‘Fairly extreme’: Readers react to UK proposals to target ‘lifestyle’ drug users | Medications


Class A “lifestyle” drug users will be targeted as part of the government’s strategy, as it contends that their demand for drugs fuels exploitation.

The proposal to target “middle class” drug addicts by taking away their passports or driver’s licenses has been criticized by activists, who view the emphasis on punitive sentences as regressive.

Six readers share their views on the measures, with many saying the proposal is outdated, while others welcome the emphasis on occasional drug use.

“We need to draw attention to lifestyle users”

It’s important to consciously approach the idea of ​​a lifestyle user and I think any conversation about deterrence is valuable. I work with a lot of middle class youth, the vast majority of whom use drugs relatively safely. But I also work with young people at the bottom of the ladder: people without a safety net of supportive family relationships and a secure family income. These young people are exposed to the same culture of standardized drug use but without any protection. It must be recognized that this attitude is only functional in a very specific and secure socio-economic bubble, and that this bubble strongly influences the culture of the rest of society. If drugs are “cool” for the privileged, they will continue to be dangerous for others. Rebecca, 36, East Sussex, teacher

“Illegal drugs lead to a long supply chain of human misery and suffering”

I would be wrong on the Liberal side in terms of whether or not people choose to use drugs. I believe that legalizing less harmful drugs, like cannabis, would have a net benefit for humanity. However, what I would like to see changed more broadly is greater responsibility vis-à-vis the environmental and social impacts of our consumption. Illegal drugs lead to a long supply chain of human misery and suffering. That is why I am in favor of the bill. I support the point of view of collective responsibility – think about the effect your actions have on others, whether it’s kids lured into county lines or what’s going on in Colombia. This should be a reason for not getting involved in your kind of personal gratification for a short period of time. Cherie, 49, London, works in fashion

“The government is driven by outdated attitudes”

Every time in the last 20 or 30 years that there has been any move towards a change in drug policy, in any sense other than punitive, there has been a massive backlash from backbench MPs. and the more narrow-minded “Lock Them Up” Brigade. This proposal will have a pitiful effect on changing the illicit drug problem in the UK. Many countries around the world legalize recreational cannabis. The fact that we are wasting millions of pounds prosecuting teenagers for using / selling the same substance and ruining their lives and their future prospects by throwing them into a broken prison system, underlines how bad our current laws are. closed and ridiculous. James, 41, Reading, works in heritage

“It’s quite extreme to make someone lose their passport or their driving license”

While I think it’s good that drug policy doesn’t unfairly target the working class, I still think it’s pretty extreme to have someone lose their passport or driver’s license. This “war on drugs” approach has proven time and time again to only create more problems. If decriminalization can work for Portugal to reduce drug use, then it can work for the UK. It is time to stop treating it as a crime and as a public health problem. I think more money should be spent on drug education, for example by highlighting the number of deaths due to the global cocaine trade for only a gram or a kilo sold. Public health messages can be extremely effective, perhaps even more effective than advertising when done well. If we refuse to learn from history, we are simply doomed to repeat it. Joe, 28, designer, London

“I saw how drug trafficking devastated entire communities”

Overall I agree with that, but maybe I would make exceptions for people who are young and still “experimental” or those who have an addiction. But I see a lot of middle aged, educated, wealthy people who should know better. I was born in a European country and grew up in a poor neighborhood. I have seen with my own eyes how drug trafficking devastates entire communities, and it exists because some middle-aged idiots in London want to ‘have a little fun’. I think the confiscation of passports could have an impact on this category of people, but I think that three months in prison, followed by community service in places and with people affected by drug trafficking could also help them. to “see the light”. Anonymous, 57, management consultant, London

“I think the money should be used for the rehabilitation of drug addicts”

It’s stupid, it won’t work, it’s inapplicable and it’s a tragic waste of money. Being ‘tough on drugs’ has been the position for so long and it obviously hasn’t worked, and never will. I think the money should be used to open more needle sharing and rehabilitation centers for drug addicts with addiction issues and so on. town for four hours. It’s just another policy brought to us by the bright sparks that are as far away from real life as they can get. Ed, 25, Sales Manager, Manchester


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