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While newspapers fall over themselves to be scandalized by 100 grand going towards policing 4/20 once a year, they are silent about the much bigger expense of fighting the pointless war against cannabis. The fact is that Vancouver's cannabis activists have saved the city many millions of dollars over the years.
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The rise of Mexican cartels can have ramifications in Canada that exceed drug-related problems commonly associated with them. Cartel activities can have a direct impact on immigration, human trafficking, money laundering and cybercrime in Canada.
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They launch crusades of violence against the easiest of targets: the racialized Other, the immigrant, the slum dweller, the refugee. They promise a return to a Utopian past at the expense of their chosen scapegoats - each one of a certain colour, geographic origin or religion - only to guarantee an impoverished future for us all.
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As we urge the move to legalization and regulation, we also need to recognize that Canada has significant issues with drug consumption, both in terms of those that are legal, at present, and those that will become regulated as we shift away from criminalization.
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The War on Drugs has been a failure, and soon enough using drugs will shift from a criminal to a public health issue. But what if we paid people not to engage in harmful consumption? If we rewarded them for stopping damaging use? Couldn't the savings in all manner of costs greatly outweigh the comparatively small expense of any incentive?
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Treatment as Prevention (TasP), pioneered by the BC-CfE and implemented in British Columbia with support of the provincial government, has shown that bringing HIV services to those in need where they are at saves lives, prevents new infections and contributes to health care sustainability.
The War may suffer a slow and prolonged demise, but the end will surely come. Canada can be a leader on these issues. It can steadfastly promote the winding down of the War. Our country should reclaim its position on the international stage, not as a nation of power, but one of humanity.
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Over the five years I spent seeking treatment, my family and I encountered a seemingly endless series of obstacles -- from programs that couldn't accommodate me, to waiting lists that lasted much longer than my desire to get clean -- all of which combined to feel like the treatment system was designed for me to fail.
It's become clear that the way countries evaluate their drug policies dictates the kinds of outcomes that governments are seeking to highlight. Simply put, reform begins with taking a hard look at what governments themselves are prioritizing in their drug policy evaluations.
Before premiers, liquor unions and corporations start falling all over each other in an effort to cash in on legal cannabis sales, let's remember the real reasons we should be ending cannabis prohibition in Canada.
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Earlier this month, Francisco Flores and Efrain Campos Flores, nephews of Venezuela's first family, were arrested for trying to transport 800 kilos of cocaine through Haiti. Is it possible to move beyond ideological affiliations to target the greater problem of drugs smuggling?
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I was a true believer in the war on drugs, but at the end of the day, as a physician, I have believe in an evidenced-based approach. The evidence shows that incarceration doesn't work, and decriminalization with offers of treatment do. It's time to ignore dogma and act in the best interests of Canadians. It's time to end this war.
Why not show the seedy, disgusting underbelly and sickening adverse effects drugs have on us feeble humans? Images of a deviated septum, busted arm veins, chronic bleeding noses, rotten teeth, fetal effects, undernourished human bodies, etc. Horrifying images of what drug use has on the human body. Visceral images that make one think "that's repulsive, I'll never do that." We usher in a movement that illustrates and encourages dialogue about the revolting face of what drugs do: destroy the human spirit, decay our bodies, ruin families, and ultimately lead us to an early grave. There is NO glamour in drug use, no matter what Kanye is singing about.
Last week, MPs debated Bill C-2 -- an Act to Amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. The primary purpose of the bill is to obstruct the establishment of safe injection sites in Canada, despite over a decade of successful harm reduction at Vancouver's Insite. This is just one example of how politicians of all stripes get drug policy wrong.
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The war on drugs must end and the battle to change international drug policies must begin, says a new report from the London School of Economics. Five Nobel Prize-winning economists signed off on the...
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People sure love their drugs. There are high costs, however, for this international appetite for drugs. And it's usually the poor and disenfranchised who pay these costs. The cost of the global appetite for drugs is high and the burden is disproportionately felt by the poor. It's the man who passes out in front of my apartment on a weekly basis. It's the victims of beheadings in Mexico. It's the families left impoverished while a small, violent elite makes millions. Drugs aren't cool. Or edgy. This is supply and demand at its most brutal and the poor are the ones paying the price.
"The reality is that young people today have easier access to marijuana than to alcohol and tobacco. That should be the core of the conversation right now."
Liberal leader Justin Trudeau is right that legalizing, and then regulating, marijuana is the right thing to do. It will save money and it will help keep weed away from kids. Prohibition isn't working to keep kids safe from today's supercharged weed. Legalization and regulation will.
Cocaine, heroin and weed have never been cheaper — or more potent. Congratulations, global drug policy. A new report from the medical journal BMJ Open finds the street price of illegal drugs has falle...
VANCOUVER - The decades-long "war on drugs" has failed to curb the $350-billion a year global trade in illicit drugs, says a new study by researchers in British Columbia and California.Using statistic...
It beats me why so many American conservatives have smartened up about when it makes sense to send people to jail when Canadian conservatives -- at least the ones who count -- clearly haven't. The average cost of keeping a Canadian in prison for a year is more than $113,000, which is money well spent for violent offenders. But why spend it locking up minor drug offenders? Why are we hell-bent on this backwards way of thinking?
In a candid interview with CBC's George Stroumoumbouloupoulus, Prime Minister Stephen Harper says he has close-up and personal knowledge of the illegal drug industry having once spotted a baggie and j...
Our ability to manage pain through pharmaceuticals has progressed by leaps and bounds. The advent of powerful new drugs has helped thousands manage sometimes debilitating pain and regain productive function. But along with this increased capacity to treat pain has come undesired side effects including addiction, dependency, and a growing death toll. Let us be clear: addiction is not a disease of society's margins, of the criminally inclined or of the morally destitute. Addiction to prescription drugs is a public health issue that affects all kinds of people and requires multiple sectors and stakeholders to work together in addressing a chronic, relapsing condition, not bad behaviour.
Montreal is one of the hot spots in the country when it comes to drug smuggling, and it accounted for two-thirds of the more than $5.5 billion worth of drugs seized by the Canada Border Services Agenc...
The Harper government's new focus on the Americas means a dramatic change of effort for the Canadian Forces and an overt participation in the U.S. war on drugs. The commander of Canada's operational...
VANCOUVER - Two prominent Canadian doctors have joined an international campaign calling on world leaders to stop the spread of AIDS by ending the so called war on drugs.Their advertising campaign is...
The war on drugs is a failure that is fuelling the global HIV/AIDS epidemic, according to a new report from an international panel of experts. The report from the Global Commission on Drug Policy — w...
We now see every week the crumbling of foreign policy of the United States. The War on Terror was not without mistakes, but the War on Drugs has been a disaster in every respect. Only 20 years ago, the U.S. bestrode the world, the only super power, strong by any measurement. Today it is quavering, waffling, semi-bankrupt, lurching from one mistaken and often hypocritical policy to the next.
The Conservative government has spent millions of dollars on sophisticated technology to enforce its "zero tolerance" policy on drugs in federal prisons, but new tools have detected only a small fract...
Lies and miscalculations rule the day in Canadian politics and we don't seem too bothered. Who needs data, facts, or expertise to make hundreds of billions worth of decisions? Since lies seem to work, politicians scatter them liberally. Candidates spew promises they have no intention or clue how to keep. We are repeatedly shocked to see them broken.
The upcoming Summit of the Americas is likely to address issues like trade and territorial security, but many anticipate that the most pressing topic will be the lingering problem of drug trafficking....
OTTAWA - Defence Minister Peter MacKay and his U.S. and Mexican counterparts wrap up a two-day meeting in Ottawa today that has focused on shared North American security threats.Drug trafficking, cybe...