)


Argentinien. The women filling jails in Argentina for drug offences – a photo essay

Nearly half the female prisoners in Argentina are serving time for drug possession. Photographer Magalí Druscovich visited the Unit 47 prison in Buenos Aires to find out their stories. (The Guardian, UK, 07.01.2022)


‘We’re making harm reduction cool’: overdose reversal Narcan becomes a rave essential

As recreational drugs like cocaine are increasingly cut with fentanyl, a movement has sprung up to prevent deaths in nightclubs. (The Guardian, UK, 31.12.2021)


USA. NYC Vending Machines to Distribute Free Naloxone and Other Supplies

Before the end of 2022, New York City residents should be able to access naloxone, sterile syringes and other harm reduction supplies from a handful of public vending machines—for free. It’s a new approach from the city, where drug overdoses are continuing to rise, especially for Black residents. (Filter, USA, 06.01.2022)


USA. Judge Overturns Purdue Pharma’s Opioid Settlement

The ruling said the company’s owners, members of the Sackler family, could not receive protection from civil lawsuits in return for a $4.5 billion contribution. (New York Times, USA, 16.12.2021)


USA. Teva Pharmaceuticals found liable in New York opioid trial

A New York jury has found that drug maker Teva Pharmaceuticals and its affiliates helped fuel an opioid epidemic in the US state. (BBC, UK, 30.12.2021)


USA. Opioid-Klagen: Gericht kippt Milliardenvergleich mit Purdue Pharma

New York – Ein Gericht in New York hat einen monatelang ausgehandelten Milliardenvergleich um die massenhafte Verschreibung von Schmerzmitteln vorerst gekippt. (aerzteblatt.de, 20.12.2021)


Die Welt gegen COVID-19 impfen

Berlin – 55,3 Prozent der Weltbevölkerung haben mindestens eine Impfdosis gegen SARS-CoV-2 erhalten, 8,28 Milliarden Dosen wurden weltweit insgesamt verimpft und jeden Tag kommen 32,71 Millionen Dosen hinzu. Das berichtet die Initiative „Our World in Data“ (Daten mit Stand 8. Dezember 2021). (aerzteblatt.de, 09.12.2021)


SAMHSA Weighs Permanent Methadone Take-Homes, Decades Too Late

In March 2020, to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infections among patients and staff, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) made an unprecedented decision that made it a whole lot easier to get take-home doses of methadone. They issued temporary guidelines allowing clinics to dispense 28 days of take-home doses to “stable” patients and 14 for less “stable” patients. Normally, to methadone patients’ chagrin, it can take years to “earn” this many take-homes. (Filter, USA, 15.12.2021)


USA. To save lives, overdose antidote should be sold over-the-counter, advocates argue

Louise Vincent figures her group, the North Carolina Survivors Union, saves at least 1,690 lives a year.

The harm-reduction and syringe service program in Greensboro, N.C., distributes the opioid overdose reversal medication naloxone to people who use drugs. Research suggests this approach is effective, since people who use drugs are most likely to witness an overdose and administer naloxone. (npr – National Public Radio, USA, 14.12.2021)


Schweiz. Methadon-Überdosis: 5 Jahre und 7 Monate Gefängnis für Drogentod von Mädchen (15) gefordert

Am Mittwoch haben die Staatsanwaltschaft sowie auch die Verteidiger ihre Plädoyers zum Todesfall einer 15-Jährigen gehalten. Sie starb 2019 an einer Überdosis Methadon, die ihr ein heute 23-Jähriger gegeben haben soll. (28 Minuten, Schweiz, 15.12.20219


Malta. Maltas Parlament billigt Cannabis für Eigenbedarf

Valletta – Malta hat als erstes EU-Land den Konsum von Cannabis und dessen Anbau für den Eigen­bedarf gebilligt. Das Parlament in Valletta stimmte gestern für ein Gesetz, das Erwachsenen den Besitz von bis zu sieben Gramm Cannabis sowie den Anbau von bis zu vier Pflanzen erlaubt. Das Gesetz, das mit 36 zu 27 Stimmen verabschiedet wurde, legalisiert jedoch nicht den Handel mit der Droge. (aerzteblatt.de, 15.12.2021)


Coordinating cannabis data collection globally: Policy implications. 

Weiss, SRB, Volkow, ND. 

Addiction. 2021; 1– 2. doi.org/10.1111/add.15751


USA. Opioid-Hersteller Name des Sackler-Clans verschwindet aus dem Metropolitan Museum 

Museen wie der Louvre hatten den Namen der Sacklers nach dem Skandal um das süchtig machende Schmerzmittel ihrer Firma bereits getilgt. Erst jetzt folgt das Metropolitan in New York. Der Clan war ein großer Spender. (Spiegel online, 10.12.2021)


China/USA. Opioidkrise: China verurteilt US-Sanktionen

Peking – China hat die im Zusammenhang mit der Opioidkrise in den USA verhängten Sanktionen gegen Hersteller von Schmerzmitteln in der Volksrepublik verurteilt. China lehne die Strafmaßnahmen der USA „entschieden ab“, sagte Außenamtssprecher Wang Wenbin heute in Peking. (aerzteblatt.de, 16.12.2021)


USA/China. US sanctions Chinese drugmakers amid addiction epidemic

Biden administration targets four chemical companies and man said to be world’s leading producer of anabolic steroids. (The Guardian, UK, 15.12.2021)


Afghanistan. Meth and heroin fuel Afghanistan drugs boom

(…) Drugs are big business in Afghanistan, and under the Taliban, trade is booming. The country has long been linked with heroin, but in recent years, it has also emerged as a significant producer of crystal meth - another dangerously addictive drug. 

One source involved in the trade says that about 3,000kg of crystal meth are now manufactured every day by more than 500 makeshift "factories" in a single remote drug-producing district in the south-west of the country. 

The rise of meth has been fuelled by a discovery that ephedra - a common, wild herb known locally as "oman" - can be used to make one of the drug's key ingredients: ephedrine. (BBC, UK, 12.12.2021)


Afghanistan. Afghanistan: heroin and human trafficking are the only two sectors of the economy still thriving

(…) The trade in drugs and people are growing in importance as other sectors of the economy contract or shut down and poverty deepens.

Both illicit economies involve complex logistics, infrastructure and networks of brokerage to enable and funnel flows of people or illegal drugs out of the country. Both have responded with remarkable speed and agility to the political rupture marked by the Taliban takeover. (Conversation, UK, 13.12.2021)


Ending human rights abuses in drug control: Oral statement to the Interactive Dialogue with the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention at HRC47 (July 2, 2021Index Number: IOR 40/4369/2021)

Amnesty International welcomes the study prepared by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention relating to drug policies (A/HRC/47/40), which provides an important contribution to the understanding of the widespread human rights violations that are facilitated by drug control regimes and provides fundamental recommendations to transform drug laws and policies to ensure they protect people, not harm them. (amnesty international, UK, 02.07.2021)


On International Human Rights Day, UN drugs body silences UN human rights expert on ground-breaking report

Friday, 10 December 2021 (Vienna, Austria) - In an unprecedented, last-minute decision, the lead UN drugs body has blocked the presentation of a report from a group of independent human rights experts that calls out governments for serious human rights abuses committed in the war on drugs. IDPC, 10.12.2021)


Kolumbien. How Pablo Escobar’s ‘cocaine hippos’ became a biodiversity nightmare (Podcast)

Animals brought illegally to Colombia by the drug kingpin have been allowed to roam free and are now disrupting the fragile ecosystem. (The Guardian, UK, 13.12.2021, Podcast, 25:28)


The War on Drugs Project

In 2020, CMWSS hosted a symposium csa to the newly published volume The War on Drugs: A History, edited by David Farber, and features material created by Clark Terrill and designed by Marjorie Galelli. It includes a teaching guide for each chapter, containing both questions and a list of key terms and themes; a timeline for the war on drugs; and a list of primary sources useful for teaching about this topic. (The Center for Military, War, and Society Studies, USA, 2021)