The New Zealand Drug Foundation has been in the forefront of drug policy debates in New Zealand for more than 25 years. We interviewed its director, Ross Bell, about the chances of reforming drug laws in his country.
Drug Policy and Law
Drug laws in most countries of the world follow the principle defined by the three international drug conventions (1961, 1971, 1988), that is, they prohibit the non-medical and non-scientific use of some mind altering drugs. This principle is not only outdated but it has become anachronistic: the reality is that millions of people use mind altering substances for recreational purposes and most of them do not experience significant harms from drug use. What is more, many harms people do experience are directly connected to the war on drugs, which created a lucrative black market that only benefits criminal organisations. A drug-free world is an illusion, drug policies should be aimed at reducing the harms of drug use and drug policies instead. We believe that drug use should not be punished and drugs should be regulated as legal products, adjusted to the specific characteristics and risks of those drugs.
The legal regulation of drugs is more effective and just than prohibition. But does it really fix most problems? Not without social justice. (This article is available in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian)
The Catalonian parliament has recently adopted a new law to regulate the cannabis market. We interviewed Òscar Parés, the deputy director of the International Center for Ethnobotanical Education, Research & Service to learn more about the cannabis reconquista movement in Spain.
Whilst experiences with psychedelic drugs share common elements, psychedelics are, chemically speaking, a broad class of drugs. In this Dose of Science, we take a look at a study that has measured the pharmacological properties of 35 psychedelic substances, shining some light on the similarities and differences between their biochemical profiles.
Last week the anti-NGO law came into effect in Hungary. From now on, NGOs receiving more than 26,000 USD per year from international donors have to register as “foreign-funded NGOs”, report donations, and attach a warning to every publication (read my earlier article here!). Although the government claims the law only aims to improve transparency, […]
“The question is no longer whether cannabis will be legalized, but when.” Watch this 3 minutes animated video clip produced by a member of our global video network, CILD, explaining why cannabis should be legalized in Italy!
The Sejm has passed a law that is intended to allow patients to access cannabis preparations. These preparations will be available in pharmacies on a doctor’s prescription, and the raw substance shall be imported from abroad. 440 deputies voted yes, two were against, and one person abstained.
We are glad to publish our documentary movie featuring one day in the life of people who use drugs from seven cities around the world!
Watch online the films screened at the Drugreporter Film Sessions at HRI Conference, Montreal 2017.
In case you haven’t heard, there is an opioid epidemic in the United States. The phenomenon is not driven by the use of illegal substances, rather it is caused in part by the overprescription of opioid based painkillers, such as Oxycontin. Exploratory studies have suggested that patients with access to medical cannabis reduce their intake […]