UNGASS Shadow Document: The language that the Outcome Document overlooked

“[Recalling that] more than eighty percent of the world´s population carries a huge burden of avoidable pain and suffering with little or no access to such medications. “ …harmonization of drug control and Human Rights and development principles. The group membership should represent a balanced selection of experts from Member States and regional organizations, relevant…

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The authors of the Johns Hopkins-Lancet Commission on Public Health and International Drug Policy call for non-violent minor drug offenses including use, possession, and petty sale, to be decriminalized.

“It’s time for us to rethink our approach to global drug policies, and put scientific evidence and public health at the heart of drug policy discussions.” “The goal of prohibiting all use, possession, production, and trafficking of illicit drugs is the basis of many of our national drug laws, but these policies are based on…

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Legalize it all: How to win the war on drugs

“We’re confronted now with the fact that the U.S. cannot enforce domestically what it promotes elsewhere,” a member of the U.N.’s International Narcotics Control Board, which monitors international compliance with the conference’s directives, told me. ​When the [United Nations] General Assembly convenes [in April 2016], it also will have to contend with the startling fact…

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Politics

Kratom, health supplement targeted by FDA…

“Regulation before prohibition is the answer,” says Susan Ash, a founder of the American Kratom Association in Virginia, who says she uses the herb three times a day to treat pain and lethargy from chronic Lyme disease. ​ Ash says the product should be restricted to adults, the supplement’s packaging should carry warning labels and…

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Surgeon general announces review of federal drug policies

“I’m proud to announce that next year, I will be releasing the first-ever Surgeon General’s Report on substance use, addiction and health. We’re going to look at the best science on everything, from heroin and marijuana, to alcohol and prescription opioids.” ​ Under the Obama administration, federal drug agencies have made a point to talk…

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The truth behind the UNODC’s leaked decriminalisation paper

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has responded to the ‘leak’ of its briefing paper calling for the decriminalisation of drug possession for personal use. Before considering this response, it’s important to be clear this wasn’t really a ‘leak’ in the classic sense. The document was to be presented by the UNODC at…

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Bill would stop kicking kids out of college for marijuana

Since 1998, U.S. college students relying on federal financial aid to help pay their tuition have put their access to education at risk every time they brought a joint to their lips. That year’s version of the Higher Education Act made it so that anybody with a conviction for possessing or selling an illegal drug…

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Taking Control: Pathways to Drug Policies that Work

The obstacles to drug policy reform are both daunting and diverse. Powerful and established drug control bureaucracies, both national and international, staunchly defend status quo policies. They seldom question whether their involvement and tactics in enforcing drug policy are doing more harm than good. Meanwhile, there is often a tendency to sensationalize each new “drug…

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