CuPIHD / Información, responsabilidad, libertad
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International Forum on Drugs and Human Rights

This week signals an opening of the discussion on the recognition of the rights of drug users, the regulation of drugs and particularly regulating marijuana in Mexico City.

As part of CuPIHD’s institutional agreement with the Human Rights Commission of the Mexico City (CDHDF), they have jointly organized the International Forum on Drugs and Human Rights, which will feature panel discussions on comparative international experiences, health, education, security, justice and culture.  The forum includes a keynote address by Damon Barrett of Harm Reduction International and who is an expert on the international legal systems of both human rights and drug policy.  

The forum seeks to answer questions not only posed by society, but also those which arise among and between the community of human rights defenders.

 Some of these questions include: are drugs a legitimate reason for violating human rights? Do drug users have human rights? How can we best limit access to drugs by minors? What role does education and educational communities play regarding the presence of drugs among the student population? Is there discrimination in employment regarding drug use in Mexico? What are the health services that are required to address the drug problem in the country? Are drug users a vulnerable population in terms of their human rights? What role does stigma and discrimination play in the use of drugs? What is the drug economy? What is the role and impact of drugs among persons deprived of their liberty? Does Mexico need drug courts? Or do they violate certain rights? Should treatments be conditional? And finally: What is more important to respect and enforce: the international standards of human rights or the international drug control system?

CUPIHD and the Human Rights Commission of the Federal District invites all those interested to attend the International Forum on Drugs and Human Rights, from August 7 - 9, 2013, in the CDHDF.

For more information and links to registration

See you there!

Here are the results from our monthly poll on our web page

Marijuana Regulation and President Fox

This past weekend the first US-Mexico Symposium on Legalization of Medical Marijuana Use was held at the Vicente Fox Center in the state of Guanajuato, Mexico.  Convened by former President, Vicente Fox, this event signaled an additional dialogue route on drug policy reform.
During the event, specialists with a diverse set of expertise from the US and Mexico, provided information on the opportunities and challenges involved in different forms of regulation regarding access and use of cannabis.
Among the most knowledgeable presenters was Alison Holcomb, author of Initiative 502 in Washington State, which regulates the cannabis.  Alison noted that there is a need to regulate production licenses that must be accompanied by established consumption regulations for personal use and that these quantities must be appropriate to the realities of the market. Steph Sherer, head of Americans for Safe Access, highlighted that in the United States there are a million patients using cannabis, a growing trend that comes from the increase of therapeutic use in California that occurred during the 80s, when the country faced the spread of the HIV virus and patients began to use it to reduce nausea food and improve their quality of life.
On the Mexican side, Lisa Sanchez of Mexico United Against Crime, highlighted the different forms of corporate regulation in the world and the many possibilities from which Mexico could choose to regulate. Julio Frenk, Former Health Minister with the Fox Administration elaborated on the possibilities of the medical use of marijuana and the need for research in the field.  He also emphasized that a primary result of the current drug policy (and the homicide epidemic it has unleashed) has been a decrease of one year in life expectancy.
The Ambassador of the Netherlands, Hogewoning Dolf, also participated and in addition to detailing the Dutch model and the benefits of controlling hard drugs, he shared that the Netherlands has lower drug use than the European average.  He described closing coffee shops in southern Netherlands, due to stricter regulations to decrease “drug tourism,” however he stressed that these municipalities autonomous decision should not be seen as a return to prohibition but as a reinforcement of the regulation. He also emphasized that increased with these increased restrictions, the municipalities have experienced crime increases, and a strengthening of the black market---leading to a suspension of the policy.
Participants from CuPIHD noted the need to include users in the discussions and to remember that there are specific rights within the Mexican law. CuPIHD also called on legislators to eliminate ambiguities in the decriminalization of drug possession, which exists in the Small Scale Drug Trafficking Law.  CuPIHD shared their position regarding the commercial plant cultivation which was proposed by former President, Fox, and which we believe prioritizes business development over the need to guarantee user rights, access to information and efficient health services.
If you smoke marijuana, remember that it is better to only smoke after completing your daily activities, since it can disturb your concentration and reduce some of your abilities. Never avoid your responsibilities because of drug use and you can ensure that it does not represent a problem in your life.  
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