Feeds

Top drug boffin renews criticism of cannabis policy

High on science

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

The Home Office's chief drug advisor has today stoked the row over the reclassification of cannabis and ecstasy, accusing the government of "devaluing" scientific evidence.

Professor David Nutt heads the committee of boffins that advises the Home Office on drug classification.

Last year then-Home Secretary Jacqui Smith ignored his committee's scientific recommendation and bumped cannabis back up to class B. He was also unimpressed by her decision earlier this year to keep ecstasy at class A, despite his assessment it is no more dangerous than riding a horse.

Alcohol and tobacco are more dangerous than cannabis and ecstasy, he said today, renewing his criticism of the Home Office.

"As we have reviewed the evidence on cannabis very extensively in the last 10 years there's not been anything we've seen to say it is more dangerous than class C drugs," he said on the Today Programme.

"It's about the whole way society assesses the relative harm of drugs... the majority of the public do not want people to be given a five year prison sentence for posession of cannabis, which is what would happen if it's class B."

The Home Office said it is "determined to crack down on all illegal substances and minimise their harm to health and society as a whole".

In a new paper, Nutt argues the distinction drawn between the harm caused by illegal and legal drugs is moral and political, not scientific. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.