APCC responds on plans to ban the sale and use of nitrous oxide from November

From: Association of Police and Crime Commissioners
Published: Thu Oct 19 2023

APCC Addictions & Substance Misuse Leads, Durham PCC Joy Allen and Dorset PCC David Sidwick, have welcomed the Government's announcement that possession of nitrous oxide is to be illegal from November.

“We are delighted this legislation is being implemented with some urgency. The prevalence of nitrous oxide on our streets is an issue for every county in the country. PCCs have voiced growing concern at the drug's well-documented links to anti-social behaviour and the potential health risks.

“The APCC have campaigned vigorously for this ban and for those caught supplying this potentially dangerous drug to children and young people for misuse to be treated as drug dealers. We are pleased the government has listened.

“Reducing drug-related harm across our communities is a top priority for all PCCs. Seen by many as a gateway to other drugs, nitrous oxide already appears to be a factor in some serious road traffic collisions.

“The ban will ensure police officers are better equipped to deal with the problem in their communities and respond more effectively to residents' concerns. We have always maintained that an outright ban is necessary to reflect public concerns and help to control recreational use of this drug and we are pleased the government agrees. Stiff penalties for those supplying it to children and young people are welcome.

Equally, enforcement on its own will have limited impact, we must also educate young people against risk-taking with drugs and provide the right interventions and support. There is also a need for improved research and monitoring of its use and availability with police working closely with health partners to deliver a joint response.”

Company: Association of Police and Crime Commissioners

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