Drug decriminalization and international law: Brief submitted to the Health Canada Expert Task Force on Substance Use

The HIV Legal Network submitted this brief to the Health Canada Expert Task Force on Substance Use as part of their look into alternatives to criminal penalties for simple possession of controlled substances.

As we wrote, “Canada has both important latitude under the drug control conventions, and important obligations under human rights treaties it has ratified. It can and should use that latitude in the realm of drug control to better respect, protect and fulfil the human rights it has pledged to uphold, and which are also embodied to various degrees in its own constitution. It can and should do so by removing all criminal and other punitive sanctions for the simple possession, purchase and cultivation of drugs for personal consumption, and by removing significant criminal penalties for at least small-scale trafficking and related activities.”

August 2021: Read the final report and recommendations from the Task Force here.


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