International Journal of Drug Policy Special Issue

Legal regulation as a human rights and public health approach to currently prohibited substances

This special section of the International Journal of Drug Policy consists of a collection of 10 conceptual and empirical papers that were developed in response to an International Research Roundtable, held in June 2019. The Roundtable was sponsored by the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies and hosted by the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition in partnership with researchers from UBC's School of Nursing. Additional support was received from the Community Action Initiative and the BC Centre for Disease Control Foundation for Public Health.

The question examined during this Roundtable was: How can a human rights and public health approach to the legal regulation of currently prohibited substances better respond to the drug poisoning crises currently devastating people and communities globally? This Roundtable brought together 35 scholars, drug policy advocates, policymakers, and people who use drugs from across a variety of countries, including Mexico, Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada to tackle this question through facilitated sessions, research exchanges, public events and media engagement, as well as field visits to harm reduction and addiction services operating in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.

(Note: The Special Issue on legal regulation is also released in conjunction with one on the legalization of cannabis in Canada.)