Preparations for the next high-level meeting on drug policy worldwide
By Lucía Goberna – The Commission on Narcotic Drugs of the United Nations (CND) met in Vienna from 25 to 28 September of 2018 to pave the way for the Ministerial Segment event in March 2019. Dianova International was present at the preparatory meetings.
The Ministerial Segment will be the next high-level meeting to discuss drug policies. In the Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation towards an Integrated and Balanced Strategy to Counter the World Drug Problem , the year 2019 was set as the target to review the situation with regard to the objectives laid out in the Political Declaration. Therefore, the Ministerial Segment will analyse the degree of implementation of the commitments made and will set out the future approach to tackle the world drug problem.
In recent years there has been an increase in the production of drugs that are increasingly numerous, diverse and appearing at a faster rate. In addition, we are facing a situation in which in some parts of the world people die of opiate overdoses, while in others, people barely have access to controlled medicines to alleviate pain and a non-medical use of prescription drugs has been observed. These are just some of the recent trends in the world drug problem highlighted in the World Drug Report 2018 , and lay the foundations for the negotiations of the Ministerial Segment of 2019.
Taking into account the recent agreement reached with the approval of the UNGASS outcome document, the last high-level agreement reached in 2016, the CND has organised a series of intersessional meetings before March 2019 in order to present the positions of the Member States and analyse the opinions of experts from all over the world, and to finalise the organisational details for the preparation of the Ministerial Segment.
The first of this series was the CND61 3rd intersessional meeting, which took place from 25 to 28 September and which was attended by representatives of Member States, representatives of international agencies, academia and civil society. The meeting focused on the aspects of demand reduction, access to controlled substances, and cross-cutting issues relating to human rights, children, youth, women and communities, as well as organisational matters in preparation for the Ministerial Segment in March 2019.
Innovative practices were showcased, and various stakeholders presented reports and discussed how they would like to shape future drug policies. The was a session that included a highly participatory and informative discussion.
Participation of civil society and Dianova Spain
As members of civil society, and specifically as members of the Council of the Vienna NGO Committee on Drugs (VNGOC) and the Civil Society Task Force (CSTF), we are pleased with the quality, variety and inclusion of the contributions of the civil society speakers and we are grateful for the opportunity to be able to set out the viewpoints of different civil society organisations.
Dianova Spain is the appointed civil society representative for demand reduction to present evidence-based interventions used in Dianova’s recovery and reintegration programmes.
It is noted that throughout these sessions, 15 civil society representatives had the opportunity – either in person or via a video message – to address Member State representatives and the experts gathered in Vienna. We are pleased to announce that the representative for Dianova Spain, Antonio Molina, was selected as 1 of the 15 speakers from among the 64 nominations received, to discuss harm reduction and related measures. Antonio Molina presented the evidence-based interventions used Dianova’s recovery and reintegration programmes. You can access his video message here.