Dan Butcher, Founder of The Recovery Network an online social networking website for those affected by addiction, agrees with Gordon Brown’s upcoming ruling to regrade cannabis as a class B drug. It sends out the message that drugs are dangerous and linked to crime. The downgrade to a class C drug in 2004 coincided with an increase in drug-related crime and several cannabis related murders. The ingredients and strength of the drug today, bear no comparison to that of the drug widely used in the 70’s which is clearly evident in the rise of cases linking cannabis to mental health issues.
Recovering addict Dan Butcher says, ‘‘Many of our members have been affected either directly or indirectly by the devastating implications of cannabis addiction’. ‘we currently have over 2000 members on our website and many of these people’s lives, along with the lives of their loved ones have been destroyed by taking this drug. It is common to hear members talking on our website about how they ended up in acute mental hospitals undergoing treatment for cannabis induced schizophrenia and psychosis. Furthermore, it is clear that a great deal of our members used cannabis as a ‘gateway’ drug, which led on to other substances such as crack cocaine or heroin.’’
Deirdre Boyd from Addiction Today also urges that representation for people in recovery should be mandated on bodies such as the ACMD, and these representatives should be both in recovery and have relevant professional expertise. Certainly, a more balanced view is needed.
Gordon Brown’s ruling on the subject is therefore held favorably among the Recovery Community as they believe the Government’s panel of experts are not taking into account all the factors.
There are two barriers to this argument. The most obvious is that cannabis available 35 or so years ago was 7-12 times weaker than the product available today. It might have the same name but this study is NOT comparing like with like.
The other barrier is that it ignores research showing than cannabis abusers quadruple their risk of heart attack in the first hour after smoking, that cannabis smokers have more lung health problems than tobacco smokers, that it impairs the immune system, that depression and anxiety and personality disturbances are linked with chronic marijuana use, that it hinders the ability to learn and remember information and thus school and job prospects, that it adversely affects babies of pregnant women, that it affects the reproductive systems of both men and women.
About the Recovery Network:
The Recovery Network is an online social networking and educational service that is available 24-7 to support those affected by addiction whether directly or indirectly. The website offers a supportive environment for addicts, recovering addicts and the friends and families of both around various addictions such as alcohol, drugs, gambling, sex & love and co dependency. For more information please visit www.trntv.co.uk. Charity Addiction Recovery Foundation are also available to provide support and more information can be found at www.addictiontoday.org.
Daniel Butcher, Recovering Addict and Founder of The Recovery Network and Deirdre Boyd, CEO of the charity Addiction Recovery Foundation and Editor of Addiction Today will be available for interview to discuss the drug and its effects on individuals and society.
For more information or to set up at interview please contact:
0845 225 1500
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