The impact and challenges of ‘legal highs’ will be discussed at a conference hosted by the Centre for Youth & Criminal Justice (CYCJ) on Monday, December 8.
New psychoactive substances (legal highs) are used like illegal drugs, but not covered by current misuse of drugs laws. Although these drugs are marketed as legal substances, this doesn’t mean that they are safe or approved for people to use. Despite their ‘legal’ status, legal highs carry serious health risks, and have already been proven to have damaging and long-lasting effects on people’s lives and wellbeing.
The ‘Legal doesn’t mean safe – new drugs, new challenges’ conference will consider legal highs and their effect on young people’s lives from various perspectives, including health, policing and politics.
George Allan, Chair of the Scottish Drugs Forum Board, will chair the conference. He said:
“New psychoactive substances are a significant issue for the social care sector. New drugs bring new challenges such as increased availability and affordability of a range of compounds, in addition to this there is a lack of robust evidence based on the potential harms and risks. It is key that services come together to share knowledge and practice in order to respond more effectively to this emerging issue.”
Katy MacLeod of the Scottish Drugs Forum will be keynote speaker. She will be joined by Michael Miller of Police Scotland and Dr Richard Stevenson, Emergency Medical Consultant at the Western Infirmary.
Workshops will be given by experts on sexual health, blood-borne viruses through needle exchange and mental health and addictions. Delegates will have the opportunity for further debate and discussion during a panel session.