Thursday, January 17, 2013

Health News

Plotting a Better Path

SFU and CDPC working to create new drug policy in Canada

Submitted by Douglas Haddow, CDPC/website image


t the April 2012 Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, the Heads of Government of the Member States of the Organization of American States commissioned the OAS to analyze the Hemisphere's drug policies and to present and explore alternatives to address the issue of illegal drugs and drug use.


On Saturday, January 20th, the OAS will formally commence this process in Panama City, Panama.


The CDPC and Simon Fraser University are proud to announce that CDPC Executive Director and SFU Adjunct Professor, Donald MacPherson, will be in attendance as part of the OAS's scenario-building team and representative of Canada.

"There is a real shift taking place in the global drug policy regime and the OAS review process is a good indicator of this. Governments from across the hemisphere are beginning to look for smarter alternatives to the war on drugs that are more effective at addressing both public health harms and public safety issues at the same time," said MacPherson.

"Who knows what will happen when we start imagining different futures in the area of drug policy. The important thing is to get people talking about alternatives - alternatives that have a hope of achieving success. The OAS process will begin to do that - it will bring people with diverse views together to look forward and see what kind of drug policies make more sense than prohibition. And in the end we all have the same end goal - improved public health and safety when it comes to drugs and drug use."

The group will meet twice over the next two months and work together for four days each time. The meetings are being facilitated by Reos Partners and the Centro de Liderazgo y Gestion and will result in a two-part report that will be used to inform the OAS's position on drug policy.

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