Fact Sheets

Marijuana arrests are the engine driving the U.S. war on drugs. In 2012, there were 749,825 marijuana arrests in the U.S. – nearly half of all drug arrests. Almost 90 percent of these arrests were for simple...

Decriminalization of marijuana possession is a necessary first step toward a more comprehensive reform of the drug prohibition regime. However decriminalization alone does not address many of the greatest harms of...

There is an extensive body of literature documenting the stigma associated with alcohol and other drug problems. No physical or psychiatric condition is more associated with social disapproval and discrimination than...

Portugal enacted one of the most extensive drug law reforms in the world when it decriminalized low-level possession and use of all illicit drugs more than a decade ago.  Results of the Portuguese experience...

Many U.S. cities are taking steps to reduce the role of criminalization in their local drug policies. Seattle, Washington has been at the forefront of this effort, pioneering a novel pre-booking diversion program for...

After first attempting to prohibit various synthetic drugs, New Zealand realized that simply banning these substances was unrealistic and ineffective.  In July 2013, the country’s Parliament enacted an...

A series of synthetic products have emerged that simulate the effects of prohibited drugs like marijuana, ecstasy (MDMA), opioids, cocaine and methamphetamine. Often called “legal highs” or “...

The global war on drugs is severely jeopardizing the fight against AIDS. Criminalizing drug use drives the HIV pandemic not just among people who use drugs – but also among their families and communities.

The U.S. refuses to adopt an evidence-based HIV/AIDS prevention strategy, costing us hundreds of thousands of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars. However, in countries where addiction is treated as a health...

Supervised injection facilities (SIFs) are controlled health care settings where people can more safely inject drugs under clinical supervision and receive health care, counseling and referrals to health and social...

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