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CN BC: Column: Yes A We Can Raise Drug Free Kids!

Top Stories (MAP) - Sat, 11/26/2016 - 08:00
The Link, 26 Nov 2016 - "Children are our most valuable gifts of nature. Let us try our best to safeguard those gifts. Cultivating a garden requires hours of vigorous digging, planting, watering and weeding. The flowering and fruit only come as a result of backbreaking work, constant self-giving and taking in all that is life sustaining from the world around us", (Joseph A. Califano). As a parents it is our solemn duty to become good role models for our children, protect them from unhealthy life style, and inspire and motivate them to achieve their dreamed goals. Substance abuse is on the rise worldwide and Canada is not immune. It is frightening to know that: 47,000 Canadian deaths are linked to substance abuse annually, 60% of illicit drug users in Canada are between the ages of 15 and 24, Canada has become the second largest consumer of prescription opioids, second only to the United States, and with a 203% increase in usage between 2000 and 2010. More than a 100 Indo-Canadian young men have lost their lives in BC gangland violence alone not to talk about other cities of Canada where there have been some stray incidents of Indo-Canadian gang related violence. In 1980,law enforcement listed just a handful of gangs who controlled the criminal markets in British Columbia.Today, it's estimated that 188 criminal groups are vying for a share of the province's illicit markets. Drugs now kill, seven a day in Canada, more than cars and guns. The total number of illicit drug deaths in BC in October was 63, up from 57 in September.
Categories: Latest News

US OR: Column: Green Friday

Top Stories (MAP) - Sat, 11/26/2016 - 08:00
Portland Mercury, 26 Nov 2016 - I ONCE WROTE a column about how cannabis growers shifted their operations indoors during the eight-year tenure of a senile president who acted in movies with a chimpanzee ["Indica Nation," Cannabuzz, Oct 8, 2014]. Ronald Reagan's fervent, jelly bean-fueled belief that people would stop enjoying cannabis simply because someone said "no" was paired with a full-scale assault on cannabis producers. People who had grown outside for years suddenly found helicopters manned by officers of the peace wielding semi-automatic weapons circling their properties. That served as incentive enough for outdoor growers to trade in their greenhouses for grow lights, HVAC systems, and high power bills. Over the years, people began to talk trash about cannabis produced outdoors (also known as "eco-friendly" and "sun-grown"). People complained that it wasn't strong enough, that it was too leafy or too harsh.
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Chronicle AM: Recovery Advocates Urge Funding Addiction Act, South Africa MMJ, More... (11/25/16)

Drug War Chronicle - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 22:19

Recovery advocates have organized a call-in to pressure Congress to fund the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, Minnesota may tighten up on opioid prescribing, South Africa advances on medical marijuana, and more.

[image:1 align:left]Marijuana

Move Underway to Get Pot Deliveries in Washington State. Officials in Seattle are working on a draft bill to legalize marijuana delivery services. A similar effort failed in the last legislative session. "As Pete and the Mayor said last January, we support legislation allowing local jurisdictions to opt in to legal, regulated marijuana delivery," said Deputy City Attorney John Schochet, referring to City Attorney Pete Holmes. "We are actively working with the Mayor's office and stakeholders to craft legislation that would allow this."

Heroin and Prescription Opioids

Recovery Advocates Urge Calling Congress on Monday to Get $1 Billion to Address the Opioid Epidemic. The recovery community is urging its members and friends to call Congress Monday to urge it to come up with money to fund the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which passed Congress this past summer. "We, the 95 member organizations of the Association of Recovery Community Organizations (ARCO) at Faces & Voices of Recovery, urge Congress to authorize $1 billion to fight the opiate addiction crisis. We are on the ground in urban and rural communities across the nation fighting this epidemic and we see first-hand the devastation addiction causes to individuals, their children and families, and communities. Our work brings hope to solving this crisis by helping people find and maintain long-term recovery and rebuild their lives." The CARA would increase access to naloxone, provide increased treatment resources for prisoners and bar the Education Department from asking about drug convictions on student loan forms. It would also "improve prescription drug monitoring programs," something drug reformers tend to be wary about due to their potential impact on the availability of pain medications to patients.

Minnesota Attorney General Recommends Opioid Prescribing Changes. Attorney General Lori Swanson Wednesday issued a report on the opioid problem calling for requiring doctors to check state prescription drug databases before issuing new prescriptions and limiting controlled substance prescriptions to 30 days instead of one year. She also called for increased access to the overdose reversal drug naloxone. "Growing addiction to prescription opioid painkillers is devastating families from all walks of life across all parts of our state,"Swanson said. "We need all hands on deck to push forward solutions, which must involve those in health care, the criminal justice system, patients, families, and policymakers."

International

Swiss Canton of Zurich Moves to Issue Own Medical Marijuana Cards. Swiss citizens can already use medical marijuana if they have authorization from federal health officials, but that process has proven complicated and over-bureaucratized, so the cantonal government in Zurich has approved Green Party-sponsored legislation that would let the canton issue cards itself. But now the canton must get approval for the scheme from the federal government, so stay tuned.

South Africa Takes Another Step Toward Okaying Medical Marijuana. The government's Medicines Control Council has told parliament that the Department of Health is moving ahead with plans to recognize marijuana as a medicine. The council said that it could be ready by February to start issuing permits to allow the cultivation and sale of medical marijuana. The proposed move would also reschedule marijuana from a banned drug to a prescription one.

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CN BC: Mobile Drug-Use Service Touted

Top Stories (MAP) - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 08:00
Kamloops This Week, 25 Nov 2016 - A mobile supervised drug-use service is being considered for Kamloops. Locations and stops would be determined based on overdose and substance-use data, as well as feedback from those who would use it.
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US: Editorial: Race And Marijuana Arrests

Top Stories (MAP) - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 08:00
New York Times, 25 Nov 2016 - Mayor Bill de Blasio, who took office in 2014, has made some progress in cutting back on the unfair and sometimes illegal police practices under which thousands of New Yorkers are arrested every year for possessing trivial amounts of marijuana. But despite research showing that whites and minority citizens use marijuana at similar rates, black and Latino New Yorkers are still far and away more likely to be singled out for low-level arrests that have little public safety value, but seriously damage their lives.
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US WA: Cannabis And Conservation

Top Stories (MAP) - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 08:00
New York Times, 25 Nov 2016 - TUMWATER, Wash. - Behind the covered windows of a nondescript two-story building near the Olympia Regional Airport, hundreds of marijuana plants were flowering recently in the purple haze of 40 LED lights. It was part of a high-stakes experiment in energy conservation - an undertaking subsidized by the local electric company. With cannabis cultivation poised to become a big business in some parts of the country, power companies and government officials hope it will grow into a green industry.
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CN MB: Column: Keeping Watch, Saving Lives

Top Stories (MAP) - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 08:00
Winnipeg Free Press, 25 Nov 2016 - Opioid crisis draws attention to supervised drug-use sites, but Manitoba's not interested - so far A DECADE ago, fentanyl, the killer synthetic opioid that can be 100 times more potent than morphine, was a relatively unknown drug. Today, it's everywhere - and it's at the heart of a national crisis claiming the lives of hundreds of Canadians.
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CN ON: Column: Weeding Out Vets' Medical Needs

Top Stories (MAP) - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 08:00
Toronto Sun, 25 Nov 2016 - Holy smokes! Veterans are getting punished for the acts of some shady medical marijuana companies. Last week, Vice News broke a story about the rising costs of medical marijuana for veterans and it shed light on the reasons for the drastic spike.
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CN ON: Column: Weeding Out Vetsa Medical Needs

Top Stories (MAP) - Fri, 11/25/2016 - 08:00
Ottawa Sun, 25 Nov 2016 - TORONTO - Holy smokes! Veterans are getting punished for the acts of some shady medical marijuana companies. Last week, Vice News broke a story about the rising costs of medical marijuana for veterans and it shed light on the reasons for the drastic spike.
Categories: Latest News

CN AB: Airdrie Mom Hopes To End Marijuana Stigma

Top Stories (MAP) - Thu, 11/24/2016 - 08:00
Airdrie City View, 24 Nov 2016 - An Airdrie mother of four and cancer survivor is striving to end the social stigma surrounding marijuana. Using a multimedia approach, Melinda Sarpal, 37, is documenting her journey to open Cannabliss - a retail store promoting holistic education and tools focusing on cannabis and health - in Airdrie.
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Chronicle AM: More Obama Commutations, FL Face-Biting Killer Wasn't on Synthetics, More... (11/23/16)

Drug War Chronicle - Wed, 11/23/2016 - 21:36

The president continues to exercise his commutation power on behalf of drug war prisoners, the Florida face-biting killer was not on any new psychoactive substances, Montana activists want their medical marijuana program to restart now, not later, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Medical Marijuana

Montana Activists File Suit to Force Early Action on Patient Cards. In the wake of last week's vote to reinstate the state's medical marijuana program, the Montana Cannabis Industry Association has filed a lawsuit seeking to force the Department of Health and Human Services to immediately begin processing and issuing medical marijuana cards. The language of the ballot measure means the state has until next summer to act, but the MCIA doesn't want to dally.

New Psychoactive Substances

Florida Face-Biting Killer Wasn't on Bath Salts, Flakka. Austin Harrouff, the Florida man charged in the face-biting slaying of a neighbor couple was not under the influence of new psychoactive substances, an autopsy report released Wednesday revealed. Early press and law enforcement commentary had suggested Harrouff was high on bath salts (methcathinone) or flakka (alpha-PVP), but the autopsy revealed only prescription medications and a "minimal" amount of THC in his system. "Austin is struggling with severe mental illness and the judicial process will bear all of this out in due time," his attorney, Nellie King said.

Sentencing

Obama Announces More Commutations, Total Now Over a Thousand. President Obama Wednesday announced that he was commuting the sentences of 79 more drug offenders sentenced under draconian drug laws dating back to the 1980s. That brings the total of commutations under Obama to more than one thousand, which is more than the list 11 presidents combined. Thousands more commutations requests filed in response to an Obama administration call in 2014 remain pending as the clock ticks down on Obama's time in office.

International

Cayman Islands Legalizes CBD Cannabis Oil. Gov. Helen Kilpatrick last week signed into law legislation allowing for the use of CBD cannabis oil in the island nation. The oil can be used for the treatment of conditions including epilepsy and cancer and as a pain reliever for arthritis symptoms. The law does not allow for marijuana to be grown in the country, but the legislature last month passed a separate law allowing for the importation of CBD cannabis oil.

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This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Drug War Chronicle - Wed, 11/23/2016 - 16:52

A Pennsylvania DARE officer didn't heed his own lessons, a Florida cop fell for a money-laundering come-on, and more. Let's get to it:

[image:1 align:left]In Center Township, Pennsylvania, a Beaver County DARE officer was arrested November 10 for allegedly stealing drugs and cash from the evidence room for more than a year. Jeffrey Stone went down after he raised suspicions by appearing to be under the influence of drugs at work, and a state police investigation found that drugs and cash had been removed from evidence bags and replaced with filler. Drugs including heroin, fentanyl, and cocaine were missing, as well as cash. Stone had been the primary custodian of the evidence room for 16 years and had received an award as the department's DARE officer. He is charged with unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and obstructing the administration of law.

In Plainfield, Indiana, a Plainfield Correctional Facility guard was arrested last Monday after he admitted smuggling drugs into the prison. Officer Joshua Kirk went down after investigators found a gram of meth on him as he arrived at work. They later found bags of tobacco and synthetic cannabinoids in his vehicle, as well as 79 more grams of fake weed and another pound of loose tobacco. Kirk is charged with trafficking with an offender, dealing in synthetic marijuana, and dealing in methamphetamine, all felonies.

In Jacksonville, Florida, a former Jacksonville Sheriff's officer was found guilty last Tuesday of participating in a money laundering scheme for an undercover officer posing as a drug dealer. Michael Rounsville, 48, accepted $42,000 in cash after he agreed to launder $200,000. Rounsville then ran the names of FBI agents through police databases for the man he thought was a drug dealer. He was convicted by a federal jury of accessing a law enforcement database without authorization for financial gain and in furtherance of a money laundering scheme. He's looking at up to five years in prison.

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Medical Marijuana Update

Drug War Chronicle - Wed, 11/23/2016 - 02:16

State lawmakers in Arkansas and Montana are grappling with the results of popular votes allowing medical marijuana, and an Arizona dispensary operator eyes a 2018 initiative.

[image:1 align:right]Arizona

On Monday, a dispensary operator announced plans for a 2018 medical marijuana expansion initiative. The owners of the Wellness Center, an Apache Junction dispensary, are moving toward an initiative to expand the state's medical marijuana program. The move comes a week after a legalization initiative was narrowly defeated. The initiative would expand the list of qualifying conditions for marijuana and it would allow people who live more than a mile from a dispensary to grow their own. The current law bars people who live within 25 miles of a dispensary from growing their own.

Arkansas

As of Tuesday,some lawmakers were eying changes and delays in implementing the new medical marijuana law. A week after voters approved a medical marijuana initiative, some legislators are acting to delay implementation, saying they need more time for rulemaking. Rep. Doug House (R-North Little Rock) said he is preparing a bill to do that. And Sen. Bart Hester (R-Bentonville) wants to add an additional tax to medical marijuana to help pay for $105 million in tax cuts he is proposing.

Montana

As of Monday, medical marijuana bills were piling up at the state legislature. Montanans voted last week to restore their state's medical marijuana system, which had been gutted by the Republican legislature in 2011, and now the legislature faces at least 10 bills designed either to make the system more workable or to try to thwart the will of the voters once again. It's going to be a busy session in Helena.

[For extensive information about the medical marijuana debate, presented in a neutral format, visit MedicalMarijuana.ProCon.org.]

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Chronicle AM: Dutch to Address Coffee Shop Supply, Campaign Against Sessions as AG, More... (11/22/16)

Drug War Chronicle - Tue, 11/22/2016 - 21:50

Nashville blows off state attorney general and will continue marijuana decriminalization, time to give your senators your two cents worth on the Sessions nomination, the Dutch ruling party belatedly comes around on coffee shop supply, and more.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]Marijuana

Nashville Will Cite and Release Marijuana Offenders Despite State Attorney General's Opinion. The city of Nashville and surrounding Davidson County will continue to allow police to ticket and release small-time marijuana offenders, even though state Attorney General Herbert Slatery has issued an opinion contending that the local ordinance is invalid because it is preempted by state law. Metro Law Director Jon Cooper: "We have reviewed the Attorney General's opinion and understand his position. However, we believe we have a good faith legal argument that the ordinance is not preempted by state law," Cooper said in a statement Monday. "At this point, we do not believe a change in the police department's enforcement practice is warranted."

Medical Marijuana

Arkansas Lawmakers Eye Changes, Delays in Implementing Medical Marijuana. A week after voters approved a medical marijuana initiative, some legislators are acting to delay implementation, saying they need more time for rulemaking. Rep. Doug House (R-North Little Rock) said he is preparing a bill to do that. And Sen. Bart Hester (R-Bentonville) wants to add an additional tax to medical marijuana to help pay for $105 million in tax cuts he is proposing.

Drug Policy

Write Your Senator to Oppose the Sessions Nomination for Attorney General. Donald Trump's pick for Attorney General, Sen. Jeff Sessions, is one of the worst drug warriors in Congress. He almost single-handedly blocked mild sentencing reform bills that members of Congress from both parties supported. He opposes marijuana legalization and has even claimed that "good people don't use marijuana." Sen. Sessions was rejected for a judgeship by a Republican-controlled Senate because of racism and false prosecutions he brought against civil rights activists. He is not a likely leader for continuing the much-needed work that has begun on police reform; in fact he's more likely to worsen the divisions in our country, not improve them. Click on the link to tell your senator what you think.

International

Dutch Ruling Party Gets on Board With Cannabis Law Reforms. After 20 years of blocking any effort to decriminalize marijuana production, Prime Minister Mark Rutte's VVD party has had a change of heart. At a party conference last weekend, the VVD voted to support "smart regulation" of marijuana and "to redesign the entire domain surrounding soft drugs." The full text of the resolution, supported by 81% of party members, reads: "While the sale of cannabis is tolerated at the front door, stock acquisition is now illegal. The VVD wants to end this strange situation and regulate the policy on soft drugs in a smarter way. It's time to redesign the entire domain surrounding soft drugs. This redevelopment can only take place on a national level. Municipalities should stop experiments with cannabis cultivation as soon as possible." The opposition political parties are already in support of solving the long-lived "back door problem."

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Against Jeff Sessions for Attorney General

Speakeasy Blog (STDW) - Tue, 11/22/2016 - 21:08

[image:1 align:right]Dear reformer:

We need your help to save marijuana legalization, sentencing reform, police reform, everything.

read more

Categories: Latest News

CN ON: Pot Shops Reopen After Police Raids

Top Stories (MAP) - Tue, 11/22/2016 - 08:00
Ottawa Sun, 22 Nov 2016 - Two of the pot shops raided by police two weeks ago are back in business. The Green Tree dispensaries on Preston Street and Montreal Road opened on the weekend. Both were sparsely stocked Monday with a few jars of dried weed selling for $10 to $14 a gram. The popular edibles - cannabis cookies, brownies, candy and pop - will be available later this week, said a clerk at one of the stores.
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Global Commission on Drugs Calls for Decriminalization of All Drugs [FEATURE]

Drug War Chronicle - Mon, 11/21/2016 - 23:53

In a report released Monday, global leaders denounced harsh responses to drug use, such as the mass killing of drug users in the Philippines under President Rodrigo Duterte, and called for worldwide drug decriminalization.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]The report, Advancing Drug Policy Reform: A New Approach to Drug Decriminalization, is a product of the Global Commission on Drug Policy, a high-level panel that includes former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan; former presidents of Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, and Switzerland; and British philanthropist Richard Branson, among others.

Since its inception in 2011, the Commission has consistently called for drug decriminalization, but this year's report goes a step further. Unlike existing decriminalization policies around the world, where drug users still face fines or administrative penalties, the report argues that no penalties at all should attach to simple drug possession.

"Only then," the report says, "can the societal destruction caused by drug prohibition be properly mitigated."

And the report breaks more new ground by calling for alternatives to punishment for other low-level players in the drug trade, including small dealers who sell to support their habits, drug mules, and people who grow drug crops. Many of those people, the report notes, engage in such activities out of "economic marginalization… a lack of other opportunities… or coercion," yet face severe sanctions ranging from the destruction of cash crops to imprisonment and even the death penalty.

[image:2 align:right]Unlike people caught with drugs for personal use, however, the Commission envisions such low-level players being subjected to civil penalties, although not criminal ones.

"After years of denouncing the dramatic effects of prohibition and the criminalization of people that do no harm but use drugs on the society as a whole, it is time to highlight the benefits of well-designed and well-implemented people centered drug polices," said former Swiss President Ruth Dreifuss, Chair of the Commission. "These innovative policies cannot exist as long as we do not discuss, honestly, the major policy error made in the past, which is the criminalization of personal consumption or possession of illicit psychoactive substances in national laws."

"At the global, regional or local levels, drug policies are evolving," added César Gaviria, former president of Columbia and Global Commission member. "However, in order to build solid and effective policies to mitigate the harms of the last 60 years of wrong policies, and to prepare for a better future where drugs are controlled more effectively, we need to implement the full and non-discretionary decriminalization of personal use and possession of drugs."

The new report from the Global Commission on Drug Policy issues the following recommendations:

1. States must abolish the death penalty for all drug-related offenses.

2. States must end all penalties -- both criminal and civil -- for drug possession for personal use, and the cultivation of drugs for personal consumption.

3. States must implement alternatives to punishment for all low-level, nonviolent actors in the drug trade.

4. UN member states must remove the penalization of drug possession as a treaty obligation under the international drug control system.

5. States must eventually explore regulatory models for all illicit drugs and acknowledge this to be the next logical step in drug policy reform following decriminalization.

[image:3 align:left caption:true]"People who use drugs have paid a huge toll to the current drug control system; they faced alone and without any legal protection the ravages of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, as well as many non-communicable diseases," said Professor Michel Kazatchkine, former Executive Director of the Global Fund on AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. "Now we have the scientific and medical tools to provide all the services they need, but we mostly lack the political leadership to implement an enabling legal environment. This starts by the complete decriminalization of drugs."

The Global Commission on Drug Policy was established in 2010 by political leaders, cultural figures, and globally influential personalities from the financial and business sectors. The Commission currently comprises 23 members, including nine former heads of states and a former Secretary General of the United Nations. The high-level group's mission is to promote evidence-based drug policy reforms at international, national and regional levels, with an emphasis on public health, social integration and security, and with strict regard for human rights.

Categories: Latest News

Global Commission on Drugs Calls for WorldWide Drug Decriminalization [FEATURE]

Top Stories (STDW) - Mon, 11/21/2016 - 23:53

In a report released Monday, global leaders denounced harsh responses to drug use, such as the mass killing of drug users in the Philippines under President Rodrigo Duterte, and called for worldwide drug decriminalization.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]The report, Advancing Drug Policy Reform: A New Approach to Drug Decriminalization, is a product of the Global Commission on Drug Policy, a high-level panel that includes former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan; former presidents of Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, and Switzerland; and British philanthropist Richard Branson, among others.

Since its inception in 2011, the Commission has consistently called for drug decriminalization, but this year's report goes a step further. Unlike existing decriminalization policies around the world, where drug users still face fines or administrative penalties, the report argues that no penalties at all should attach to simple drug possession.

"Only then," the report says, "can the societal destruction caused by drug prohibition be properly mitigated."

And the report breaks more new ground by calling for the decriminalization of other low-level players in the drug trade, including small dealers who sell to support their habits, drug mules, and people who grow drug crops. Many of those people, the report notes, engage in such activities out of "economic marginalization…a lack of other opportunities…or coercion," yet face severe sanctions ranging from the destruction of cash crops to imprisonment and even the death penalty.

Unlike people caught with drugs for personal use, however, the Commission envisions such low-level players being subjected to civil penalties, although not criminal ones.

"After years of denouncing the dramatic effects of prohibition and the criminalization of people that do no harm but use drugs on the society as a whole, it is time to highlight the benefits of well-designed and well-implemented people centered drug polices," said former Swiss President Ruth Dreifuss, Chair of the Commission. "These innovative policies cannot exist as long as we do not discuss, honestly, the major policy error made in the past, which is the criminalization of personal consumption or possession of illicit psychoactive substances in national laws."

"At the global, regional or local levels, drug policies are evolving," added César Gaviria, former president of Columbia and Global Commission member. "However, in order to build solid and effective policies to mitigate the harms of the last 60 years of wrong policies, and to prepare for a better future where drugs are controlled more effectively, we need to implement the full and non-discretionary decriminalization of personal use and possession of drugs."

The new report from the Global Commission on Drug Policy issues the following recommendations

1. States must abolish the death penalty for all drug-related offenses.

2. States must end all penalties—both criminal and civil—for drug possession for personal use, and the cultivation of drugs for personal consumption.

3. States must implement alternatives to punishment for all low-level, non-violent actors in the drug trade.

4. UN member states must remove the penalization of drug possession as a treaty obligation under the international drug control system.

5. States must eventually explore regulatory models for all illicit drugs and acknowledge this to be the next logical step in drug policy reform following decriminalization.

[image:2 align:right caption:true]"People who use drugs have paid a huge toll to the current drug control system; they faced alone and without any legal protection the ravages of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, as well as many non-communicable diseases," said Professor Michel Kazatchkine, former Executive Director of the Global Fund on AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. "Now we have the scientific and medical tools to provide all the services they need, but we mostly lack the political leadership to implement an enabling legal environment. This starts by the complete decriminalization of drugs."

The Global Commission on Drug Policy was established in 2010 by political leaders, cultural figures, and globally influential personalities from the financial and business sectors. The Commission currently comprises 23 members, including nine former heads of states and a former Secretary General of the United Nations. The high-level group's mission is to promote evidence-based drug policy reforms at international, national and regional levels, with an emphasis on public health, social integration and security, and with strict regard for human rights.

Categories: Latest News

Chronicle AM: AG Nominee Stokes MJ Fears, Global Commission Calls for Drug Decrim, More... (11/21/16)

Drug War Chronicle - Mon, 11/21/2016 - 22:37

Donald Trump has nominated a harsh drug warrior to head the Justice Department, Montanans will see a slew of bills aiming at making their medical marijuana system more workable (and at least one that wants to kill it), the Global Commission on Drugs called for drug decriminalization, and more.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]Marijuana

Trump's Pick of Jeff Sessions as AG Raises Fears in Marijuana Industry. President-elect Donald Trump (R) has nominated anti-marijuana Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions to head the Justice Department, setting off alarms in the marijuana industry. As attorney general, Sessions would oversee federal prosecutors and the DEA and could move to undo the Obama administration's policy of largely allowing the states to set their own course on pot policy.

Colorado Bureaucrats Nix On-Site Pot Consumption for Bars. Just a week after voters in Denver approved a social use initiative allowing restaurants and bars to seek permits to allow on-site consumption of marijuana, the Department of Public Health and Environment has announced that it will not allow liquor license-holders to obtain such permits. The department said using alcohol and marijuana together increases impairment. But proponents of the measure said alcohol establishments already rely on the judgment of servers and that the move would allow consumers to use marijuana products without having to go outside or hide behind closed doors.

Medical Marijuana

Arizona Dispensary Operator Eyes 2018 Expansion Initiative. The owners of the Wellness Center, an Apache Junction dispensary, are moving toward an initiative to expand the state's medical marijuana program. The move comes a week after a legalization initiative was narrowly defeated. The initiative would expand the list of qualifying conditions for marijuana and it would allow people who live more than a mile from a dispensary to grow their own. The current law bars people who live within 25 miles of a dispensary from growing their own.

After Initiative Victory, Medical Marijuana Bills Pile Up in Montana. Montanans voted last week to restore their state's medical marijuana system, which had been gutted by the Republican legislature in 2011, and now the legislature faces at least 10 bills designed either to make the system more workable or to try to thwart the will of the voters once again. It's going to be a busy session in Helena.

Heroin and Prescription Opioids

Kentucky Legislator Files Bill to Limit First-Time Opioid Prescribing. State Rep. Jeff Taylor (D-Hopkinsville) has prefiled a bill, BR 202, that would limit first-time adult prescriptions for non-chronic pain relief to a seven-day supply. The bill does include an exception that would allow a doctor to prescribe a longer supply if deemed medically necessary.

Kratom

Still Ten Days Left to Comment on Proposed Kratom Ban. Anyone who wants to commit on the DEA's plan to schedule kratom has until December 1 to do so. Click on the link for more information.

International

New Report Calls on UK to Legalize Marijuana. A new report from the Adam Smith Institute says that Great Britain's drug strategy "has failed in its core aims to prevent people from using drugs, manufacturing drugs, and to put a stop to the crime, corruption and death that is taking place on an industrial scale around the world," and calls on the government to legalize marijuana. The report is winning support from a cross-party parliamentary group that includes former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg.

Global Commission on Drugs Calls for Global Drug Decriminalization. In its annual report, the Global Commission on Drugs has called for an end to criminal and civil penalties for drug possession and more research into alternative regulatory models. The report comes months after the commission sharply criticized the United Nations' refusal to embrace more radical drug reforms at its UNGASS on Drugs last spring. Commission member Richard Branson called the UN's status quo approach "fatally flawed" at the time.

Categories: Latest News

CN ON: Legal Changes In The Works On Opioid Crisis

Top Stories (MAP) - Mon, 11/21/2016 - 08:00
The Record, 21 Nov 2016 - OTTAWA - The federal government is eyeing a number of legislative changes to address Canada's opioid crisis, Health Minister Jane Philpott said Saturday at the conclusion of a summit examining the issue. The federal government is actively trying to turn the tide of the crisis, Philpott added, noting it will require a whole-of-government approach.
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