Change Grow Live – health and social care charity

Our statement in response to the University of Sheffield’s drug harm reduction guidance

Our statement in response to the University of Sheffield’s drug harm reduction guidance

2 October 2018

At the end of last week, The Telegraph published an article that saw some students criticise the University of Sheffield for promoting harm reduction advice among students. We completely understand the concerns of these students and, like the university, we do not condone the use of illicit substances. However, it is very clear that despite their dangers, some people will still go on to use these substances. In fact, a recent NUS study suggested that 56% of students have tried drugs at some point in their lives.

Many people experimenting with drugs are unaware of their effects and the potential health risks. Over the past year, we have shown our support to The Loop, who are doing fantastic work to encourage people at nightclubs and festivals to have their drugs tested and become more informed about their contents and strength. We believe that providing harm reduction advice, like that shared by the University of Sheffield, gives people the opportunity to make informed decisions that can help reduce the risk of harm and potentially save lives. We would encourage other universities to follow a similar, sensible approach and call on the expertise of organisations such as The Loop.