A LEADING consultant has said Scotland is ideally placed to lead the debate on drug policy reform, as he appealed to users in Lothian to take part in a global survey.
Dr Adam Winstock, founder of the Global Drug Survey and a consultant addiction psychiatrist, is due to speak in the Capital today at a “cannabis masterclass” at the City Chambers, organised by the Crew 2000 charity.
Speaking ahead of the event, Dr Winstock said that while drugs classification remains a power reserved by Westminster, he believes Scotland is “more forward-thinking” around health policy regarding drugs and alcohol.
He said: “Heavy cannabis use can ruin people’s lives – that’s not in dispute. But the question the government needs to ask is whether a change in the law would make things better or worse. If a change in the law meant people would smoke more it would be a real problem. But if it meant people that didn’t smoke still didn’t and those that did felt more comfortable talking about problems, that would be positive.
“It would be lovely to live in a world where drugs laws are guided by science and research, but they will only change when politicians think they are vote-winners.
“My interest is in providing information to people who use drugs, the wider public, healthcare providers and politicians and let it inform public health responses.”
To take part in the Global Drugs Survey, visit www.globaldrugsurvey.com.
Dr Winstock advised anyone worried about their drug or alcohol use to visit www.drugsmeter.com.