“It is important that we develop more visibility in the activities of civil society, and CND60 has been successful in this.” – Antonio J. Molina, Therapeutic Coordinator at Dianova Spain
What did you think of the CND60 session?
To begin with, attending the Commission on Narcotic Drugs in Vienna (CND in its acronym in English) is always a privilege for those professionals who have the opportunity to attend, especially when you have the chance to actively participate in events and projects. In this regard, the number of activities and meetings that may be developed during the CND is huge, so one should devise a clear plan of action and well-organized agenda.
For me, this 60th CND was very interesting, more because of the UNODC’s own activity and that of the NGOs than because of the government activities, which have been somewhat more bureaucratic or routine.
Do you think the topics discussed at the United Nations in Vienna are consistent with the realities and issues that you encounter in your day-to-day activities? What issues have you missed? Were you surprised by any of the topics covered?
With regard to treatment and prevention, I have not seen major developments in relation to previous events. Yes, I have seen the commitments of the various entities (governments, agencies and NGOs) to work together, especially on issues related to policy development, research, development of new forums, etc.
I wish there had been a little more on the operational aspects on how to coordinate these activities after the CND session, especially on the participation of NGOs. In side events, I would have liked more events on intervention programs, either on treatment or prevention. There are shortcomings regarding the reporting of data on evaluations of programs and policies, especially to facilitate decision-making on what to improve, what to eliminate and what to enhance in addictions programs.
“Something has in fact happened in the field of NGOs that surprised me a lot, and that is the polarization between the anti-legalization/drug-free movement and pro-legalization/damage-reduction movement. This polarization has a negative aspect, which is that it is based on antagonistic positions that do not always correspond with what takes place in reality.”
In my case, I coordinate both harm-reduction programs as well as programs based on recovery. But it has had a very positive aspect, which has been the amount of activity displayed by both movements during the CND, even before the event.
It is important that we develop more visibility in the activities of civil society, and CND60 has been successful in this.
What message would you give to colleagues in the Dianova network?
I would say that very important issues have been addressed, that there has been an intense activity in events and meetings, that we have done all the networking that is possible in a week, that alliances have been strengthened, that new contacts have been generated … And surely we will reap the fruits of all that work.
“Finally, I encourage all to participate in these events. And to participate as actively as possible, if possible, to present projects and work. We must make our activity visible. In that way, we all win.”