Cansford Labs - The Drug and Alcohol Testing Blog

Cansford says: Launch of world’s first fingerprint-based drug use confirmation test

Posted by John Wicks on Jun 8, 2018

If you want to find out drug levels in someone’s system, you have a few different options. You can analyse a sample of their urine, blood, sweat, breath or, of course, hair. Each will give you a picture of when the person used drugs, and the amount.

Not all tests give you the same information. Some tests, such as blood or saliva tests, give a small window of insight into a user’s drug use – hours and days. Others, like hair testing can analyse drug use over a longer period – weeks and months.

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What does a new President of the Family Division mean for family law?

Posted by John Wicks on May 31, 2018

April 2018 saw the announcement that current Appeal Court Judge and family law specialist Sir Andrew McFarlane would succeed Sir James Munby as President of the Family Division of the High Court.

Munby’s incumbency at the Family Division has framed a period of considerable change for the Court. This has included the introduction of the Children and Families Act in 2014 and the double-whammy of budget trimming and increasing caseload. This perfect storm is a combination of what Sir James described as ‘the Baby P effect’ and the fallout from the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, which significantly curtailed access to Legal Aid.

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[Cansford says] Norway's drug policies

Posted by John Wicks on May 23, 2018

Norway has made a bold change to its drug policy. The Scandinavian country, voted the happiest in the world in 2017, has recently decided to make its drug policies a public health - rather than a criminal - matter.

Following a letter to Norway's health minister Bent Høie, policymakers and stakeholders from several countries outlined ways in which to make the policy reform successful, designing a template for other countries to follow.

Many leading experts support Norway’s decision, which has followed in the footsteps of Portugal – the first country to decriminalise drug use back in 2001. Countries such as Ireland and France are also now moving towards decriminalisation. The UK however, is not.

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10 ways family lawyers are driving more value from their hair tests

Posted by Lolita Tsanaclis on May 10, 2018

Hair strand testing is a reliable and quick way to test for drug and alcohol use over long periods. Hair tests have helped lawyers gain the advantage in difficult cases, whether to prove innocence or protect a vulnerable victim.

But the success of hair strand testing, like all scientific endeavours, depends on process. It’s not as simple as taking the sample for testing and sending it off for analysis. Legal experts can derive more value through following easy, but critical steps.

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How will Brexit affect drug and alcohol testing in the UK?

Posted by Lolita Tsanaclis on May 4, 2018

While Brexit negotiations continue to drag along, one thing is clear: the UK’s exit from the EU will leave almost no part of British society unaffected.

This is especially true of the legal system. The UK now must untangle itself from five decades of EU directives, regulations and treaty provisions, creating a new paradigm for lawyers in this country.

For family lawyers, in particular, the inter-relationship between EU and domestic family law is likely to be altered by Brexit. What that means in practice is open to speculation.

But Brexit’s effects will extend beyond the letter of the laws and regulations. Over the last decade, drug and alcohol testing has become a central component of family law proceedings in the UK - and testing, like so many other parts of the legal system, will also be affected.

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