Pubdate: Sat, 23 Jul 2016
Source: Canberra Times (Australia)
Copyright: 2016 Canberra Times
Author: Bob Douglas


In his article, "Why more drug consumption rooms are a must" 
(Comment, July 20, p14), Ross Fitzgerald highlights beautifully what 
is wrong with our current policy approach to illicit drugs.

We are spending massive funds on a falsely labelled "war on drugs" 
which is really a war on drug users. We have handed the lucrative 
production and distribution of these psychoactive drugs over to the 
criminal class.

As Fitzgerald points out, some resources that are being wasted on 
this misdirected war would be better used in minimising harms and 
rehabilitating those who have become addicted.

It is incomprehensible that the lessons learned from the Sydney 
medically supervised injecting room and the drug consumption rooms in 
Europe have not been acted upon more widely in Australia.

In the words of our PM we cannot "arrest our way to success". We need 
to turn the "black market" into a "white market". We should do this 
by treating psychoactive drug use as primarily a health and social 
issue and beginning to develop government legalisation and regulation 
of the drugs themselves.

Bob Douglas, Aranda
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