This text brings together established and emerging scholars (including graduate students) from multiple disciplines (primarily law and social sciences), frontline organizations working in the area of harm reduction, and persons with lived experience of substance use and harm reduction.
As a result, the chapters are written from a range of different disciplines, and share best practices from the harm reduction responses to different substances from Canada and elsewhere in the world. Developing a shared understanding of harm reduction, and in turn a deeper appreciation of how harm reduction can be approached in different ways serves to create a stronger foundation for effective policies and laws.
The focus of the book is on three substances: opioids, tobacco and cannabis. Harm reduction has been a high-profile element of the legal/policy response to all three, but has manifested in very different ways. For opioids, the “opioid crisis” has highlighted issues such as providing access to safe consumption sites and tools such as naloxone. For cannabis, the legalization and regulation of a formerly illegal product subject to criminal sanction offers a powerful harm reduction case study of the merits and pitfalls of Canada’s pioneering approach.
Harm reduction is also at the centre of a key debate in the area of tobacco: how to address new technologies, such as e-cigarettes, that offer smokers a less harmful alternative, but may also create new issues such as how to address health concerns arising from the uptake by young people without discouraging their harm reduction potential.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
PART I: “Illicit Drugs”
Chapter 1: Decriminalizing simple possession of all drugs: developing harm reduction strategies Line Beauchesne
Chapter 2: Decriminalizing Drug Possession for Personal Use: Harm Reduction as a Constitutional Imperative Martha Jackman
Chapter 3: “PNEP” Sandra Ka Hon Chu & Richard Elliott
PART II: Challenges and Opportunities for Harm Reduction and Cannabis
Chapter 5: Governance of Recreational Cannabis in Canada: Jurisdictional Shifts, Punitive Decriminalization and Challenges for Harm Reduction Joao Velloso, Veronique Fortin and Marie-Eve Sylvestre
Chapter 6 : Criminality and Inequity under Canada’s Legalization of Cannabis: A study of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside Stephanie Lake and Margot Young
Chapter 7: Does the dose make the poison? A review of dosing and product testing of cannabis products Ryan Pusiak
PART III: Reducing Harm in Tobacco Use
Chapter 8 : Preventing perverse effects of public health policy is also harm reduction. Potential risk in some tobacco control interventions for Indigenous peoples Marewa Glover & Kyro Selkt
Chapter 9: Regulating Harm Reduction Claims under the Canadian Tobacco and Vaping Products Act and the US Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act Sam F Halabi
Chapter 10: From First Puffs to Policy: A Non-Apology for 32 Years of Substance Use
Joao Velloso (Contributor) João Velloso teaches sentencing and “sanctioning”, legal research methods, criminology and socio-legal studies. He has a multidisciplinary background in law, criminology, sociology, anthropology and communication. He works in the areas of criminal law and sentencing, critical criminology and socio-legal studies, more particularly sociology and anthropology of law. His empirical research deals with the penalization of protesters and migrants (deportation and detention), access to justice in detention, and the regulation of cannabis. He is particularly interested in the governance of security through the use of administrative law and the deterioration of rights resulting from these penal configurations that operate alternatively and in addition to criminal justice. Dr. Velloso is a member of the uOttawa Human Rights Research and Education Centre and and he participates in different Canadian and international research networks and projects, such as: Access to Law and Access to Justice (www.adaj.canorth_eastexternal link), Institute of Comparative Studies in Conflict Management (http://www.ineac.uff.br/north_eastexternal link), Canadian Partnership for International Justice (https://cpij-pcji.ca/north_eastexternal link), Observatory Violence, Criminalization and Democracy in Latin America (http://ovcd.org/north_eastexternal link), Ottawa Hub for Reduction Network (www.lessharms.canorth_eastexternal link), Observatory on Profiling (https://profilages.info/north_eastexternal link), and Prison Transparency Project (https://carleton.ca/prisontransparencyproject/north_eastexternal link).
Sam Halabi (Contributor) Sam Halabi is the director of the Center for Transformational Health Law and a professor at Georgetown University’s School of Health. He is also an affiliate researcher at its Center for Global Health Science and Security. Prior to O’Neill, Halabi served as the senior associate vice-president for Health Policy and Ethics at Colorado State University and as a professor at the Colorado School of Public Health. He is the former Manley O. Hudson Professor of Law and director of the Center for Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship at the University of Missouri, where he earned the Husch Blackwell Award for Distinguished Teaching. He has published five books and more than 80 manuscripts in the fields of data sharing, the development and deployment of vaccines in routine and emergency circumstances, liability and indemnity factors affecting private sector participation in emergency response, the philosophy of medicine, international technology transfer, public health ethics, universal health coverage, and vector-borne disease surveillance.
Ryan Pusiak (Contributor) Ryan Pusiak is Ph. D. Candidate in the Biology Department at the University of Ottawa.
Marewa Glover (Contributor) Dr Glover is a Māori (New Zealand indigenous) behavioural scientist with over 30 years experience in public health and over 100 scientific papers. She is well known for her compassionate insight and advocacy on tobacco harm reduction, which resulted in her being appointed as Tobacco Section Editor for the international Harm Reduction Journal in 2019. In 2017, Marewa was a Finalist in the New Zealand Women of Influence Awards and in 2019, in recognition of her contribution to society she was named one of three finalists in the New Zealander of The Year Awards. Previously Marewa was a Professor of Public Health at Massey University and Chair of End Smoking NZ. Much of her work as a Professor of Public Health has concentrated on designing pragmatic solutions to reduce smoking, particularly smoking while pregnant. She has also studied how to reduce obesity, and the barriers for Māori to breastfeeding and assisted human reproduction assistance.
Amelia Howard (Contributor) Amelia Howard is a PhD candidate in sociology at the University of Waterloo studying vaping innovation and the politics of technological change.
Vanessa Gruben (Editor) Vanessa Gruben B.Sc.H (Queen’s), LL.B. (Ottawa), LL.M. (Columbia) is Vice Dean (Academic) and Associate Professor at the University of Ottawa, Faculty of Common Law and a member of the Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics. She also leads the Ottawa Hub for Harm Reduction – a multidisciplinary forum for scholars and community organizations who work on innovative harm reduction strategies. She is also co-editor of the 5th edition of Canada’s leading text on health law and policy in Canada, Canadian Health Law and Policy, co-edited with Joanna Erdman and Erin Nelson (LexisNexis, 2017). Professor Gruben teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Health Law and a seminar on Access to Health Care.