Would you take something marked ‘not for human consumption’? The resounding answer is no, yet some people are putting their lives at risk taking legal highs (otherwise known as new psychoactive substances).
Emergency services and Cheshire West and Chester Council have been growing increasingly concerned with the number of people collapsing in the busy streets of Chester City Centre, on occasions appearing lifeless, after taking legal highs. Victims of this addiction often suffer these adverse effects in full view of passers-by, including young children.
Today, Monday 5 October 2015, Cheshire Police – supported by the local council and Trading Standards – have issued three shops in the City Centre with Community Prevention Notices, to help combat the issues associated with legal highs.
Inspector Paul Loughlin, who led the team issuing the notices said, “The notices we’ve issued today prohibit the selling and distribution of legal highs by these shops and are just one of the tools we have available to us to tackle the issue of legal highs and associated anti-social behaviour.”
“Chester is a family friendly city and the police are well aware of the adverse effects legal highs have on people who take them and others who come into contact with users. Taking this action today, I want to reassure our communities that we’re here for them, when and where they need us, and importantly to stress that we are taking such action not just to prevent users of legal highs from coming to serious harm but also to protect others from anti-social behaviour, often directly linked to such use.”
“It’s vitally important that our communities work with us to tackle problems in the city. If anyone has any information regarding issues, such as legal highs or the misuse of controlled drugs, please contact the police on 101 or leave information anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”
Councillor Louise Gittins, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Wellbeing, said: “Legal highs can carry serious health risks as, in most cases, they have not been tested to show that they are safe.
“Indeed, it is becoming increasingly clear that legal highs are often far from harmless and can have similar health risks to drugs like cocaine, ecstasy and speed.
“The action taken today demonstrates our commitment to protect our communities from the very real danger posed by these substances."