Last week MPs voted not to exclude alkyl nitrites, more commonly known as ‘poppers’, from upcoming upcoming drugs legislation.
The Psychoactive Substances Bill, which will take affect on April 1, will outlaw substances including the laughing gas Nitros Oxide and ‘poppers’.
In what was described as a “compromise” by Home Office Minister Mike Penning, an independent review into the medical evidence surrounding ‘poppers’ was proposed. This evidence would be collected and presented to the Health Department and the Home Office, who would then decide whether to overturn the ban.
Mike Freer, who has been a long standing advocate for the exclusion of poppers from the ban, has been invited to meet with Karen Bradley MP, the Minister appointed by the Government to oversee said independent review.
According to Mr Freer’s office, if the review confirms the assessment made by MPs – and among others, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs – that poppers are not harmful, then the ban on poppers which will come into force this April is likely to be reversed as early as July 2016.
The proposal to ban ‘poppers’ while in-depth research into their effects could be conducted, was refereed to as “an act of total madness,” by Liberal Democrat MP Norman Lamb
Mike Freer will be meeting with Karen Bradley in the next few weeks, so that he and others can understand the details of the review.