Table

Participants were asked to score each substance for each of these nine parameters, using a four-point scale, with 0 being no risk, 1 some, 2 moderate and 3 extreme risk. For some analyses eg Table 3 , the scores for the three parameters for each category were averaged to give a mean score for that category. An overall harm rating was obtained by taking the mean of all nine scores. The scoring procedure was piloted by members of the panel of the Independent Inquiry into the MDAct (the Runciman...

Consideration of harm

The ACMD is required to examine harm associated with the drugs that it considers but, as DrugScope pointed out, there is no definition of harm provided in the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.32 In addition, some have argued that the debate around harm too frequently focuses on the inherent harmfulness of the drug itself, rather than on the wider question of harm associated with misuse of the drug. For example, the risk of HIV or hepatitis infection is linked to drug injecting, as opposed to the...

Gateway theory

The 'gateway theory' refers to the concept that cannabis use in some way predisposes individuals and is therefore a gateway to subsequent use of 'harder' drugs. The theory is predicated on the observation that many users of Class A drugs have used cannabis before moving onto these drugs. Professor John Strang, Director of the National Addiction Centre, emphasised the importance of establishing whether the relationship between cannabis use and Class A drug use was causal. He told us It is a...

Memorandum from the Maranatha Community in association with the Council for Health and Wholeness

This document has been prepared in response to the call for evidence by the House of Commons Select Committee on Science and Technology on Scientific advice, risk and evidence how government handles them. This submission has been addressed to Mr Phil Willis, Chairman, Select Committee on Science and Technology. Email scitechcom parliament.uk phone 020 7219 2793. The Maranatha Community is a Christian movement with many thousands of members throughout the country active in all the main churches....

ABC classification system

The ABC classification system was designed to make it possible to control particular drugs according to their comparative harmfulness either to individuals or to society at large when they were misused.6 The ABC system has its origins in the Misuse of Drugs Act (MDA) 1971, which introduced the concept of 'controlled drugs' and (as amended) constitutes the main piece of legislation regulating the availability and use of these drugs. The purpose of the Act was to provide a coherent framework for...

Memorandum from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs ACMD

1.1 The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (the Council) was established, as a non-departmental public body, by the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (the Act). Its current membership is shown in Annex A. 1.2 The Council's terms of reference are set out in the Act as follows It shall be the duty of the Advisory Council to keep under review the situation in the United Kingdom with respect to drugs which are being or appear to them likely to be misused and of which the misuse is having or appears to...

Magic mushrooms

Magic mushrooms contain psilocin and psilocybin, naturally-occurring compounds with hallucinogenic properties. Psilocin and psilocybin were designated Class A drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, apparently on account of their hallucinogenic properties. Psilocin is also listed under Schedule I, the highest level of prohibition, under the UN's Convention on Psychotropic Substances 1971.94 Sir Michael Rawlins, Chairman of the ACMD, told us I have no idea what was going through the minds...

Memorandum from the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies MAPS

This submission comes from the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), a United States nonprofit organization whose mission is to develop Schedule I substances that may have medical or psychotherapeutic benefits into prescription medicines. This mission has made us familiar with the process in the United States for gathering scientific evidence relating to the classification of illegal drugs, and the ways that this evidence is and is not incorporated into public policy...

Ecstasy and amphetamines

Amphetamines fall into Class A or B according to their method of preparation. Ecstasy or MDMA 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine is a so-called 'substituted amphetamine' and, along with the other substituted amphetamine MDA 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine , is a Class A drug. Amphetamine and its derivatives are collectively known as 'phenylamphetamines' and include methylamphetamine, also known as methamphetamine. Phenylamphetamines have common properties but can also differ in their effects....