Concerned that some young people are failing to recognise the lows of legal highs, Ryan Higgs is warning of their dangers.
His story was broadcast on ITV News Central on Thursday 7th August.
The 20-year-old from Worcester wants to show that even when a substance is legal, it isn’t necessarily safe.
‘I think a lot of young people think that just because it’s called a “legal high” that it’s perfectly fine to take – when actually, it’s not,’ Ryan explains.
‘There are drugs that can replicate the effects of cannabis that can be even worse for you and for your body.
‘The first time I came across them was at a party. Someone started hallucinating and acting really weird, which was quite scary.’
With Fixers, Ryan and his team helped create a film to highlight the potentially devastating impacts of legal highs - which are also known as synthetic drugs.
In the broadcast piece, the video is shown to pupils at The Chantry School in Worcester, who describe it as ‘graphic’ and ‘realistic’.
You can watch the film ‘Blazing: Synthetic Highs’ by clicking on the image below.
Deborah Knowles from the young person’s substance use service, SPACE, also appears in the TV broadcast story in support of Ryan’s campaign.
‘There has been an increase in young people using synthetic drugs in Worcestershire,’ she says.
‘Because this film has been developed by young people for young people, I think it sends out a powerful message.
‘A lot of synthetic highs are now illegal, but some young people may not be aware of this.’
Ryan adds: ‘It makes you a bigger person to say no rather than to be peer pressured into something you don’t want to do.
‘If I’ve changed someone’s mind about taking these legal drugs, I’ll be happy.
‘I’ll know that I’ve actually helped someone in some way.’
For more information and advice relating to legal highs, visit the Talk to Frank website.
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The risks of legal highs are also the focus of Patricia and her team’s campaign. See why they think those trying the substances are playing a dangerous game.