A Ministry of Justice (MOJ) official told lawmakers yesterday that ketamine would probably be upgraded to a class-two drug soon and users would have to undergo treatment at drug rehabilitation centers.
Prosecution Department Director Chu Kun-mao (朱坤茂) made the remarks at a meeting of the legislature’s Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Liao Cheng-ching (廖正井) said ketamine abuse has become a serious problem on campuses, with the number of ketamine users having jumped 10-fold from six years ago.
Liao asked why the ministry has been hesitant to upgrade ketamine from a class-three drug to a class-two drug.
KMT Legislator Hsieh Kuo-Liang (謝國樑) said the ministry’s position on ketamine made it “a supporter” of the drug.
Chu said the ministry would likely pass a bill in an inter-ministerial meeting it is hosting at the end of this month to list ketamine as a class-two drug.
By law, people who use first or second-class drugs have to undergo treatment, Chu said, and so the ministry has to get ready to house more drug users. It is also considering allowing students who use ketamine to receive treatment during their summer or winter break.
The law states that individuals arrested for using first-class drugs such as heroin and cocaine, or class-two drugs such as amphetamines and marijuana are required to undergo treatment at drug rehabilitation centers for a maximum of one month.
Those who fail a medical examination after a month of treatment are required to undergo a second period of treatment, which can last up to a maximum of one year.
Individuals who have undergone narcotic treatment but are rearrested for drug use will be charged with a criminal offense.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb