- Category: News
Hi. My name is Viggo Lütcherath and I am a 54 year old man and new chairman of the board for ECAD. I am married and have four children. I have known ECAD for some years during my political work in the Board of Health and Social Services in my hometown Kristiansand in Norway, where I represent the Christian Democratic Party.
My interest in drug policy comes from my professional work as a medical doctor specialised in Paediatrics at the public hospital in Kristiansand where I also work as a Senior Consultant. For many years I have seen new born babies suffering from abstinence due to their mother’s drug abuse. These babies inspire me to be part of the work to build drug-free societies. There are many ways to do that and the road is long. But it is important, just like in traffic, to set a zero vision of no one killed or suffering from drug abuse. It is an ambitious and important vision.
The fact that the legal "drug industry" is using a lot of money and manpower to legalise and enlarge drug markets further convinces me that governments, cities and communities must unite to address their drug problems. One of the most pressing challenges for our European Cities is to counteract the legalization of cannabis. More and more new knowledge about the dangers of cannabis is available. ECAD can be a channel to spread this knowledge.
It is our imperative to continuously prevent young people from start using drugs, to counteract legalization and to spread knowledge on the health consequences of using illicit drugs. I hope even more cities will find the ECAD network useable as a platform. If we work together, we can be more powerful and inspire each other to make good decisions based on solid knowledge. ECAD is, and will continue to be, a network of European towns that stand together and inspire each other to continuously fight drug abuse and build drug free societies.
I look forward to be in charge of ECAD and look forward to work together with all the good people in ECAD.
- Category: News
The main topic this year is Drugs and Violence.
WeFree Day is an annual high-level forum for international and Italian political bodies, media, artists, and relevant international associations to increase awareness about harms to health, society and the environment caused by drugs, trafficking and production of illegal narcotic substances.
ECAD arranges a seminar on October 12th.
Download Programme Outline (PDF)
San Patrignano Community
- Category: News
At the end of May ECAD held the second Baltic Spice Alert project conference in Tallinn. It was titled
"Why do most drug related deaths occur in the Baltic Sea Region?".
The conference was preceded by a study visit to the Estonian Forensic Science Institute and discussions on fentanyl fatalities - the main cause ot Estonian highest drug-related mortality rates in the EU (EMCDDA Drug Report 2016, trends and developments).
This time the project gathered the most qualified researchers working with the drug overdose mortality rates in Estonia, Latvia and Sweden to explain the negative statistics reflected in the recent European drug reports. Police representatives, forensic specialists, youth coordinators working at schools, Tallinn and Riga City social policy officers amounted to 35 conference delegates from all 3 project countries.
As the discussions progressed, some light was shed on the very different specifics of the highest overdose mortality rates in the region.Fentanyls and its fake analogues bother mostly Estonian partners, while Latvian and Swedish colleagues mention the new psychoactive substances often mixed with benzodiazepines as the main factor contributing to the high mortality rates.
Both synthetic cannabinoids (that caused a number of deaths in Latvia and Sweden in 2014) and synthetic opioids (troubling Swedish law enforcement and forensic specialists at the moment) have become a critical challenge to detect and identify in seizures and in biological specimines. Synthetic cannabinoids and their chemical components are also under constant modifications that place them under an ambiguous legal status in national legislations. Detecting and identifying these new substances is in fact a precondition for excelling an effective prevention and treatment policy, and all the project partners already employ the EMCDDA Early Warning system to do so.
The project partners also identified effective risk communication as the main prevention tool. Raising public awareness on the risks of the NPS, in addiction to the legislative measures to control the incoming NPS seemed extremely important. In addition to that, sharing expertise on national health experience seemed a valuable experience within this project, which is why Baltic Spice Alert is building up a network.
ECAD presented a new project, an efficient prevention tool in tackling the spread of the synthetic mixes in the Southern Sweden recently. The project "Film for Real" proved to be a success in reaching for the younger generation by involving them in research on drug effects and in actual film production. It run in 3 Swedish cities : Ystad, Simrishamn and Staffanstorp and is about to be launched in the cities of ECAD. Please contact ECAD Office if you are interested to know more.
Three project network partners will meet again this autumn in Stockholm. ECAD will report on the progress of the conference and study visit plans during the summer.
Tallinn Conference materials (still keep coming):
Overview of Estonia`s Drug Policy, Anna-Liisa Pääsukene, Ministry of Social Affiars, Estonia
Drug Overdose Mortality in Estonia, Gleb Denissov, Head of the Estonian Causes of Death Registry, Estonian National Institute for Health Development
Lethal outcomes and drug overdoses in Estonia. Statistical overview. Mailis Tönisson, forensic toxicologist, Estonian Forensic Science Institute
Latvian Police on Drug Fatalities, Jānis Berzkalns, Deputy Chief, Edgars Bukšs, Chief Inspector, Riga Municipal Police Department, Latvia
An innovative Prevention project and Spice-related deaths in Southern Sweden
Drug-induced deaths in Latvia, Diana Vanaga, researcher, Reitox National Focal Point, Latvia
- Category: News
Fabio Bernabei died on Monday, May 30, 2016. Born in Rome on 1 November 1963, his untimely death is due to the return of a bone tumor which had struck him when he was just 16 years.
Journalist and essayist, who was trained at the school of Brazilian catholic thinker Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, he was a promoter of many initiatives and battles in defense of Christian civilization, especially as a founding member of Associazione Famiglia Domani (Association of Tomorrow’s Family) and Centro Culturale Lepanto (Cultural Center Lepanto), whose president he became in 2006.
Fabio Bernabei was a founder-director of Associazione Osservatorio Droga and editor of its online magazine OsservatorioDroga.it, Italian National representative for ECAD, a correspondent of anti-drug international journal Narkotikafragan and Drug Watch International (DWI, Washington), and a consultant for the Italian government’s Department of National Drug Control Policies. For his denunciation of the "drug culture", he received prestigious "International Veronica Guerin Award" in the category of freelance journalist.
Among his books, we remember those dedicated to refuting the drug ideology: Storia moderna della droga (Modern History of Drugs), I Libri del Borghese, Roma, 2010; Cannabis medica?(Medical Cannabis?), Sugarco, Milan 2012;
Fabio updated the cover image of his profile on Facebook on July 15, 2014, with the face of Pope Francis and his following statement: «I would like to say very clearly: the problem of drug use is not solved with drugs! Drug addiction is an evil, and with evil there can be no yielding or compromise». And Fabio fought against this evil until the end, without concessions or compromises.
In 2014 Fabio Bernabei received Veronica Guerin Award from the ECAD City of Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria
We call upon our associates to keep him in their memories as a person who despite his health problems, has always fought for the good cause with utmost self-denial, generosity, sacrifice and courage. Suffice to recall that at times he was jumping from a plane to another, at least until he was physically able to do so, to attend drug-related meetings and events whenever they were taking place, from Wien to Tehran, from Istanbul to Sophia and Reykjavík in Iceland, and beyond.
RIP (Requiescat in pace) and let us remember him in our prayers.
- Category: News
A week in May, 16-20, was devoted to the EU project (Triple R) study visit to Rome and Centro Italiano di Solidarieta don Mario Picchi, or CEIS.
Triple RRR project has now its own website, click here for a detailed project description and all study visits.
The framework of the study visit reflected the need to understand the Italian rehabilitative model based on the "Progetto Uomo" ( "Project Man") ideals. A project "Man" has historically opened new opportunities for recovery in Italy, promoted acceptance for differences among the clients of the community, perceiving addiction as a humanity disease, different for each human being.
There are 1200 drug treatment communities in Italy and in 2015 there were 90 000 persons in treatment.
Italian perspective over the public and private governance in the rehabilitation of drug users has been oriented to the Christian and family values. It was developed with some assistance from the Vaticane, explained CEIS Area coordinators, Massimo Caciolo and Andrea Pilloni.
"Project Man" implies that the more responsibility one gets as the treatment evolves, the less control is exercised on the way.
We were intorduced to the Progetto Uomo rehabilitation model applied at 2 therapeutic communities, at San Carlo residential facility in Castelgandolfo and at Santa Maria therapeutic Community. Both communities apply the 3-phase model (physical intervention, phychological therapy and consciencious involvement) but have different residential programmes that can last 18-20 months.
Among therapy goals are individual autonomy (reaching autonomy, not sobriety (!)), remodelling cognitive maps (meaning that treatment centre is a place of awareness and care, where clients get their pharmacotherapy gradually decreased in a protected environment; and reshape their family relationships), and rapid resocialization.
The project partners were involved in a psychodrama, reflecting a process of rapid resocialization. It is a technique to visualize in a graphic way a relationship in a group at one specific moment. The parameters used are "attraction" and "rejection". We also had a glimpse into the double-diagnosis treatment by ECO programme.
The project partners worked on reorganizing the work load, finalizing the main concepts for the manuals and set some new deadlines for the work on the Triple R Project publications on Rehabilitation, Recovery and Reinsertion as well as for the justice intervention handbook.
ECAD looks forward to publishing and spreading the manuals on Rehabilitation, Recovery and Reinsertion - the joint work of 4 established recovery communities in the EU and a handbook on Justice Intervention - the experience and knowledge of Drug Courts in Belgium put in print this autumn.
This is the first output of the RRR project that will be presented and spread at the EU headquarters in Brussels at the beginning of 2017.
25th MAYORS´ CONFERENCE
and 6th World Forum Against Drugs
Photo: Götaplatsen @ Klas Eriksson
Annual Mayors` Conference and the 6th World Forum Against Drugs will take off on May 14-15 in Gothenburg this year.
This joint event will address a growing interest to the effective prevention practices, full recovery and alternatives to incarceration and to life-long dependency on drug treatment.
The conference will create a room for elaborating a practical guide to how a recovery city will look like, this will be grounded on the recent evidence-based research. Sheffield Hallam University (UK), Ghent University (Belgium) and the City of Gothenburg have already started working on this guide in practice.
In order to find out more and to register please visit a joint webpage here.
MAYORS` CONFERENCE 2017
ECAD 24th Mayors` Conference materials
On June 12-13, the city of Kaunas hosted ECAD 24th Annual Mayors`s Conference 2017
Safe Cities Without Drugs. Preventing, Protecting, Policing
David W. Spencer, Field intelligence Manager, Drug Enforcement Agency, European Region
Supply reduction and dismantling drug trafficking organizations: In what ways can local communities benefit (PDF)
Kim Nilvall, Swedish National Bureau of Investigation, Intelligence section, Organized crime
Police work in socially disadvantaged areas in Sweden: Impact of drugs on urban crime (PDF)
Torsten Stodiek, Deputy Head, Strategic Police Matters Unit, Community Policing Advisor, Transnational Threats Department, OSCE
Preventing terrorism and countering violent extremism and radicalisation that lead to terrorism:
A community and intelligence led policing approach (PDF)
Jon Sigfusson, Director for Icelandic Centre of Social Research and Analysis, Reykjavik University, ICSRA
Youth in Europe and Planet Youth (PDF)
Laimonas Vasiliauskas, Senior Specialist, Serious and Organized Crime Department, EUROPOL
European Illicit Drug Market (PDF)
Antonio Boscini, Health Director, San Patrignano Community, Rimini, Italy
Recovery and social reinsertion: San Patrignano Community model extended (PDF)
CONFERENCE PROGRAMME (PDF)
FIRST ANNOUNCEMENT (PDF)
Conference Booking Form
Picture: @Rokas Tenys
Warm welcome to Kaunas, Lithuania!