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  1. Marijuana activists push legalization of medical cannabis in Costa Rica

    Robert Isenberg
    25 February 2015
    Other news

    Pien Metaal, who follows Latin American drug law reform ... told The Tico Times ... that legalizing medical marijuana in Costa Rica “would clearly send  a message that can spark a debate in the region... Of course, the debate should not just be about medicinal use,” Metaal wrote, “since in fact recreational use is the largest actually existing phenomena, [for] which simple possession and use are being criminalized and prosecuted.”

  2. The seven steps of drug policy reform in Ecuador

    Jorge Vicente Paladines Rodríguez
    09 June 2015
    Article

    Ecuador has entered a new era in drug policy and legislation. Twenty-five years after the last major legal reform, brought about by the famed Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances Law (Ley de Sustancias Estupefacientes y Psicotrópicas, Law 108), which took effect on September 17, 1990, the National Assembly is about to debate—for the second and final time—the draft Law on Prevention of Drugs and Use or Consumption of Substances Classified as Subject to Oversight (Ley de Prevención de Drogas y Uso y Consumo de Sustancias Catalogadas Sujetas a Fiscalización.)

  3. Drugs in the UK: Why we need to talk about regulation and decriminalisation

    30 January 2015
    Other news

    Fighting the war on drugs in the UK costs an estimated £13 billion annually.

  4. Technical Report on Alternatives to Incarceration for Drug-Related Offenses

    22 April 2015
    Report

    Convinced that responses to the drug problem should be comprehensive, centering on public health and human rights perspectives, the Government of Colombia, with the support of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD), is committed to encouraging the debate on alternatives which allow for a focus on the individual, moving beyond approaches solely based on repression.

  5. D.C. vs. Amsterdam: The Dutch strike back!

    25 February 2015
    Other news

    When Mayor Muriel E. Bowser delivered her legalized marijuana guidelines, she tried to ease concerns of naysayers with promises that there are enough provisions to prevent things from getting out of hand.

  6. Caribbean leaders form marijuana commission

    26 February 2015
    Other news

    Just days after Jamaica became the first Caribbean nation to decriminalize small portions of pot, leaders of the Caribbean Community agreed on the composition of a commission to examine marijuana legalization throughout their 15-member regional bloc.

  7. Washington DC legalises marijuana possession and use

    26 February 2015
    Other news

    Washington DC joins Alaska, Colorado, and Washington state as the only places in the US that allow the use of the drug for recreational purposes.

  8. Justice minister calls for light drug legalisation, PM pulls rug

    08 February 2015
    Other news

    The Portuguese justice minister, Paula Teixeira da Cruz, said she agreed with decriminalizing the use of soft drugs, in an interview to TSF radio, so “there is no highly organised crime or money laundering”. The prime minister has said that the decriminalisation of light drugs “is not on the government programme” and said that the comments made by the justice minister about this matter were made “personally”.

  9. D66 devises plan to regulate Dutch marijuana production

    26 February 2015
    Other news

    Liberal democratic party D66 is introducing draft legislation to regulate the production and sale of marijuana in the Netherlands.

  10. US president cautions against hopes of ganja legalisation

    10 April 2015
    Other news

    President Barack Obama cautioned persons who have hopes of marijuana being legalised, as he explained the difference between legalisation and decriminalisation.

  11. Ganja interests wary of internal business rivalry

    31 January 2015
    Other news

    Despite strong ministerial and legislative signals, segments of the marijuana lobby are unsure that sufficient protections will be afforded to the persons who currently supply the raw material. The challe

  12. Women Behind Bars

    • Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA)
    19 May 2015

    Across Latin America, the effects of disproportionate punishment for low-level, non-violent drug offenses are particularly severe for women. To shed light on this issue, WOLA has created a photo essay to show the human cost of current drug policies in the Americas. The photos tell the stories of four women, each providing a unique insight into the deeply troubling cycle of poverty, low-level involvement, imprisonment, and recidivism into which women are too often pushed.

  13. The science of decriminalizing drugs

    02 February 2015
    Other news

    The legal landscape for marijuana has never looked this relaxed. Alaska, Oregon, and Washington, D.C. voted during the recent election season to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

  14. Ganja decriminalisation: Three the hard way

    02 March 2015
    Other news

    February 24, 2015 was an especially emotional day for three of the stalwarts who have fought for the decriminalisation of ganja.

  15. Kratom criminalisation successfully shelved in Malaysia

    02 April 2015
    Other news

    The increasingly widespread use of ketum (or kratom) in Malaysia earlier this year prompted the Ministry of Home Affairs to lead a push to schedule it in the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952. On April 1, the amendment to the DDA was shelved. Opposition MP Wong Chen wrote a Facebook post detailing reasons for opposition to the amendment, including: usage as traditional medication, lack of socioeconomic considerations, and the need for evidence-based rehabilitation. He also emphasized that the country should be moving towards decriminalization of drugs.

  16. The United Nations General Assembly Special Session on drugs in 2016

    Kasia Malinowska-Sempruch
    16 February 2015
    Article

    In April 2016, representatives of the world’s nations will gather to evaluate drug policy in a United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS). While prohibitionist policies are still the norm, a rising tide of voices are demanding evidence based responses that respect human rights, promote public health, and reduce crime.

  17. Belize to decriminalize 10 grams of marijuana

    02 March 2015
    Other news

    Cabinet and Parliament are soon expected to put their stamp of approval on a set of recommendations presented by the committee for the decriminalization of marijuana installed back in 2012.

  18. Despite U.N. treaties, war against drugs a losing battle

    25 February 2015
    Other news

    As the call for the decriminalisation of drugs steadily picks up steam worldwide, a new study by the London-based charity Health Poverty Action concludes there has been no significant reduction in the global use of illicit drugs since the creation of three key U.N. anti-drug conventions, the first of which came into force over half a century ago. “Illicit drugs are now purer, cheaper, and more widely used than ever,” says the report, titled Casualties of War: How the War on Drugs is Harming the World’s Poorest.

  19. D.C. pot advocates threaten public smoke-in to protest ban on pot clubs

    03 March 2015
    Other news

    After just five days of pot being legal in the nation’s capital, the D.C. Council voted unanimously to approve new limits on marijuana use.

  20. Labour's 'appalling gutter politics' on drugs

    30 March 2015
    Article

    Campaigners for a more evidence-based drug policy are horrified. "It’s a classic and appalling example of gutter politics,” says Martin Jelsma, Director of the drugs policy programme of the Transnational Institute. “Accusing the Lib Dems of being ‘soft on drugs and thugs’ is a cheap populist slogan that tries to hide the Labour Party's own co-responsibility for destroying the future of thousands of people by giving them a criminal record for no good reason at all."

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