Canada: BC Business-Academic Panel Tells Government to Consider Legalizing Drugs

A very establishment advisory group to British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell has advised the Liberal leader that if he wants to deal with crime and illegal drugs in the province, he has two starkly contrasting choices: Legalize it, or unleash an all-out drug war. The panel from the BC Progress Board made the recommendations in a research report released November 15, "Reducing Crime and Improving Criminal Justice in British Columbia: Recommendations for Change."

The BC Progress Board is a group of 18 businessmen and academics selected by the provincial government to provide advice on economic and social issues. Simon Fraser University criminologist Rob Gordon, a board member, was the report's primary author.

The report comes as BC grapples with crime rates higher than the Canadian average. The board identified illegal drug use and the drug trade as one of four motors driving crime in the province. The others were deficient child rearing and services, mental illness, and the "impoverished and unstable lifestyles" of many people living in inner urban areas.

In its second recommendation to Premier Campbell, the board said that "the provincial government must address the problem of the illegal trade in drugs in a clear and consistent manner." The first option it listed was to "lobby the federal government to legalize the trade, perhaps limiting access to products to adults in the same way that access to alcohol and tobacco is limited."

That would allow the government to treat drug use and abuse as public health -- not criminal justice -- problems and would allow the government to obtain revenue from taxing the sales of drugs.

But the BC Progress Board was careful to note that it was not endorsing drug legalization, merely providing options for the provincial government. The board's second recommendation on drug policy made that perfectly clear. In the event legalization proves impossible to implement, the board suggested, "the provincial government should provide the resources to eliminate the drug trade entirely in the province." Alternately, the board suggested a combination of recommendations one and two. The province should first spend 10 years trying to wipe out the drug trade, then move to legalization.

While the board's recommendations are not exactly a clarion call for legalization, the panel put the idea squarely on the table.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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No S***, NO DRUGS??

No way..No how...can you stop people who want to obtain drugs from obtaining them. What to do you ask. Legalize them and track consumption. Offer maximim and minimum amounts of drugs currently under a number 1 schedule. Offenders who present with addiction (procuring drugs from other sources) harming themselves and others could be sent to treatment instutions instead of jail.
People who go to jail go in with a B.A. in marijuana and come out with a Masters in distribution. They make connections and aquire the means to advance drugs...not rehabilitate.
If one decides to keep oneself on a maintainance amount of herione than so be it. If one wants to jones all night looking for rocks of cocaine on the floor....let'em crawl. At least the Government will know how much legal amount of the drug they are taking as well as profiting from their personal choice to make nothing of their lives. Come on. We all know a little drug here and there won't kill you (in most circumstances). And it is one's God given right to partake in the comsumption of intoxicating "wine" (Bible) Coke,pot,valium, herione or extacy Drugs of our day not Jesus's day.

To wrap things up, no drugs...no way. One can never stop it so why not control it. take it away from the criminal element. Provide quality drugs with education and rehabilitation when needed. NOT JAIL. Keep those cells open for our child molesters and murders.

Please you'll never know if you don't try to find a solution to a war on drugs that will never be won. It is very similar to our situation in Iraq. If you can't find a way to win let those who control their destony destroy themselves.

Jeffrey

u

What are you on????

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