Long-term compulsory rehabilitation cannot be justified on the grounds of effectiveness or ethics. The practice has also been associated with a number of human rights violations. It is absolutely essential that any treatment system is developed and used in full respect with human rights principles, medical ethics and global evidence, within the framework of a public health approach. Evidence also shows that, when a crime is committed to support drug dependence, it is feasible to offer the offender a choice between treatment and a sanction, but this should happen under strict judicial oversight, and only if a number of criteria (highlighted above) are met. It is also possible for the State to mandate short-term compulsory care in exceptional situations where drug use creates an immediate and real threat to the person or society.

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