Propose Solutions

Breaking open the drug policy deadlock

Uruguay, which in 2013 became the first nation to approve a national legal framework for regulating the cultivation, trade and consumption of cannabis, is part of a growing coalition of countries advocating for rational drug policies rooted in principles of harm reduction and human rights.

The big question for those in favour of drug policy reform is how to break the deadlock at the international level that legally constrains national laws within the frame of outdated and ideological UN conventions signed in 1961.

TNI knew that the meeting of the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on Drugs, to be held in April 2016, was unlikely to deliver needed change as a few countries could easily block reform. So TNI has worked to build recognised international expertise  on how to maximise reforms within the existing conventions, as well as exploring options for moving forward with the countries leading the way on evidence-based just drug policies.

TNI put forward a proposal to establish an expert advisory group to review the UN drug policy control architecture. This proposal was picked up and formally put on the table by a number of countries including Ecuador, Uruguay, Jamaica, Colombia and Costa Rica.

TNI has been a key advisor to a coalition of countries, particularly in South America, Caribbean and Europe, that are calling for an end to the drug war that has destroyed so many lives. Their numbers continue to grow.