The Battle Against Legal Highs

The Battle Against Legal Highs

This evening, BBC One will screen a Panorama documentary called 'The Battle Against Legal Highs'. This is the story of how DHI helped reduce the harm from Novel Psychoactive Substances (formerly known as legal highs) locally, by working with business owners.

With increasing use of Novel Psychoactive Substances or ‘legal highs’ among the young, and the associated dangers of taking these drugs, DHI identified a need to educate the public, and in particular club drug users.

Our South Gloucestershire drug treatment service contacted the owner of Chasers Nightclub in Kingswood and offered free training to their staff to help them to understand the dangers of NPS use, recognise what the substances look like and support them to feel comfortable to identify and deal with clients effectively who look like they may be under the influence. Although Chasers takes a zero tolerance approach to allowing drugs on the premises, they also recognised that some of their clientele will use drugs such as NPS, and that it would be irresponsible to ignore this likelihood. Since customer safety is a priority for Chasers, we agreed to attend the club on a Friday evening to talk to their customers around harm reduction.

As a result of our strong links with the club, the logo for our NPS service, SPACED, is now featured on the security staff uniforms and staff direct those they either suspect of using or ban for use, to the website and organisation for support.

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