These are three chief lessons the Netherlands learned after decades of evolving drug policy: It seems that more tolerant laws coupled with honest education is proving to be the way to go. You can successfully separate drug markets. It seems prohibition, which lumps substances together and necessitates one buy from the black market, may be the gateway culprit rather than cannabis.
Both opponents and advocates of drug policy reform are sometimes guilty of misrepresenting this evidence, with the former ignoring or incorrectly disputing the benefits of reform, and the latter tending to overstate them.
Most notably, HIV infections and drug-related deaths have decreased, while the dramatic rise in use feared by some has failed to materialise. Background Portugal decriminalised the personal possession of all drugs in This means that, while it is no longer a criminal offence to possess drugs for personal use, it is still an administrative violation, punishable by penalties such as fines or community service.
There was a growing consensus among law enforcement and health officials that the criminalisation and marginalisation of people who use drugs was contributing to this problem, and that under a new, more humane, legal framework it could be better managed. Portugal complemented its policy of decriminalisation by allocating greater resources across the drugs field, expanding and improving prevention, treatment, harm reduction and social reintegration programmes.
The introduction of these measures coincided with an expansion of the Portuguese welfare state, which included a guaranteed minimum income. While decriminalisation played an important role, it is likely that the positive outcomes described below would not have been achieved without these wider health and social reforms.
Conflicting accounts of how rates of use changed after are usually due to different data sets, age groups, or indicators of changing drug use patterns being used.
But a more complete picture of the situation post-decriminalisation reveals: Levels of drug use are below the European average5 Drug use has declined among those aged ,6 the population most at risk of initiating drug use7 Lifetime drug use among the general population has increased slightly,8 in line with trends in comparable nearby countries.
This tallies with a significant body of evidence from around the world that shows the enforcement of criminal drug laws has, at best, a marginal impact in deterring people from using drugs.
Instead, drug use tends to rise and fall in line with broader cultural, social or economic trends. Health It has been claimed that the prevalence of drug-related infectious diseases rose after decriminalisation,20 yet this is strongly contradicted by the evidence. Although the number of newly diagnosed HIV cases among people who inject drugs in Portugal is well above the European average,21 it has declined dramatically over the past decade, falling from 1, to 56 between and And according to this measure, deaths due to drug use have decreased significantly — from approximately 80 into 16 in In fact, there are no data collected for drug-related homicides.
With its recategorisation of low-level drug possession as an administrative rather than criminal offence, decriminalisation inevitably produced a reduction in the number of people arrested and sent to criminal court for drug offences — from over 14, in the yearto around 5, per year once the policy had come into effect.
While opportunistic thefts and robberies had gone up when measured init has been suggested that this may have been because police were able to use the time saved by no longer arresting drug users to tackle and record other low-level crimes.
Socioeconomic deprivation is associated with greater levels of drug-related harm and drug dependence,38 39 40 and public spending cuts taken in response to economic crises can exacerbate this situation. Significant reductions in health and welfare budgets in Portugal have led to fears that the country may experience a dramatic increase in HIV infections, as Greece did when it closed drug treatment and harm reduction programmes as part of its attempts to reduce public spending.
The challenge now for Portugal is ensuring these gains are not lost.Although the goal of creating laws against drug use to stop people from using potentially harmful substances is a worthy goal, that mandate would be better fulfilled by counselors, treatment facilities, and other forms of infrastructure.
Decriminalization isn’t the same as legalization. This tallies with a significant body of evidence from around the world that shows the enforcement of criminal drug laws has, at best, a marginal impact in deterring people from using drugs.
17 18 19 There is essentially no relationship between the punitiveness of a country’s drug laws and its rates of drug use. Instead, drug use tends to rise and fall in line with broader cultural, social or economic trends.
Decriminalization versus legalization: marijuana advocates scrutinize competing plans for reform The differences between decriminalization and legalization are relevant to more British. Oct 21, · Drugs: Decriminalization vs Legalization?
What's the difference? So basically the difference between decriminalization and legalization is gigantic when it comes to harm reduction - since the lions share of the harm is a result of a black market distribution.
We don't want a million people sitting in jail for drug offenses and all the. Consistent with other studies of the liberalization of cannabis laws, medical cannabis laws do not appear to increase use of the drug.
" (International Journal of Drug Policy, ) Marijuana Decriminalization And Its Impact On Use. Drug Decriminalization. Cannabis Legalization. Laws in the United States of America Morals and Morality.
Law. In terms of regulation, what is the difference between legalization, decriminalization and criminalization?
Update Cancel. Answer Wiki. 2 Answers. Quora User. So, really, the difference between decriminalization and legalization.