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Protect human rights of people who use drugs

Thursday, 26th June, 2014 9:38am

'Support, Don't Punis' is the message from an international awareness campaign coming to Cork today.The worldwide campaign aims to change national policies on drug use which criminalise drug users and "deter access to harm reduction utilities”.Protests will take place today in over 80 cities, coinciding with the anniversary of the foundation of the United Nations.

Olivia Teahan, Chairperson of the UCC Students for Sensible Drug Policy Society, who organised the Cork protest, explains that the campaign aims “to promote the protection of human rights of people who use drugs”.  

“We aim to highlight the negative effects of criminalising those who use drugs and specifically for people who have been caught for non-violent drug offences and the negative effects of criminalising those people.

“Students for Sensible Drug Policy work to help young people form an opinion on drug policy in Ireland and to educate themselves about what reform is needed concerning drug policy,” she explains. “At the moment, the 1977 Misuse of Drugs Act is in place in Ireland and we're promoting to young people and students how that law is just not effective anymore and doesn't benefit the people of Ireland - both people who use drugs and people who don't.”The Cork protest begins in Daunt Square at 11.30am. Speakers will include Jim Duffy who is a retired police officer and member of LEAP:UK Law Enforcement Against Prohibition; as well as members of UCC and CIT SSDP Seán Lynch, Graham de Barra and Martin Condon.

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