The Failed Drug War

Peter McVerry SJ The Failed Drug War

"The War on drugs has long been lost", says Peter McVerry in submission to Government Committee investigating the decriminalisation of being in possession of drugs.

In the submission Peter McVerry argues that the current policy of criminalising drug use is not working. He points out that the criminal justice system have prosecuted thousands, issuing fines and sending people to prison, yet the number of drug users continues to increase.

McVerry says that if we want to reach out to people dependent on drugs then "declaring a war on them is not the best way to do it." Taking a social policy or public health response would see money saved from the criminal justice system (Gardaí, courts, prison service) towards investing in treatment. Our current reality, according to McVerry in his submission, is an inadequate network of treatment facilities nationally.

In the submission Peter McVerry is advocating a U-turn on our current approach to drug misuse because our current policy has failed. Current evidence, he argues, shows the need to decriminalise drug use aimed at reducing harm to the individual, their family and community and society at large.

Read the full submission here: Submission on Drug Possession 2015


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