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    drugs society Spain chess ajedrezdrogas sociedad España 2020 estudio ICEERS

    Drugs and Society in Spain in the 2020s


    Drugs and society in Spain in the 2020s: challenges and political-legislative proposals

    José Carlos Bouso, and Constanza Sánchez Avilés.

    Revista Española de Drogodependencias



    About the study

    In recent years, there are many voices that have worked for the incorporation of human rights in the design and implementation of policies on drugs, as these, having been too focused on reducing supply from a securitarian and punitive perspective, have generated more harm than benefits.

    The authors propose a structural change in the logic of public management, which should stop thinking in therapeutic-penalistic terms and start formulating responses and solutions in terms of dialogue and care with civil society.

    Consequently, the authors stress the need to understand mental health beyond the biomedical model, as the result of a series of social, political, cultural and economic obstacles that prevent people from achieving the highest possible level of physical and mental health.



    This article aims to outline the basis of an alternative proposal to the traditional approach to drug policy and drug dependence in Spain. It is based on a critical analysis of the currently predominant hegemonic model, which is considered to be limited for two fundamental reasons. The first is its excessively biomedical and individualised approach to the treatment of mental health problems (and, therefore, drug dependence). The second is its emphasis on repressive and punitive measures to manage the social challenges related to adult recreational drug use and, especially, the problems arising from the existence of illicit drug markets. Both limitations have made it necessary for public policy to manage not only the consequences of substance use but also the consequences of drug policies themselves. As an alternative, we outline a model that combines a non-stigmatising approach to psychoactive substances with the centrality of human rights as the fundamental axis that should guide drug policies. We will focus on the specific cases of psychotropic substances (psilocybin, LSD and MDMA) and psychoactive plants of traditional origin, such as ayahuasca or coca leaf. With a more reflexive than academic intention, but as a result of the authors’ experience in research and advocacy in this field, this article outlines some elements that could be taken into consideration when designing a drug policy that is more focused on community health and care, based on human rights, the participation of civil society and the objective evaluation of public policies.



    Link to the study


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    Photo by Randy Fath on Unsplash.

    Categories: Studies & papers , Drug policies
    Tags: Human Rights , scientific research , study , drug policy , psychoactive plants , regulation , psychotropic drugs , narcotic drugs