Anyone has any thoughts on this?


The government's consultation on a new 10-year drugs strategy is a 'sham', according to one of Britain's leading think-tanks on narcotics, which warns that the current policy is fuelling a crime epidemic.

The Transform Drug Policy Foundation, the only UK organisation of its kind to advise the United Nations on such issues, will this week publish a new report claiming the current strategy has failed. The report, 'After the War on Drugs: Tools for the Debate', claims there is an urgent need for full consultation on allowing the controlled supply of illegal drugs. 'It is clear our drug policy cannot continue down the same failed path forever,' the report states. 'Prohibition's failure is now widely understood and acknowledged among key stakeholders in the debate... the political benefits of pursuing prohibition are now waning and the political costs of its continuation are becoming unsustainable.'
The report claims that drug prohibition has allowed organised crime to control the market and criminalised millions of users, putting a huge strain on the justice system. The Home Office estimates that half of all property crime is linked to fundraising to buy illegal drugs. The police claim that drug markets are the main driver of the UK's burgeoning gun culture. Official figures released last week showed that drug offences recorded by police had risen 14 per cent in April to June of this year, compared with the same period in 2006.

Politicians claim tough anti-drugs laws send clear signals to society. But Transform points to a Home Office survey, commissioned in 2000, which showed the social and economic costs of heroin and cocaine use were between £10.1 and £17.4 billion - the bulk of which were costs to the victims of drug-related crime.
'Over the course of 10 years, a series of different inquiry reports into UK drugs policy all say the same thing: the policy is malfunctioning,' said Steve Rolles, the report's author. 'They've all been blithely ignored by the government, which insists it is making progess.'
Last week, North Wales Police chief constable Richard Brunstrom said he would 'campaign hard' for drugs such as heroin to be legalised. Previously he has said that drugs laws are out of date and that the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 should be replaced by a new 'Substance Misuse Act'.
Transform claims the consultation process, which finished on Friday, was designed to stifle debate on drugs policy. 'The consultation process has been a sham,' Rolles said. 'It hasn't highlighted any policies to consult on. It's becoming very clear the next 10-year strategy is going to be identical to the last one. The whole idea that there is going to be a radical change is just not the case.'
The think-tank has taken the unusual step of writing to the Better Regulation Executive, set up to ensure government runs smoothly, to complain that the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, is already making policy before the consultation process had finished.
The Prime Minister signalled earlier this year that the government would reclassify cannabis. He also recently insisted the government would never decriminalise drugs, something Transform argues makes a mockery of the consultation process.
A spokeswoman for the Home Office said: 'We have undertaken an open consultation and we welcome constructive ideas and views on how we can continue to reduce drug harm. However, the government is emphatically opposed to the legalisation of drugs which would increase drug-related harm and break both international and domestic law.'

Buy the poppies direct from the Afghan (and other) farmers (use some for medicine and burn the rest), cuts out hte terrs and the crime side. The Farmers could get a fair price too.

Any drug dealer found guilty of trafficing is killed and all assets are seized, family are not offered any help from the government.

Users are weened off using the actual drug, not synthetic replacements, in prisons.

Clean needles and ancillaries and a ever decreasing supply could be made available on the NHS, for good behaviour only. A brush with teh police would mean the supply is cut.

"Celebrities" who use the stuff face stiff penalties, to prevent people thinking it is kool.
Make users pay for their drugs. I say this because off-the-shelf morphine and diamorphine (heroin) are amongst the cheapest drugs that the NHS uses, and an addict would spend more on fags than opiates in a week to sustain their habit, if they could buy them at "wholesale" prices.

The main medical problems with drugs (opiates anyway) is the crap that the dealers use to pad them out. Medical-grade opiates have no side-effects, appart from depressing the respitatory system.. In itself this is quite serious(although easly reversed), but unlike smoking, there is no long-term risk of organ damage or cancer. Problems come from illegal drugs because they contain God-knows-what.

IMHO, controlled prescription and supervised taking of opiates would pay for itself several times over. Squeamishness in not letting the users inject themselves (as opposed to drinking it) is misplaced, if they want to, let them - it's their veins.

Looking at the big picture, the cost to society of letting market forces (drug dealers) govern the supply of drugs is a serious mistake. Recognising that the demand is not going to go away, regulation and control is probabally more effective than probabition - look what happened in the USA when they tried that with alcohol.
Here's my tuppence worth:-

Wouldn't work. Farmers have to sell to to the drug barons or they'll get killed.

Would put the dealers out of business but otherwise wouldn't work. There would be a massive increase in the number of addicts who would need to fund their habbit by stealing. Each one would steal less but there would be vastly more of them so, overall, crime would rise. Add in the cost of providing free housing, healthcare etc and you have a nightmare.

Hardly ever works. Only about 6% of junkies are 'cured'. Look at Pete Doherty & Co. They can afford state of the art rehab but they still end up back on drugs.

The only real solution I can see is to lock junkies up and let them go cold turkey. This would cost a fortune in prison space but it would also save a fortune in policing, crime etc. Overall, I think the taxpayer would be quids in.

Make it an offence just to have heroin in your blood without a good reason. We'd have to start handing down substantial prison sentences for offences like begging and shoplifting. Can't see the current government doing this as they've effectively decriminalised shoplifting and dealing cannabis.

The only solution I can see in the long term is to eradicate the poppies. Can you see Gordon blowing the dust off cases of agent orange and buying the RAF a squadron of crop sprayers? I can't. Perhaps introduction of pests or diseases that kill poppies is the only way to go. The US government proposed this for the Columbian coca farms in the 1980s. Anybody for biological warfare?
You could buy from the farmers, if they are protected. We have British and American Troops in AFG, buy the product and protect.

You never know, when other countries see the drop in illegal imports they might even do something too.

Pete and co, would soon get the picture after being locked in a 6ft by 6ft cell and surrounded by their own excrement until clean (of drugs that is). Rather than some expensive namby pamby rehab centre.
most stupid junkie in my 4 years of working with them never went damm i can't get drugs today :? even when the police were celebrating a huge drug bust on the telly.
coke is now in quite common use as is dope on civvy street.
the war on drugs is lost :(

its been effective as prohibition was in the states

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