Side Event: Innovations within the three UN drug policy conventions. Launch of the Drug Policy Futures. Alternatives? Yes! Legalization? No

S E Sørheim
Drug policy futures is a new platform for a debate about health-based drug law. Drug Policy futures if a forum where groups can share successes and ideas. It grew out of discussions here in Vienna. Despite differences, they agree that it’s false choice that ending war on drugs means legalisation. There is ample room with innovation and experiment. Things can be done within the conventions.

Calls for a balance between demand and supply reduction.


10 point declaration

1) drug use is a risk factor for a range of negative outcomes
2) a public health oriented drug policy should prevent drug related harm
3) drug use is particularly harmful to young people (main target of prevention)
4) Drug use does not only affect the user (families and friends)
5) There is a need for a comprehensive approach to drug related harm.
6) vast majority of the world population does not use drugs
7) We believe that recovery is the best way for people who have developed drug related problems to minimize their risk of further consequences
8)  law enforcement plays an integral role in drug use prevention
9) Tackling world drug problem requires strong international collaboration
10)To promote public health we need to adhere to the three main drug control treaties, convention of the rights of the child. They are the best framework for reducing non medical drug use.

Principles
Should be focussed on prevention
human rights
balance reduce and supply
protect children
ensure medical access
ensure access to controlled drugs for legit uses.

50 organisations have signed up. Full spectrum of groups from law enforcement to health care.

General Arthur Dean CADCA
Work must start with prevention. Reducing the demand for drugs is most cost effective way of reducing problem. Save $7 for every $1 invested in prevention. Build safe healthy and drug free communities.

Gives spiel about CADCA. Empower communities to solve their own problems. They provide training. Has done a lot of work in the USA and internationally.

R. Kasirye
Works in Africa. Hit by HIV/AIDS. Many challenges. Rural population. Lack of education. Many international organisations have been helpful. Young people in Africa aren’t in school. Young people ned information. There are few facilities in Africa. In Africa we need to prepare young people, help them make informed decisions. Scale up interventions. Need to be conscious that programmes that work in Europe or America will need tinkering to work in Africa. Need to do a lot more groundwork, build infrastructure and facilities.

Carmen Ferndanez Centros de intergracion Juvenil
A national network for 45 years. Do a lot of research about risks of drug consumption and how prevention programmes work. Have evidence that treatment is effective.
Have provided treatment services to thousands of people and prevention programmes to hundreds of thousands. Work in schools and with young people and work with parents. Give them resources about how to talk to their children and build networks. There are also bullying prevention programmes. Have treatment centres and semi-residential centres. Research is important.

George Williams TASC
Has several divisions within their structure. One of them is a not for profit called centre for health and justice. Will talk from this position. They look at policies and the system and see how it can be made better. Take the “criminal justice pipeline”, they’re looking for ways to shut the front door, there are many chances to intervene. Looking at diversion systems looking how they can intervene. Did a report called No Entry.

E Rubini San Patrignano
Medical treatment is first step into recovery. Provide alternatives to jail. Social reintegration programme. Working on a prevention model. Promotes debate in schools. Reaching more than 20000 young people. Prevention should not be forgotten and providing real paths for social integration. Take a holistic approach. Civil society voice is important in these debates.

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