Uruguay – National Debate on Drugs

Débat national sur les drogues

The Dianova Foundation in Uruguay participated in the first national debate on drugs, held in Montevideo from 29 to 31 August.

In Uruguay, substance abuse related issues have become more and more extensive in recent years. However, some prominent political and social figures blow the whistle on the overall inadequacy of public responses and call for the implementation of a large national debate that could result in “a new generation of drug policies”.

Excerpt from press release

“”What brought us together is our commitment to developing policies that respect the rights of citizens; it is the search of public policies which are likely to improve service quality in a society where people are free to make their own choices. We offer a plural and inclusive debate which addresses a multi-faceted phenomenon, a debate that has broad institutional support, to ensure that political leaders and civil society can work more closely to implement well-suited governmental policies.

The national debate on drugs comprised three types of activities, including thematic sessions with experts from various fields who have shared their techniques and experiences on the ground; conferences addressing specific topics; and multidisciplinary and participatory workshops.

The Dianova Foundation participated in the event as part of a thematic session, “Education and local involvement”. During the latter, Mr. Gerardo Rumbo, executive director of Dianova in Uruguay and project manager, gave an overview of the various programs and activities implemented locally by Dianova, including the project: “Drugs, Gender and Decentralization, a Holistic Approach”.

A large audience attended the thematic session, including social actors, participants from all walks of life and public and private organizations who have freely and respectfully exchanged ideas at the end of presentations, the themes of which were:

  • Compliance and integration of existing local knowledge
  • Integration of different perspectives and technical and professional disciplines
  • Conservation of existing networks.

“Addiction, Gender and Decentralization, a Holistic Approach”

Co-funded by the European Union, the project is in line with human rights and gender-related approaches in the Uruguayan context. The project’s purpose is to promote the overall health and quality of life of adolescents and young adults with psychosocial vulnerability, with special attention to situations of gender inequality, problematic use of psychotropic drugs and the additional risk factor of pregnancy and motherhood situations among disadvantaged adolescents.

The project is jointly developed by the Dianova Foundation in Uruguay and the Casa Luna association, with the support of Uruguay’s national council on drugs –  Junta Nacional de Drogas.