The United Nations strategy against drugs in the last 10 years has been a failure, exposes the report of the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC, for its acronym in English).

Marie Nougier of the IDPC will present the report “A decade’s balance of drug policies – Shaded report of civil society” that assesses the impact of applied drug policies throughout the world during the last 10 years, using data from the Organization of United Nations (UN) and complementing them with peer-reviewed academic studies and gray literature reports from civil society.

The report shows, for example, that deaths related to drug use have increased 145% in the last decade, with more than 71,000 overdoses in the United States only in 2017. At least 3,940 people were executed for drug-related crimes in the world in the last 10 years, while anti-drug raids in the Philippines caused some 270,000 extrajudicial executions. In 2017, Mexico had its year with the most homicides ever recorded due to the increasing levels of violence related to drugs.

The objectives and commitments assumed in the Political Declaration and the 2009 Action Plan have not been reached and, in many cases, have been translated into counterproductive policies. The shadow report also raises a series of questions about the evaluation of global drug policies, both in the past and in the future. First, the Report highlights the urgent need to conduct more detailed and periodic research on the broader range of consequences of drug policies at the local, national, regional and international levels.

Secondly, and related to the previous point, the report questions the data sources that are currently used to prepare formal evaluations, which are based, to a large extent, on the reports submitted by the governments.

To draw a more complete and balanced picture of the situation, it is essential to incorporate civil society and academic studies. This is particularly important in relation to sensitive issues related to drug policy and human rights.

And, thirdly, the lack of progress towards achieving the goals of a drug-free world, accompanied by the negative consequences associated with measures to meet those objectives, means that Member States must reflect on what to measure. It is evident that dedicating oneself exclusively to measuring the scale of the illegal market is not enough to understand the effects of drug policy on the fundamental commitments assumed by the UN Charter with respect to health, human rights, development, peace and security. The third section of the shadow report aims to offer some recommendations that we hope will provide a useful starting point for further discussion of what goals and measurement systems could be studied for the global drug strategy after 2019.

Executive summary available in Spanish here.

#Confedrogas2018 is organized by the Confedrogas Consortium and Equis Justicia for Women premises with the support of ReverdeSer Colectivo and Ria Institute, and is sponsored by the Open Society Foundations and the Swiss Embassy in Mexico.