Norwegian drug addicts have a chance to buzz off drug addiction from their body without imprisonment as Norway’s court has decided to sentence the drug addicts to “treatment” rather than sending to prison.
The narcotics program “narkotikaprogrammet” will head on to sweep the drug addiction nationwide. The program was given green sign after successful trials in Bergen and Oslo.
Justice Minister Anders Andundsen who has announced the program said: “We’re rolling out a program that has been tested since 2006, in which addicts have been sentenced to treatment with concrete follow-up.” according t0 a report by News in English.no.
“The goal is that more addicts will rid themselves of their drug-related health problems and fewer will return to crime. But if the terms of the programme are violated, the convicts must serve an ordinary prison term.”
Conservative Party, a minority government in a centrist coalition, has formulated the law and was supported by all parties in Norweigan parliament.
Nevertheless, the new enactment have been criticised by various political players. Right-Wing pundits have contented the move and said that drug possession should be considered a criminal offence and none should be given free way in name of this law. Although left wing thinks that the law is not strong enough to secure drug addicts.
Arild Knutsen, a drug liberalisation campaigner, said: “Addicts will still be treated like criminals. Drug rehab programmes are still a form of punishment, and that’s not what these people need. They need help.”
Independent reports that such drug-addiction programmes have shown positive effect on drug addicts across European countries by improving healthcare facilities and removing problems, such as prison sentences, employment difficulties and stigmatisation.
In 2001, Portugal adopted a similar narcotics program. It decriminalised the use of drugs such as – weed, cocaine, heroin and many others. After 15 years, officials noticed that the number of drug addicts fell nationwide. Now British people have 15% chances of death from drug than the Portuguese, wrote the Independent.
Some other countries like the Netherlands, Colombia and Spain are also working on similar narcotic programs.