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RecoveryPlus1

Recovery Plus News: stories symbolising trends to watch All US presidential candidates talk drugs With only months until November’s presidential election to the White House and as the US addiction epidemic receives growing attention from both public and policymakers, MAP’s 2015 Recovery Network National Addiction and Recovery Survey found that 73% of US voters favour a presidential candidate willing to expand access to addiction treatment and recovery services (https://thisismap.com/wp-content/ uploads/2015/11/2015_National_Addiction_and_Recovery_ Survey_by_MAP_Recovery_Network.pdf). All the presidential candidates foresaw the trend. Last August, when Hillary Rodham Clinton, Jeb Bush and Carly Fiorina made inaugural visits as presidential candidates, the first question they were asked was about New Hampshire’s opioid epidemic. Last October, ex-congressman Patrick Kennedy, Policy Exchange chairman David Frum and Kevin Sabet, cofounders of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, ranked 18 candidates on their support for a comprehensive, evidence-based marijuana policy. They identified Marco Rubio, Chris Christie and Ben Carson as the best runners, with Bernie Sanders and Rand Paul as the worst (https://learnaboutsam.org/ wp-content/uploads/2015/10/29Oct2015-SAM-presidentialscorecard updated-for-distribution.pdf). Amid the political mishigas came Chris Christie’s now well-known speech which rocketed him up the rankings – he talked about the lack of stigma against his mother’s addiction to smoking vs the judgment about his friend from law school who was addicted to opiates. Author Anna David gives a good summary and links to Christie, Carson et al at www.huffingtonpost. com/anna-david/do-we-only-have-one-presidential-candidatewho understands-addiction_b_8526032.html. But how well will the politicians’ words serve their electorate? How much do they understand about how recovery is achieved? Will they play into pharmaceutical interests? With Clinton’s biggest campaign donor, George Soros, pushing marijuana legalisation, will she open the gateway to Big Pot? (http://blog.sfgate.com/smellthetruth/2016/02/16/hillaryclintons biggest-campaign-donor-supports-marijuana-legalization). Judge for yourself – presidential candidates’ comments on drugs and mental health are available at www.refinery29.com/2016/02/102841/2016-presidentialcandidates statements-drugs-mental-health#slide. We like the last three of these best, including Carson’s “Regular exposure to marijuana in the developing brain has been demonstrated definitively to result in a decreased IQ. And the last thing we need is a bunch of people running around with decreased IQ”. Drugs legalisation: the fallout Anyone debating the heated issue of legalisation of marijuana and other drugs should first read local facts from the Pulitzer Prize-winning Gazette. Separating fact from fiction, it covers regulation, crime, youthful addiction and medical marijuana. “The ugly truth is that Colorado was suckered. It was promised regulation and has been met by an industry that fights tooth and nail any restrictions that limit its profitability” is a conclusion (http://gazette.com/clearingthehaze). Rocky Mountain High also reveals post-legalisation pot use figures ( www.dbrecoveryresources.com/wp-content/ uploads/2016/01/FINAL-NSDUH-Results-Jan-2016-Release.pdf). Smart Approaches to Marijuana published the fact-based Big Marijuana Claims Vs The Science (https://learnaboutsam.org/the-issues/big-marijuana-claims-vs-the-science). Finally, in the UK, a rigorous 10-year followup of the Lambeth depenalisation of cannabis revealed increased crime and hospitalisations: a warning to be heeded (www.dbrecoveryresources.com/2014/04/crime-and-the-depenalisation-of-pot). your library’s essential reference Feb 2016 11


RecoveryPlus1
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