The UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on drugs is fast approaching 2016 and is an important opportunity to conduct a thorough and objective assessment of the international drug control system. This session will discuss remaining challenges, as well as opportunities for the way forward – in particular towards rebalancing current drug policies towards the core UN values of public health, human rights and development
Tom Blickman is a Senior Project Officer at the Transnational Institute (TNI), based in Amsterdam. Since 1997, he has been working for TNI's Drugs & Democracy Programme, specializing in international drug control policy and the UN conventions, drug markets, alternative development, money laundering and organised crime. Tom is a regular speaker at international policy conferences and advises...
Ernestien Jensema (1971) is a social anthropologist who has been working as a researcher and project coordinator with the Drugs & Democracy Programme of TNI since 2008. She focuses on issues related to the UN drug control system and the Drugs and Democracy Programme’s Asia project....
Drug law reform continues developing in the right direction in several Latin American and Caribbean countries. In Jamaica, for example, a law legalizing the cultivation and consumption of ganja for medicinal, religious and research purposes came into force, as well as the decriminalisation of possession for personal use. Jamaica also spoke out at the UN Thematic Debate in New York. On May 7th, the minister addressed the UN High Level Thematic Debate on international drug policy, highlighting Jamaica’s perspectives on drug control policies and participating in a debate that encourages open and inclusive discussions. Amongst the outcomes Jamaica would like to see from UNGASS is “the establishment of an Expert Advisory Group to review the UN drug policy control architecture, its system-wide coherence, its treaty inconsistencies and its legal tension with cannabis regulations.”
In 2007, the Transnational Institute (TNI) and the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) started a Latin American Informal Drug Policy Dialogue. The initiative was to modelled on the dialogue process in Europe that started in 2004. Purpose of the dialogue is to have an open-minded exchange of views on current dilemmas in international drug policy making and discuss strategies on how contradictions might be resolved.
The first meeting of the Informal Dialogue on Drugs Policy in Latin America took place in Montevideo, Uruguay. Sessions centred around: Consumption of base paste and crack in the South of Latin America; Overview of the UNGASS review and evaluation process for the period 2008/2009; The prison problem in the region associated with drug related crimes.
Decades of efforts to reduce global drug supply using a combination of developmental and repressive means, managed to shift production from one country to another, but have failed in terms of global impact.
Steering Committee of the Global Forum of Producers of Prohibited Plants (GFPPP)
09 March 2015
The undersigned, constituting "The Steering Committee", acting on behalf of small farmers (families) of controlled plants, from all geographical regions in the world, along with civil society organizations, academics and experts on drug policies and rural sustainable development, adhere and proclaim the organization of a Global Forum of Producers of Prohibited Plants (GFPPP)
The first meeting of the Informal Dialogue on Drugs Policy in Latin America took place in Montevideo, Uruguay. The meeting had the support of the National Drugs Council in Uruguay (Junta Nacional de Drogas or JND). Twenty-five people took part from eight countries in Latin America, Europe and the US. Three sessions centred around: (1) Consumption of base paste and crack in the South of Latin America; scientific and political responses. (2) Overview of the UNGASS review and evaluation process for the period 2008/2009, and discussion of the contributions from the point of view and practices of Latin American countries. (3) The prison problem in the region associated with drug related crimes: realities, problems and proposals.
TNI’s Martin Jelsma participated in the inaugural meeting in Rio de Janeiro of the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracyon April 30, 2008. Prominent members of the Commission are three Latin American former presidents: Fernando Henrique Cardoso from Brazil, César Gaviria from Colombia and Ernesto Zedillo from Mexico.
"It is time to develop a proper Latin American response that is detached from the ideology from the United States that has been common in the past decade," Martin Jelsma told the meeting. "It is potentially a good time to try because politically there is now more distance to US policies in a growing part of Latin America and to US domination in general."