High Alert: Why we want to help everyone party safely this summer
Today marks the start of High Alert, a new campaign from Metro.co.uk and The Loop.
We’ve teamed up to reach as many people as we can, all with the aim of reducing harmful drug use and helping everyone party safely this summer.
For anyone who doesn’t know us, The Loop is a non-profit harm reduction organisation providing free, non-judgmental advice and information to tackle harmful drug use.
That means we’re not here to lecture you on not using drugs (although obviously, that is the safest option), but we do want to make sure that if you are going to party, you’re doing it as safely as possible.
As part of this mission, we conduct public drug checking, where people can submit substances of concern for lab testing by chemists, then receive test results alongside consultations with health professionals, almost all of whom are volunteers giving their professional expertise for free.
Here at The Loop we will be doing everything we can to help keep people safe as clubs and festivals reopen this summer.
The combined effects of coming out of lockdown and the changes to drug markets have created a perfect storm for drug-related harm, with a number of additional risks.
People catching up with missed partying may be tempted to party too hard and they are likely to have reduced tolerance, which increases the risks.
Meanwhile, Covid-19 has disrupted drug markets and supply chains, so we know that very high strength pills are in circulation across Europe, alongside reports of more adulterated drugs.
However, there has been no drug checking in the UK because of coronavirus, so we know even less about what is being bought and sold than in previous summers.
These additional risks combine with the adverse impact on mental health from nearly 18 months in and out of lockdown, limited social events and increased anxiety around crowds.
That’s why it’s so important that now, as restrictions lift and we ease our way out lockdown, we ensure everyone has the knowledge they need to enjoy the summer safely.
This article is a part of High Alert, a campaign from Metro.co.uk and drug checking organisation The Loop. To find out more about their 2021 harm reduction campaign and how to reduce the risks of drug use, click here.
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