With all eyes, understandably, focused on Brexit at the moment it is important for me to also take time to update you all on other important issues I am working on.
The use of 'synthetic cannabis' drugs, Mamba and Spice, have had knock on effects on Mansfield town centre, along with many other towns across the UK. As many of you will know, I have been working to raise the classification level of the drugs from class B to class A. Therefore, I was happy to see that the Financial Times has picked up on the importance of this issue.
With a classification change, harsher monitoring of the consumption of the drugs can be put in place to try and prevent individuals from using Mamba. Of course, I understand that those who are addicted to these drugs need help and many are in difficult or compromised living situations. Reclassification is a step in the right direction, rather than a solution. I commend the hard work and dedication on this issue from local services. Alongside a local charity called Framework, Mansfield District Council and the police have launched a joint operation to tackle antisocial behaviour relating to the use of Mamba.
Part of the problem with the drugs reputation is that they are often referred to as similar to cannabis when their affects are far more extreme. As I explained in a speech in the House of Commons, users can fall into a semi-comatose state and the drug spice itself has been compared to heroin in how addictive it can be.
I am pleased that Ministers have agreed to reconsider the classification of synthetic cannabis and I look forward to hearing the recommendations made by the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs later this year.