Every day I see articles in the newspapers and segments on the news about addiction and you so often hear the phrase “War on Drugs”, but does the situation seem to be getting better or worse? Around the world there is a significant problem within all societies with addiction, because addiction knows no class, race, religion or gender. There are also many differing views on how to deal with addiction each with its pro and cons.
Some advocate for total abstinence through inpatient or outpatient treatment, religion and home-based care, individual and group counselling.
Harm minimisation strategies such as methadone clinics, provision of clean needles and drug information are other views that suggest that if the person is not yet ready to change, then by minimising the harm associated with using will in turn minimise the long terms costs both to the individual and to the broader community.
Some believe that the legalisation of illicit drugs is the answer so to cut out the crime associated with gaining the financial means to use drugs. Stating that by legalising and providing drugs such as heroin and dagga at a standard cost will cut out the involvement of organised crime and give the government more control over the drug situation.
This article from an Australian newspaper The Age on Monday 21st May discusses the ‘War on Drugs’ and the current trend to penalise drug users and drug associated crime with incarceration, with the suggestion that by doing so, society is actually increasing the problem whereas mandatory sentencing to treatment centres could reduce reoffending. The article suggests that government funds should be redirected to building more treatment centres rather than more prisons as the rehabilitation aspect of incarceration is not working.
Follow this link to read this article and feel free to discuss your thoughts and feelings related to this: