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July 10, 2015

AUSTRALIAN WINTER SCHOOL CONFERENCE: 22 - 24 JULY 2015

The Australian Winter School Conference is fast approaching, being held in Brisbane from the 22nd - 24th of July. The theme of this year's conference is "Unleash potential" and includes streams including young people, early intervention / prevention, the justice system, domestic and family violence and lots more. The Australian Winter School is one of the rare opportunities for workers from around Queensland to get together and hear the latest from some of the best speakers in the field.  There is still time to register but it's running out fast, so get it together now!

Find out more at the Australian Winter School website.

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July 10, 2015

PREVENTING CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE

The Australian Institute of Family Studies has published a research report titled "Conceptualising the prevention of child sexual abuse".  The report considers conceptual, policy and practice challenges to preventing sexual abuse as well as future directions for prevention activities. It attempts to use a public health framework for considering child sexual abuse prevention - considering primary, secondary and tertiary prevention activities.

Go to "Conceptualising the prevention of child sexual abuse"

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July 10, 2015

WORKING WITH AFRICAN COMMUNITIES TO REDUCE ALCOHOL RELATED HARMS

The NSW-based Hunter Multicultural Drug Action Team and the Drug and Alcohol Multicultural Education Centre (DAMEC) have published "Confident Communities: A guide to working together with African communities to reduce alcohol-related harms."  The toolkit was developed by reviewing the literature around culturally sensitive engagement strategies and combined with consultations with African community members from New South Wales.  It includes an overview of the process for engaging community members, developing strategies and evaluating impacts.

Go to "Confident Communities: A guide to working together with African communities to reduce alcohol-related harms."

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July 3, 2015

UNDERSTANDING AND RESPONDING TO STEROID USE

The National Drug Research Institute and Monash University have published the outcomes of a national consultation around steroid use, titled "Understanding and responding to the rise of steroid injecting in Australia".  The authors found that there are significant gaps in knowledge about steroid use, as well as a lack of integration of harm reduction messages.  The authors also found that there have been some recent policy, legal and regulatory responses to steroid use which have been implemented too hastily, without an evidence base and that some of these policy responses may in fact increase harms to people who use steroids.

Download "Understanding and responding to the rise of steroid injecting in Australia" (1.3MB PDF)

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July 3, 2015

PROBLEMATIC SUBSTANCE USE AND ITS IMPACT ON SIBLINGS

The Australian Institute of Family Studies "Family Matters" publication has recently published a research report titled "Challenges in the family: Problematic substance use and sibling relationships."  Thirteen women aged between 21 and 56 years old who have a sibling with a current or historical AOD problem were interviewed about their experiences. Three major themes emerged from the interviews including themes around family strengths, family challenges, and support.  The voices of the family members come through the report, giving an excellent insight into the impact of substance use on family members.

Go to "Challenges in the family: Problematic substance use and sibling relationships."

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July 3, 2015

NAIDOC WEEK 2015: 5 - 12 JULY

The annual NAIDOC Week commences on the 5th of July, with events planned right around Queensland and Australia.  The theme of the 2015 NAIDOC Week is "We all stand on sacred ground: Learn, respect and celebrate."  The NAIDOC website has a calendar of events as well as NAIDOC merchandise.  Get involved in NAIDOC events in your community!

Go the the NAIDOC 2015 website.

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June 26, 2015

SUPPORTING PREGNANT WOMEN WHO USE ALCOHOL AND OTHER DRUGS

The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) has published a research report titled "Supporting pregnant women who use alcohol and other drugs: A review of evidence", along with a guide for primary health care professionals and a quick guide flow-chart for identifying and responding to women who might be using alcohol, tobacco or other drugs during pregnancy.  The review of evidence covers a broad range of issues from screening, assessment, interventions and workforce development.  The quick guide is designed to be posted in health services, providing workers with a visual guide to using AUDIT-C and providing a brief intervention.

Go to "Supporting pregnant women who use alcohol and other drugs: A review of evidence"

Go to "Supporting pregnant women who use alcohol and other drugs: A guide for primary health care professionals"

Go to "Quick guide: Identifying women at risk from alcohol, smoking or other drug use during pregnancy"



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June 26, 2015

DRUGINFO: INHALANTS

The Australian Drug Foundation in conjunction with the Central Australian Youth Link-Up Service (CAYLUS) has developed a new website specifically addressing inhalant use.  The site contains information on inhalants including fact sheets and online resources, but also information on the legal status of inhalants throughout Australia, reducing inhalant demand, harm and supply, helping a friend and finding a service.  Inhalant use continues to be an issue in many parts of Queensland and this resource will be very useful for workers trying to access quality information.

Go to DrugInfo: Inhalants

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June 26, 2015

INCREASE IN ADVERSE HEALTH EVENTS RELATED TO SYNTHETIC CANNABINOIDS

The Unites States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has published a report describing increasing adverse events associated with synthetic cannabis products from January to May this year.  The report describes a significant increase in phone calls to "Poison Centres" across this United States, with 349 phone calls received regarding synthetic cannabis products in January 2015, rising to 1501 phone calls in April 2015.  The most commonly reported adverse health effects were agitation, tachycardia and drowsiness.  Of the calls received between January and May, 2961 had a medical outcome recorded - 11.3% recording a major adverse event (life threatening or resulting in substantial disability).

Go to "Notes from the Field: Increase in reported adverse health effects related to synthetic cannabinoid use - United States, january - May 2015"

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June 26, 2015

WORKING WITH PEOPLE BEREAVED THROUGH SUBSTANCE USE

The University of Bath in the United Kingdom has published a document designed to support adults experiencing grief due to substance use.  "Bereaved through substance use: Guidelines for those whose work brings them into contact with adults bereaved after a drug or alcohol-related death" contains useful suggestions for workers - including understanding the grief process, using appropriate language and practical strategies to provide support.  The guide includes stories from people experiencing grief to help illustrate good practice.

Download "Bereaved through substance use: Guidelines for those whose work brings them into contact with adults bereaved after a drug or alcohol-related death" (2.3MB PDF)

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