First, Do Less Harm
Harm Reduction as a Principle of Law and Policy
Imprint: University of Ottawa Press
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
Chapter 2: Decriminalizing Drug Possession for Personal Use: Harm Reduction as a Constitutional Imperative
Chapter 3: “PNEP”
Sandra Ka Hon Chu & Richard Elliott
Chapter 4: Ontario’s Consumption Treatment Services Model: Problematizing Conservative Safe Consumption Site Policy
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
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