The use of punishments such as incarceration for those involved in the illicit drug trade has long been relied upon a deterrent. However, it has resulted in the imposition of disproportionate sentencing (including the use of the death penalty) and overcrowded prisons, with high risks to health, social cohesion and human rights. Some countries and jurisdictions are now moving towards decriminalisation, alternatives to prison and the regulation of some markets.
The 65th Session of the CND was characterised by tensions resulting from Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the increasingly vocal support for a human rights-approach by most UN representatives, and the resilient engagement and sharp interventions by civil society.
The UNODC Secretariat of the Governing Bodies (SGB) is inviting all interested NGOs to attend a briefing about the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) and the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ).
#DrugDecrim Month showcases the wealth of existing evidence and knowledge on the harmful impacts of criminalisation, and the benefits of decriminalisation to foster safer, healthier and more inclusive communities.