Drug Policy Conference, Tbilisi, November 8 2017
The drug control regime in Georgia has been focusing primarily on law enforcement measures to target supply and availability of particular drugs and to reduce demand through imposing harsh punishment on drug users. There is no evidence available suggesting any positive results in terms of reduction in the prevalence of problem drug use and/or its negative consequences. In contrary, repressive response that heavily relied on consumer sanctions resulted in criminalization of tens of thousands of otherwise law obeying people and undermined a public health initiatives by creating barriers for individuals in need to access prevention and treatment services. In June 2017 group of MPs submitted to Georgian Parliament a proposal for legislative changes in drug related laws. This initiative was developed by the Georgian National Drug Policy Platform (GNDPP) - coalition of 40+ organizations - and implies balancing drug related approach in the country and shifting priorities towards prevention, treatment and care (instead of punishment) for individuals affected by substance use and dependence.
The conference was jointly organized by the Georgian National Drug Policy Platform and the Health and Social Issues Committee of the Parliament. The aim of the conference was to provide a review of planned reforms and share the perspectives
of Georgian government and relevant international organizations towards the proposed changes.
The drug policy reform in Georgia is supported by the following organizations: UNAIDS, IDPC and Global Commission on Drugs.
Agenda of the conference
Evaluating drug policy - A seven-step guide (Eoghan Cuigley, PhD, drug policy, Contents coordination and trend analysis sector Scientific analyst, EMCDDA)