International Day Against Drug Abuse
International Day Against Drug Abuse and Trafficking" A celebration of the ongoing human rights abuses faced by people who use illicit drugs.
Australian drug users have called on Federal politicians to investigate the serious abuses of human rights in our country and in our region in the name of the “war on drugs”.
Gary Meyerhoff, the Acting President of AIVL, the Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League said that he hopes that Australia’s Drug Action Week and global activities planned for tomorrow will remind politicians of the fear, stigma, discrimination, loss of liberty and life that many people face in our own country and across our region.
The 26th of June is the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Trafficking coordinated by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. This is a day of celebration for the declining number of law enforcement officials worldwide who, despite the obvious failure of the twentieth century drug prohibition experiment, still believe that they can eradicate drug use from our society.
In China, the day will be celebrated with the usual mass execution of people who have been convicted of drug offences and whose executions have been delayed for this special occasion.
The Republic of Singapore Airforce will continue to train at bases in Australia, despite having the highest execution rate in the world per capita. One young Australian, convicted of a non-violent drug offence is currently on death row in Singapore’s Changi prison waiting to be hung.
The theme for this years international day is “Treatment Works”. This theme has been embraced by the Thai Government with the introduction of compulsory treatment regimes for people who use illicit substances. Many thousands of people have been jailed for failing to comply with treatment. In Thailand last year, the same year that the Australian Federal Police established an outpost at Chang Mai, three thousand people were killed in what have been called “extra-judicial” killings.
In Australia more and more people are using illicit drugs and our jails are expanding as state and territory governments continue to roll out zero-tolerance drug policy. The jail population in Australia has increased by fifty per cent over the last decade. The number of women in Australian jails has increased by one hundred per cent.
There is clear evidence that zero-tolerance drug policy is responsible for the unacceptably high incidence of hepatitis C among injecting drug users in Australia.
The Acting President of AIVL, Gary Meyerhoff said “It will be a dark day for members of the vast majority of the world’s population who ingest substances that in many countries have been prohibited due to ignorance and fear fuelled by the drug war propaganda flowing from the United States.”
“We can only hope that some politicians, somewhere in this country, will start to question this madness.”