Legal highs warning to Birmingham’s Christmas revellers

Birmingham News

Birmingham News

Revellers in Birmingham have been warned not to ruin the festive season by taking so-called ‘legal highs’ this Christmas.

The warning comes after national figures showed the number of deaths associated with the use of ‘legal highs’ increased from 12 in 2009 to 97 in 2012.

It has also been revealed that the number of people in treatment in England for taking legal highs has jumped by 216 per cent over the last five years, rising from 738 in 2009/10 to 2,339 last year.

Birmingham Public Health substance misuse expert Ricky Bhandal has warned users they are stepping into the unknown and today insisted: “You might want to have a good time with friends and colleagues but legal highs should not be part of your Christmas party plans.

“We know that just because something is legal that doesn’t mean it’s safe. If you’ve got a substance and you don’t know what it is, there’s a risk right there. People who are taking legal highs are really playing Russian Roulette with their lives, perhaps even more so if they take them with alcohol.”

For information and advice about drug and alcohol treatment services in Birmingham, call free phone 0300 5555 999.