Laura Sharman 06 March 2020

Service reform needed to tackle persistent use of Spice within homeless population

Service reform needed to tackle persistent use of Spice within homeless population image

Legislation has failed to reduce the use of Spice by homeless people, a new study has concluded.

Research from Manchester Metropolitan University has found that legislation such as banning the sale of ‘legal highs’ has failed to reduce its popularity within the homeless population due to its high potency and low price.

The researchers spoke to homeless people about why they took Spice and the harms associated with its use, and concluded that service reform was the best way to tackle the persistent use of the drug.

Dr Paul Gray, report co-author and senior lecturer in criminology at Manchester Metropolitan, said: ‘Despite the 2016 Psychoactive Substances Act leading to the demise of high street outlets selling new psychoactive substances in the UK, Spice remains easily accessible to the homeless population.

’As was the case in Poland and Ireland, rather than reducing use, tougher legislation has simply displaced Spice from the high street to the illegal street market.’

The report argues that service reform should prioritise improved access to medically supervised community detox and in-patient rehabilitation for dependent Spice users. It also recommends treatment services address both mental health problems and substance use.

The power of local systems to save lives image

The power of local systems to save lives

Councils and their partners could do even more to contain the spread of COVID-19 if properly funded to undertake a robust localised system of testing, tracking and tracing, argues Professor Donna Hall.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Team Manager - Children in Care -North Essex

Essex County Council
Negotiable
At Essex County Council (ECC) we are "Serious about Social Work". Having won the Best Social Work Employer of the Year Award and been awarded 'Outsta England, Essex, Colchester
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Community Short Breaks Workers

City of York Council
£12.58 per hour (plus  enhancements)
We are seeking staff to work various hours, mostly during evenings, weekends and throughout school holidays, to suit the children and their families. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Senior Legal Officer Social Services - Adult

City of York Council
£30,500 to £34,797 per annum
We have a rare opportunity for a senior legal officer to join our social services team. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Senior Social Workers x2 - Family Support & Protection

Essex County Council
£39168 - £47405 per annum + Plus Excellent Benefits Package
We are looking for an experienced, motivated and creative social worker to join our team. England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Senior Legal Officer Social Services - Child

City of York Council
£30,500 to £34,797 per annum
We have a rare opportunity for a senior legal officer to join our social services team. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue