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U.N., Governments, Health Professionals Must Mobilize To Reform International Drug Policy

The Lancet: Reforming international drug policy
Editorial Board

“…For the first time in two decades, the U.N. General Assembly’s Special Session (UNGASS; April 19-21, 2016) will be about the world drug problem. It will be a crucial moment for revisiting and reforming international drug policy. … [The Johns Hopkins-Lancet Commission on Drug Policy and Health] concludes that drug policies intended to protect people, but based on prohibition and criminalization, have had detrimental effects on public health in multiple ways and have undermined people’s right to health. … The Commission urges UNGASS 2016 to bring public health evidence to bear on the forthcoming debates, and help the world move away from a war on drugs that is essentially a war on people who use drugs. … In addition to the main U.N. stakeholders and governments, health professionals too must mobilize and join the debates on drug policy. They should help build a strong evidence base to understand the health issues arising from future drug-control policies, to identify and emulate best practices for public health and safety, and to protect the health and wellbeing of future generations” (4/2).