Publication Topics Archives: Drug policy

Recommendations to Canada: Submission to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

Racialized communities are disproportionately charged, prosecuted and incarcerated in Canada under laws that criminalize people who use drugs, depriving them of their rights to equal treatment in the justice system, to security of the person, and to health and social services. Canada’s failure to provide prisoners, who are disproportionately Indigenous and Black, with equivalent access […]

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Mandatory Minimum Incarceration for Drug Offences: Bad public policy: Submission to the Department of Justice

“There is no evidence that mandatory prison time for people convicted of drug offences reduces the problems associated with drug use, or drug use itself. “At the same time, there is a growing body of evidence that mandatory minimum sentences wreak terrible damage on individuals (particularly those who are dependent on drugs), families and communities, […]

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New report from Canada’s Drug Futures Forum outlines recommendations for the next decade of drug policy in Canada

Toronto, Canada (July 14, 2017) — Against the backdrop of a national opioid overdose crisis and the fracturing of the global consensus on criminalization-based drug policies, over 200 participants met in Ottawa at Canada’s Drug Futures Forum in April 2017 to produce a ten-year agenda for the future of Canadian drug policy. A new report […]

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Review of Canada’s Compliance with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

“The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network submits this briefing to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in advance of its review of the periodic report of Canada, held during its 93rd session from July 31 to August 25, 2017. “[T]he Legal Network has focused this briefing on its concerns about Canada’s implementation of […]

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Letter to provinces and territories Re: Healthy drug policy: Bill C-37 and beyond

“We, the undersigned, write to you respecting the recent passage into law of Bill C-37, An Act to amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and to make related amendments to other Acts. As you well know, the intent of this law is to facilitate the scaling up of safer consumption services (SCS) across Canada, […]

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List of Issues Prior to Reporting: Canada’s Compliance with the Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

“In advance of the adoption of the List of Issues Prior to Reporting for Canada’s periodic review under the UN Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (‘Convention’), to be held during its 93rd session from 31 July to 25 August 2017, the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network (‘Legal Network’) would like to provide […]

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Canada Needs Action Now: Top Priorities in Harm Reduction and Drug Policy Reform

TORONTO, May 15, 2017 — Today scientists, medical professionals, policy makers, activists and people who use drugs are gathering in Montréal for the 25th Harm Reduction International Conference 2017 (HR17). Meanwhile the opioid crisis rages on and, even as Canada takes an important step forward by legalizing and regulating cannabis, outdated prohibitionist drug policies continues to […]

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Harm Reduction in Canada: What Governments Need to Do Now

Canada is in urgent need of comprehensive harm reduction policy that jettisons the failed, costly model of drug prohibition that has ravaged so many lives, from fueling the spread of HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV), to contributing to over-incarceration, to creating conditions for the ongoing epidemic of overdose fatalities. A harm reduction approach must […]

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Letter to Health Minister Re: Senate Committee Amendments to Bill C-37

“For the reasons we have noted, we urge you to oppose and remove the Senate committee’s three amendments to Bill C-37, as they are contrary to the spirit and purpose of the bill, creating unnecessary mechanisms for delay in determinations regarding exemptions for SCS [safer consumption services] and reflecting an ongoing stigmatization surrounding people who […]

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Harm Reduction Services for Indigenous People Who Use Drugs: Questions and Answers

In Canada, Indigenous people experience higher rates of injection drug use and less access to health care than non-Indigenous people. For many Indigenous people, drug use offers a means of coping with traumatic life circumstances, including those related to their experiences with the residential school and child welfare systems in Canada, legacies of colonialism and […]

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