Manchester: Heroin Haters

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Published on 9th May 2017 by

The second episode in BBC Three’s 2016 series Drugs Map of Britain, the crew meet a group of men in Manchester who use violence to deal with what they perceive to be a growing problem with heroin in their area. The vigilante group physically attack heroin addicts in the belief that will doing so will drive them out of their area, they object to the addicts who leave used needles in public areas and commit crimes to fund their addictions. It transpires that the vigilantes are actually users and dealers of cocaine themselves.

The film maker focuses on the stigmatism of drug addicts, arguing that the actions of the vigilantes isn’t productive and that heroin addiction should be treated as a health condition. It could be argued that the primary problem facing Manchester right now is not heroin but the legal synthetic cannabinoid ‘spice’, the city has a spice epidemic which has been well publicised in the British media and was explored by Vice in their documentary Spice Boys.

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