Scotland is a Country in the United Kingdom located in the northern region of Great Britain. It shares a 96-mile border with England to the southeast, while the remaining boundaries are covered by the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, the North Sea to the northeast and east, and the Irish Sea to the south.
The Scottish government has called for the decriminalization of all drugs for personal use, advocating for a paradigm shift in the approach to drug policy. The government wants to redirect the focus towards treating and supporting individuals rather than subjecting them to criminalization and exclusion. Although the possession of drugs with the intent to supply would still remain an offense.
According to BBC, Scotland’s Minister for Drugs and Alcohol Policy, Elena Whitham, highlighted that the war on drugs has not effectively deterred drug use, prevented associated harms, or reduced fatalities. Elena argues that criminalization intensifies the negative consequences experienced by individuals, and the government needs to increase substance checking services and improve access to emergency treatments for drug overdoses.
However, the UK government disagreed with the Scottish government’s stance, emphasizing the destructive impact of illegal drugs on lives and communities. They expressed concerns about the proposal, citing associated risks posed by organized criminals who may exploit such a policy shift.