News from WFAD

WFAD invites, together with Drug Policy Futures, Recovered Users Union and UNODC, to a side event that will highlight the importance of recovery.

The side event will take place on December 9 at Vienna International Center, in connection with the reconvened CND at 13.00.

Recovery is a way to enable for individuals who have developed drug related problems to function effectively in society and to empower them to take control of their own lives. Community based recovery fellowship provide important opportunities for mutual help. Treatment systems must provide a wide range of effective services to assist people who use drugs in their efforts to recover. These services must be based on the same rigorous evidence and the same principle of non-discrimination that are expected in other sectors of the health system.

The aim of the event is to discuss recovery both in theory and in practice. Boro Goic, representative of recovered users in the Civil Society Task Force, will share the preliminary results from his consultation with recovery organizations around the world. We will also discuss the scientific basis for recovery and how UNODC works to promote recovery from drug addiction.

Speakers
Boro Goic Chairman, Recovered Users Network, representing recovered users in the Civil Society Task Force
David Best Professor of Criminology Development and Society, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
Gilberto Gerra Chief, Drug Prevention and Health Branch, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 

Moderator
Linda Nilsson Secretary General, World Federation Against Drugs

Organized by:
World Federation Against Drugs
Recovered Users Network
Drug Policy Futures
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

5th World Forum Against Drugs

 

The 5th World Forum Against Drugs is planned to take plcae in Vienna, Austria on March 12-13, 2016! 

2016 is a special year in international drug policy. The UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on the world drug problem will be hosted on April 19-21. This is the biggest meeting on the world drug problem in almost 20 years. Member states and the civil society begun the preparation for the UNGASS meeting already in 2012.

WFAD plans to host the 5th World Forum Against Drugs before the start of the 59th CND meeting and we will invite all our members to the Forum, so please save the date for this important meeting!

The aim of the Forum will be two folded; to share the knowledge and experience of member organization together with new knowledge and experience in from researchers; and to gather the best practices to also be put forward to the member states at the CND meeting. The CND meeting will be one of the last opportunitites to influence member states before the UNGASS meeting.
 
More information will come about practical details around the Forum and also more detailed program.
 
If you have any questions or input for the Forum please contact Linda Nilsson

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The following resolution was adopted at the closing ceremony of the 17th Congress of Addiction, hosted by Centros de IntegraciĂłn de Juvenil and World Federation Against Drugs.  


1. Nowadays, the participation of the organized civil society is strategic to frame broad impact public policies that favor global wellbeing.

2. Our children and youth have the right to grow up in a drug-free environment, where they can achieve their full potential.

3. We defend the Article 33 of the Convention of the Rights of the Child to protect childhood from drug-abuse:

"States Parties shall take all appropriate measures, including legislative, administrative, social and educational measures, to protect children from the illicit use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances as defined in the relevant international treaties, and to prevent the use of children in the illicit production and trafficking of such substances."


4. Drug-abuse is a global problem that harms millions and unbalance families, the foundation of sound communities and nations. Civil society has the right to rely on itself and its government work for a drug-free environment

5. The essence of drug policies should be health safeguarding and to contribute to the development of safe community environments, impervious to illegal drug supply.

6. Social development, democratic improvement, and equality should be the basis of far-reaching policies in terms of its effects and permanency.

On road to UNGASS 2016, we declare our commitment to:

Discuss the current drug-audit global system while affirming the key objectives of international conventions.

Drive scientific debates in relation to drugs, where the main objective is to preserve community health, and particularly that of children and youth, the most-at-risk population.

Foster in every country the respect for human rights for users and non-users alike, as well as the right to health and social insertion.

Avoid stigmatization of substance users. Instead, strengthen their way back to society.

Favor in each legislation laws made to ponder the proportionality in sentencing for drug possession.

Settle options of alternative justice to support the social reintegration of people that have committed drug crimes.

Have influence upon the governments so that they strengthen civil programs focused on prevention, treatment and social reintegration, as well as on the training of professionals that deal with its assistance and study. 3

Close the existent budget gaps between the programs oriented to fight drug supply and those directed to drug demand reduction.

Raise governments, civil society and community’s awareness of the fact that accessibility to work, education, culture, and amusement are the best basis against drug consumption and trafficking.

Inform governments, civil society, mass media, social media and community about the risks of legalizing drugs.

For all of the above reasons, it is thus essential to set up a new institutional network, where the same principles are shared, working to counter legalization of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, and whose main objective is to gain a greater impact, continental in scope, and favoring social welfare and that of childhood and youth particularly.

Dear civil society representatives,

The United Nations General Assembly Special Session, UNGASS, on the world drug problem will be held on 19-21 April 2016. This is the most important meeting around drugs at international level in 20 years. I am writing to you to ask for you expertise in your prevention work as an input to the UNGASS meeting.

In order to include the views and work of civil society, a Civil Society Task Force (CSTF) has been created.  The CSTF acts as official liaison between the United Nations and civil society in the preparatory process of and at the UNGASS.  The objective of the CSTF is to ensure a comprehensive, structured, meaningful and balanced participation of civil society in this process.

The CSTF consists of 31 members representing regions in the world, affected populations and global voices. I represent the global voice of prevention and this is the reason why I am writing to you. I am interested in collecting the voices of civil society around prevention. In particular, I am interested in knowing (i) your best practices and ideas on how to prevent illicit drug use and (ii) your views on global drug policies.
The UNGASS will be structured in five different thematic areas:
  1. Drugs and health;
  2. Drugs and crime;
  3. Human rights, women, children and communities;
  4. New challenges, threats and realities in addressing the world drug problem;
  5. Drugs and (alternative) development.
You are invited to share your input with me along these thematic areas and/or the lines below:
  • What works in prevention and where do you see room for improvement;
  • What do we know and where do we need more knowledge;
  • Innovating ideas;
  • Drug policies and their implementation;
  • Your expectations from UNGASS and beyond.
I also ask you to share descriptions of your prevention models if possible. I aim to add all the models/descriptions/manuals around prevention to the report as an appendix. This will be an important input to the UNGASS process.
Please also remember to state the name and region of your organization and send me ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) your reply by December 1. 
 
Sincerely,
 
Linda Nilsson
Secretary General, World Federation Against Drugs
Member of Civil Society Task Force, representing prevention
Phone: +46705734259
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Skype: rns_linda
No to Legalization and more focus on prevention strategies and programs in West Africa 

The First West African Forum on Drugs took place in Lagos, Nigeria on July 8-10 and gathered Ăśver 60 participants from Nigeria and neibouring countries. The theme of the conference was "Mainstreaming Health and Child-Right Concerns in Substance Abuse Policy, Planning and Programming in West Africa". 

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The invited speakers that presented on the theme came form civil society organizations, UNODC and governmental officials. 

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The conclusions form the Forum was presented in a communique. The communique expressed concern over the trends and efforts of some persons and organizations in the region to legalize som substances that are now classified as illegal for non-medical use. The Communique also highlighted the need to develop prevention strategies and programs in the region. The whole communique can be found here

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Call for participatnts 

WFAD and People Against Drug Dependency & Ignorance are inviting NGOs in the West African region to the 1st West African Forum on Drugs!

The conference will take place in Lagos Nigeria the 8th - 10th of July 2015. We are inviting interested Civil Society Organizations working in the areas of Drug Demand Reduction programs across the West African sub-region to register interest for the confrerence. The theme of the conference is: Mainstreaming Health and Child-Right Concerns in Substance Abuse Policy, Planning and Programming in West Africa.

To enhance interaction between NGOs/CSOs and stakeholder in the field of Drug abuse issues, the Forum will also invite representatives of relevant professional bodies and public sector Policy administrators and formulators in the Drug control issues. The West African Forum on Drugs, will also serve as an opportunity to urge greater CSO/NGO involvement in the forthcoming United Nations General Assembly Special Session on the Worlds Drug Problems (UNGASS 2016).

For more details around the conference please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it (+234-8152677926) Director of People Against Drugs Dependency & Ignorance and board member of WFAD.  MG 5122
‘Interview with a Partae Girl’ presents a candid and insightful interview with teenager Jenna, who reflects on her own journey with drugs. Jenna started smoking at age 14, and her drug use spiralled out of control over the coming years, with Jenna using increasing amounts of both legal and illegal drugs to cope with life.

Partae - Interview with a party girl
A STUDY GUIDE BY FIONA HALL
On December 3, WFAD arranged the first regional conference in South Amerika.

Many South American countries are nowadays undergoing suffering and poverty because of problems related to drug production, increased use and trafficking. The Board of WFAD therefore decided that it would be important to have the first WFAD South American Conference in Buenos Aires with the aim to spread methods and knowledge around which interventions that work for a comprehensive drug policy.

A Coordinating Commission was established, headed by WFAD Board member Prof. Mina Seinfeld de Carakushansky, a Brazilian who was the first Special Secretary for the Prevention of Drug Addiction in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Prof. Seinfeld de Carakushansky has also been the International Coordinator of the Program Forging Leadership for Drug Demand Reduction in Latin America. Mina has been keeping frequent and close contact over more than 15 years with many Latin American organizations and individuals working with the same aim: educating families and official authorities regarding the perils to society caused by drug use, building a network of strong ties with many outstanding professionals and institutions of the continent.
Argentina 1

The knowledge generated and spread by some of those professionals and their institutions has made them renown in many countries of the American continent, from North to South. Dr. Juan Alberto Yaria, General Director and Dr. Roberto Baiestrocchi, both from GRADIVA, were the main articulators locally, with the help of some other members of the Commission such as Jose Luis Viale, Diana Gomez and Carlos Peres Ulloa.

The number of participants was limited to 250, among the many others who also desired to participate in this Conference. Two excellent auditoriums were provided, free of cost, by the Barcelo School of Medicine, with all the necessary equipment regarding sound, image, professional translators, and technicians to care for all that, as well as the coffee-breaks.

The event, in one day, Dec. 3, 2014, resulted in a very dense conference, from 8AM to 7PM, where the main speaker was WFAD’s president, Sven-Olov Carlsson, explaining clearly what is the world scene regarding drug issues nowadays and what are the main principles which the WFAD has set for dealing with this very important and urgent subject.

All other speakers were carefully chosen among professionals who are leaders in their specific field of work and are sensitive and strive for a world with no drug use.

Since time was so precious, each speaker had only about 10 minutes to deliver his/her message and main thoughts. With no false modesties, it can be said that those speakers, because of their clear understanding, scientific knowledge and experience in the field, represent la crème de la crème of his/her own field of work. As examples of this statement, can be highlighted names such as “Father Pepe”, a Catholic renown Argentinean priest who is the Head of the Pastoral de Drogas and an advisor to Pope Francisco (who is Argentinean). Padre Pepe works with huge portions of Argentinean youth population who live in the slums. He is an inspiration and an example of spiritual effective work. Other speakers included Presidents of Associations (from Medical, Business, Education, etc.)

Also worth of highlighting among all the participants are Congressman Aurelio Elorrio and Maria Rosa Marcone de Pagano, who head the political party in Cordoba called “Encuentro Vecinal” (Neighborhood Encounter) who are organizing many youth seminars to teach the younger generations the risks of drug use and form the leaders of tomorrow. Dr. Jorge Gentile, a Supreme Court Judge, also from Cordoba and the President of Instituto Maritain and a high level lawyer in the field of finances who is determined, together with other leaders, to tackle more seriously and effectively the problem of drug trafficking.

The enthusiasm of working together for a common cause instilled hope and optimism that together we are stronger than by ourselves.
The next day, in a closed coordination meeting with WFAD President, the coordination group decided to aim at having an even bigger event in 2015 and invite more international speakers.
World Federation Against Drugs will participate in a high-level meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina on December 3, 2014. The International President, Sven-Olov Carlson, will be the central figure at the high-level meeting at the BarcelĂł University on drug prevention, treatment and enforcement, leading professionals from Argentina, Brazil and several other South American countries will also participate. 

A round table will open the event where the region's main problems regarding drugs and their possible solutions will be presented. Among the speakers will be Professor Mina Seinfeld de Carakushansky, WFAD Board member and President of BRAHA - Brazilian Humanitarians in Action; Calvina Fay, Executive Director of DFAF - Drug Free America Foundation; Jorge Jaber, President of ABRAD - Brazilian Association on Alcohol and Drugs; Jorge Gentile, renown Argentinean Judge and author; Neuza Amaral, Drug Prevention Secretary of Volta Redonda, Brazil; as well as the local Coordinators of the event including Juan Alberto Yaria, Director of Gradiva and Roberto Baiestrocchi of BarcelĂł University; Claudio and Luis Viale from Mariten Foundation; and Diana Gomez, in addition to many other high representatives from universities, religious, political, social and family associations.

For more information contact WFAD board member This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Thank you Ambassador Shaama.

Distinguished Representatives of the members states,

Colleagues form the NGO sector,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I speak on behalf of San Patrignano, World Federation Against Drugs, European Cities Against Drugs, European Action on Drugs, Drug Policy Futures and Recovered Users Network

We welcome the support of the member states to a meaningful and inclusive participation of the Civil Society in the preparation for the special session of the General Assembly on the world drug problem to be held in 2016.

We congratulate the Chair for the non-paper on the thematic discussions that should be addressed at the UNGASS meeting, and in this regard we would like to highlight the following thematic areas that we believe should be addressed by the member states with special attention:

-          Drug prevention

-          Recovery oriented treatment, including effective social reintegration

-          Enhanced cooperation between the Criminal Justice system and the Health system, Alternative sanctions empowering people to become drug-free, crime-free and integrated members of society

We would like to have the broad spectrum of civil society represented in the discussions we therefore support the creation of the Civil Society Task Force and we look forward to contribute to the Task Force.

In summery we put forward the following principles as an input to the UNGASS preparations:

-          Drug policies should prevent initiation of drug use.

-          Drug policies must respect human rights, for users and non-users alike, as well as the principle of proportionality.

-          Drug policies should strike a balance of efforts to reduce the use of drugs and the supply of drugs.

-          Drug policies should protect children from drug use.

-          Drug policies should ensure access to medical help, treatment and recovery services.

-          Drug policies should ensure access to controlled drugs for legitimate scientific and medical purposes.

-          Drug policies should ensure that medical and judicial responses are coordinated with the goal of reducing drug use and drug-related consequences.

All the above mentioned points are to be considered in full respect of the existing UN drug conventions, which we fully support in their current form.

Thank you for your attention! 

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