Criminalization of drug use is a major driver of the international HIV/AIDS pandemic, according to a new report from the Global Commission on Drug Policy and reported by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). Advocates say one-third of new HIV cases outside of sub-Saharan Africa are linked to intravenous drug use. They argue that repressive, tough-on-drugs policies drive intravenous drug users underground, thereby encouraging unsafe practices that can spread HIV/AIDS, such as sharing used syringes and needles. As an alternative to drug criminalization policies, they cite British Columbia’s syringe distribution programs and supervised injection facilities as successful efforts to reduce HIV transmission rates.

To read the CBC article, click here.