Public health and international drug policy
Standard public health and scientific approaches that should be part of policy making on drugs have been rejected in the pursuit of prohibition.31 Mar 2016
The idea of reducing the harm of many kinds of human behaviour is central to public policy in traffic safety, tobacco and alcohol regulation, food safety, safety in sports and recreation, and many other areas of human life where the behaviour in question is not prohibited. But explicitly seeking to reduce drug-related harms through policy and programmes and to balance prohibition with harm reduction is regularly resisted in drug control. The persistence of unsafe injection-linked transmission of HIV and HCV that could be stopped with proven, cost-effective measures remains one of the great failures of the global responses to these diseases.
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