VIDEO: Drug charity's praise for Sheffield City Council over Spice pictures pleaÂ

A drugs charity has praised Sheffield City Council after it urged people not to take photos of Spice "zombies", saying addicts need "help, not judgment".

Tuesday, 2nd October 2018, 9:35 pm
Updated Tuesday, 2nd October 2018, 9:42 pm

Sheffield City Council asked people not to take photographs of people under the influence of Spice.

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A psychoactive substance formerly classified as a legal high, Spice is designed to mimic the effects of cannabis. Users are sometimes referred to as "zombies", and photos of people under the influence are often shared widely on social media.

The council tweeted: "Spice can be distressing for both the user and members of the public.

"Please be compassionate by not taking photos."

Substance abuse charity Addaction commended Sheffield's "humane" request and said that people who take spice are "unwell".

A spokesman said: "Compassion for people whose lives have taken a wrong turn is really important.

"Sheffield City Council are taking a humane and sensible approach; we commend them for it.

"Taking photos of people when they're unwell is unhelpful.

"Nobody decides to become dependent on Spice, things happen over time which can lead people down that road.

"People need help not judgment."

The drug can have severe side effects. Users of spice have been known to experience increased heart rate, vomiting, hallucinations and panic attacks, and have been known to be aggressive.

Spice was classed as a legal high until May 2016. It was then reclassified under the Psychoactive Substance Act.