Top British Cop calls for end to war on drugs

Prohibition on drugs hasn’t worked, nor did it work on booze. It was ridiculous to even suggest it may have worked. Prohibition has never worked anywhere in the world.

Even countries with the death penalty for drug offences have drug problems. The world over people are starting to wake up to the issue.

Class A drugs should be decriminalised and drug addicts “treated and cared for not criminalised”, according to a senior UK police officer.

Writing in the Observer, Chief Constable Mike Barton of Durham Police said prohibition had put billions of pounds into the hands of criminals.

He called for an open debate on the problems caused by drugs.

The Home Office reiterated its stance and said drugs were illegal because they were dangerous. 

I’ve blogged on the experience with Portugal, which is precisely what Mike Barton is describing.

The chief constable – who is the intelligence lead for the Association of Chief Police Officers – said he believed decriminalisation of Class A drugs would take away the income of dealers, destroy their power, and that a “controlled environment” would be a more successful way of tackling the issue.

He said when faced with the “extremely damaging” impacts of alcohol, his argument to decriminalise drugs may appear weakened, but called for an open and honest debate on the matter.

A petition is calling on the government to follow the advice of the Home Affairs Committee and introduce a Royal Commission on drug law reform.

Mr Barton said: “If an addict were able to access drugs via the NHS or something similar, then they would not have to go out and buy illegal drugs.

“Buying or being treated with, say, diamorphine is cheap. It’s cheap to produce it therapeutically.

“Not all crime gangs raise income through selling drugs, but most of them do in my experience. So offering an alternative route of supply to users cuts their income stream off.

“What I am saying is that drugs should be controlled. They should not, of course, be freely available.”

Treat drugs just like we do alcohol and tobacco.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

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