Know the Warning Signs: The Dangers of Drug Policy Abuse
By Nicholas Klassen
Does your legislator have a drug policy problem? That’s the question asked by a series of videos satirizing Canadian lawmakers who advocate for get-tough drug laws. Produced by the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition (CDPC), the would-be public service announcements make the case that the real drug problem in Canada stems from bad policy, not drugs themselves.
“Your politician is showing all the symptoms of ‘Drug Policy Abuse,’” reads the CDPC website. “They refuse to engage in an open and honest discussion of drug use, and instead rehash outdated, fear-based policies, dismissing research that supports new and innovative approaches.” The site goes on to gravely implore readers, “It’s time you had ‘the talk.’”
“The talk” is the one Canadians need to have with their leaders, and the CDPC website provides links to those politicians’ Twitter feeds so visitors can do just that. Ultimately the campaign hopes to show that politicians don’t need to suffer from Drug Policy Abuse.
Around the world, there are jurisdictions at the national and local levels exploring more effective alternatives to the failed, criminalization-focused drug war. And at the level of the United Nations, more and more countries are proposing that international drug treaties need to be modernized and reformed.
The conversation is happening.
The Canadian Drug Policy Coalition is a grantee of the Open Society Foundations.
Nicholas Klassen is the communications coordinator for the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition.