By Shivani Joshi

It is evident that it is the way in which we regard drugs which is highly problematic. We emphasise legal and illegal, ignoring the fact that we are all drug users in some form, and that some legal drugs are more harmful than many illegal ones.

Even for those who do experience addiction, we should turn our attention to helping them with their problems rather than imprisoning and criminalising them – focusing not on the drug, but on the pain that their drug use may be attempting to diminish. For those with problematic drug use, we advocate a harm reduction approach—rather than punishing behaviour or trying to enforce abstinence.

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