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'I'll buy heroin for addicts' says top cop

By fnord, Feb 5, 2005 | | |
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  1. fnord
    i know this is probly the wrong forum but i figerd it would be more enjoyed here.

    'I'll buy heroin for addicts' says top cop Sep 6 2002




    Darren Devine Darren.Devine@Wme.Co.Uk, The Western Mail


    CONTROVERSIAL North Wales police chief Richard Brunstrom yesterday offered to buy heroin for drug addicts in a bid to prevent crime.

    He said he was ready to become the first chief constable in Britain to take such a radical step to try to halt the tide of drug-related crime that is sweeping across the country.

    The plan is just the latest in a long line of controversial ideas put forward by the outspoken chief con-stable on tackling the drugs crisis that is threatening to engulf parts of Wales.

    Although such a scheme could not go ahead without Home Office approval, critics last night were already labelling the idea absolutely barmy.

    Mr Brunstrom made his pledge after telling the annual Welsh Local Government Association conference that local authorities needed to do more to break the link between drugs and crime.

    He said North Wales Police were already spending some of their budget on supporting projects aimed at helping addicts kick the drug.

    Asked whether he would spend money on buying heroin to give to addicts so they would not have to steal to fund their habit, he said, "Yes".

    Mr Brunstrom, who earlier this week said he did not know what to tell his children about cannabis, said he had already told the Government he would like to pilot the heroin scheme in North Wales. He also said he would be happy to part-fund it with his own force's money.

    He promised that if it went ahead it would be tightly controlled, and said it was a measure of his commitment to deal with the drugs problem that he was ready to commit his own force's cash.

    "As and when the Government proceeds with this, and I don't know whether they will or not, I would wish to volunteer to pilot that sort of idea in North Wales," he said.

    "We would take the people who are totally and hopelessly addicted, particularly to heroin, who cannot or will not give up.

    "For a small number of people - we are talking a handful of people in Wales, hundreds at most - that is the only hope. They are way beyond redemption."

    At a time when police forces all over Britain are recording soaring levels of drug-related street crime and it is feared that dealers from England are planning to flood South and West Wales with cheap drugs, the idea is certain to be controversial.

    Conservative AM for North Wales Peter Rogers said the policy would simply flood the drugs market with prescribed heroin.

    He challenged Mr Brunstrom to show how such a scheme could be controlled, because many addicts stored up their supplies of the heroin

    substitute methadone and sold them on the black market.

    "The idea is absolutely barmy," said Mr Rogers.

    "People involved in drugs are ruthless and they would not only use it to feed their own habits but to sell it to others. I cannot believe the drugs would not reach the black market unless you had absolute control.

    "North Wales Police do not have the capabilities or manpower to police that."

    Mr Rogers said the problem would create huge pressures on those dispensing the drugs, because they would be open to intimidation and threats from addicts.

    "That is what happens in the inner cities now when methadone is dispensed at pharmacies. "I'm very dubious and I would like to see money targeted in other directions."

    A spokesman for the Home Office said that such a scheme was already being considered for addicts where all other interventions had failed.

Comments

  1. DrugPhreak
    You will only see this kind of common sense outside of Amerikkka.
  2. sunyata
    <DIV =h2>Top British Cops Call for Legal Heroin for Addicts, Liberal Democrats Join Growing Ecstasy Rescheduling Chorus </DIV>
    <DIV =h2></DIV>
    <DIV =p1>The tiny crack in Britain's prohibitionist drug policies created when Home Secretary David Blunkett announced in June that cannabis users would no longer be arrested come spring has now grown into a gaping fissure. DRCNet has reported repeatedly on the sudden rush to rationality in British drug policy, most recently on the legal battles surrounding the opening of a cannabis cafe in Manchester and the government's drug advisory panel's recommendation for more such cafes.

    In the latest signs of imminent drug war collapse in Britain, the country's police chiefs are now calling for the free, legal distribution of heroin to addicts. Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats, Britain's third political party, have joined a growing call to lessen the penalties for ecstasy.

    Regarding heroin, Sir David Phillips, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) told the Sunday Telegraph (London), "The system has failed. We have an out-of-control drug industry, and it is time to try a new approach."

    An unnamed police chief elaborated for the Telegraph. "If we provide free heroin to anyone who wants it, then at a stroke we eliminate a multi-billion-pound criminal conspiracy. No one would buy heroin if they can get it free."

    According to Phillips, the police chiefs will call for the National Health Service to dispense heroin in official premises staffed by police, social workers and medical personnel. Possession or use of the drug outside such premises would remain a criminal offense under the ACPO plan.

    The ACPO position, which represents a radical departure from the group's current posture, will be formalized next month. In the meantime, ACPO has been in consultations with police chiefs throughout England, Ireland and Wales, and Phillips is meeting this week with Andrew Hayman, Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the London Metropolitan Police, to finalize the announcement.

    In calling for far-reaching reforms, the police chiefs are building on the Cleveland Report, published two years ago by the Cleveland police in England's northeast. While the report's proposals were not adapted at that time, they will form the basis of the new ACPO position and will serve as a focus for the growing national debate on drug legalization.

    The report, written by Cleveland Chief Constable Barry Straw, criticized British drug policy as "ineffective" and "clearly based upon American experience."

    "There is overwhelming evidence to show that the prohibition-based policy in place in this country since 1971 has not been effective in controlling the use or availability of proscribed drugs," wrote Straw. "If there is indeed a war on drugs, it is not being won; drugs are demonstrably cheaper and more readily available than ever before. It seems that the laws of supply and demand are operating in textbook fashion. If a sufficiently large (and apparently growing) part of the population chooses to ignore the law for whatever reason, then that law becomes unenforceable. A modern Western democracy, based on policing by consent and the rule of law, may find itself powerless to prevent illegal activity -- in this case the importation and use of controlled drugs."

    After citing links between drug prohibition and both street crime and organized crime, Straw went on to list a number of policy conclusions:

    * Attempts to restrict availability of illegal drugs have failed so far, everywhere.

    * There is little or no evidence that they can ever work within acceptable means in a democratic society.

    * Demand for drugs seems still to be growing, locally and nationally. The market seems to be some way from saturation.

    * There is little evidence that conventional conviction and punishment has any effect on offending levels.

    * There is, however, growing evidence that treatment and rehabilitation programs can have a significant impact on drug misuse and offending.

    * There is some evidence that social attitudes can be changed over time, by design. The best example available to date is drunk- driving, but success has taken a generation to achieve.

    * If prohibition does not work, then either the consequences of this have to be accepted, or an alternative approach must be found.

    * The most obvious alternative approach is the legalization and subsequent regulation of some or all drugs.

    Prescribing heroin was standard British practice through the 1960s, and it was credited with keeping the number of addicts low. In 1971, there were 500 addicts, the Telegraph reported; now, after three decades of drug war, there are 500,000. In 1989, the National Health Service began an experimental program offering prescription heroin to addicts. Although the so-called Widnes or Liverpool experiment, run by psychiatrist Dr. John Marks, reported no drug-related deaths or new HIV infections in five years, and although local police reported a 93% drop in drug-related crime, the program's funding was pulled in 1995 after coverage on the TV newsmagazine 60 Minutes led to pressure from the US government on the British.

    While the police chiefs' plan has engendered criticism from the usual suspects, it has also drawn flak from unexpected quarters. Dame Ruth Runciman, who chaired a 1999 Police Foundation look at drug policy calling for the decriminalization of cannabis, said the plan had not been properly thought out.

    "I support some increase in prescribing heroin by family doctors, but I think a scheme of this kind would cause many problems," she told the Telegraph. "It would be difficult to decide on the spot whether someone should be prescribed heroin and what dose to give them. I am also far from convinced that there would be a large drop in crime," she said. "There is certainly some evidence linking drugs with crime, but there are also many other factors which cause crime, including social conditions."

    While police and drug reformers go around over just how heroin should be made available, British policy toward the popular club drug ecstasy is also under increasing pressure. Joining earlier calls from police officials and political figures, the Liberal Democratic Party had endorsed a party drug policy report calling for the reclassification downward of both ecstasy and cannabis. Ecstasy is currently a Class A drug, a classification reserved for the most dangerous drugs, such as heroin, and cannabis is a Class B drug. The Liberals will call for ecstasy to become Class B and cannabis to become Class C. (The Labor government has already proposed such a change in the cannabis classification.)

    "The current position is one that is completely out of control," said Baroness Walmsley, who headed the party panel. "The status quo is no longer an option," she told BBC News. Saying that classifying ecstasy as a very dangerous drug brought British drug policies into disrepute, Walmsley added that, "There is a common view that the majority of people experience no immediate ill-effects [from ecstasy]," she said. "There is clearly a danger that some will come to the conclusion that other Class A drugs like heroin present few dangers and will be tempted to try them also."

    Liberal Democrats will have the opportunity to go even further at their party convention in March. According to BBC, delegates will have the opportunity to vote on two competing proposals on imprisoning drug users. They will have the chance to vote on the Runciman Commission's recommendation that jailing of Class B and C drug possessors be ended. Or they can vote to end the jailing of all drug possessors, including Class A drugs, such as heroin and cocaine.

    source: http://www.drcnet.org/wol/215.html#ukdrugpolicy</DIV>
  3. Endlösung
    Im really happy with what British police officers have been doing to end the war on drugs, now if only the beurocrats would pull their heads from their ass,new groundcould actually be made. Its much the samewhere I used to live inVancouver, Canada. A large number of officerstherejust quit arresting drug offenders with the exclusion of dealers all together. If you wereever stopped there for drugs the most punishment you'd get is having to throw your dope into the sewer. The courts in Vancouver were much the same, they didnt want drug cases crowding the courts and if there was a drug case you were usually let off with no punisment other than possibly a short period of probabtion. If only the fucking MP'sand other big cheese SOB's would do something progressivealot of people all across my country might have a major boost in there quality of life.
  4. noeticbuzz
    I love this new seperation of drugs and criminal activity and how it is rightfully being treated as a social problem. Think of all the money wasted on the 'war'on drugs its fuckin disgusting, that is our money. There are so many better uses for that money and all you would need is a small fraction of it for drug related social problems.


    Btw, in Vancouver they just openend up a free heroin clinic.
  5. P!MPJU!C3
    Thats right. These are the kindah people Im talkin bout. Hell, even a dutch priest negotiated with heroine dealers to bring down their prices. He was trying to prevent junkies from stealing 4 their fix. This was 10 years a go.

    P!MPJU!C3
  6. DragonChaser
    Unfortunately the people in Britain, as a whole, are much more liberal
    than the people in the United States. In Britain they propose a plan to
    end the war on drugs, and it actually has a chance of coming to
    fruition. In the United States, a politician advances the idea of
    making just marijuana legal and he/she is ostrisized. I think most of
    the people in this country are far too conservative to ever allow
    legalization. You try to explain how the advantages of legalization far
    outweigh the disadvantages to the average person, and they shut down at
    the word "drugs". They think "drugs=bad" so "legalizing drugs=bad".
    It's just ignorance and plain stupidity.
  7. Muirner
    To me a non heroin user this sounds like it would be a great plan. True it's a lil unethical and i doubt to see this happing in the US with out the president addicted to H. but in theory it will work.


    This is where my support becomes iffy. The guy cannot even describe cannabis to his kids. how the hell is he gonna say "kids i'm now providing herion addicts herione, but dont touch the stuff because it's bad" pot is such a minor drug in the grand scheme of shit if you cant explain that to your kids then you shouldnt be incontrol of this.



    TIGHTLY CONTROLED! HA, just like methadone is tightly controled in the US. And yet people still obtain it on the streets... this will be no more tightly regulated then pot is or other illegal drugs. People will use it for the real reason, and people will find out how to fuck with the system.


    In theory i think that this is a great idea, but still you have to worry about people getting dope sick because the H is different then what they normally use, or the dealers getting mad because people are now getting H for "help" and cutting down on his profits. Also where are they going to get the H? a local dealer? who says it wont be cut to shit and back? Also if its grown by the government, wont it be like G13 (weed) in the US? very high grade? i think that sounds like people who are used to lower grade shit just nodding out for good.


    And how are they going to protect the surplus of herion? if you have the will you will have the way on how to break in and steal most likely lbs of herion. i just dont think that this guy has his shit in line enough to do it


    Muirner
  8. fletch








    thats the united states for ya, ingnorant and stupid
  9. sunyata
    [/QUOTE]


    TIGHTLY CONTROLED! HA, just like methadone is tightly controled in the US. And yet people still obtain it on the streets... this will be no more tightly regulated then pot is or other illegal drugs. People will use it for the real reason, and people will find out how to fuck with the system.


    In theory i think that this is a great idea, but still you have to worry about people getting dope sick because the H is different then what they normally use, or the dealers getting mad because people are now getting H for "help" and cutting down on his profits. Also where are they going to get the H? a local dealer? who says it wont be cut to shit and back? Also if its grown by the government, wont it be like G13 (weed) in the US? very high grade? i think that sounds like people who are used to lower grade shit just nodding out for good.


    And how are they going to protect the surplus of herion? if you have the will you will have the way on how to break in and steal most likely lbs of herion. i just dont think that this guy has his shit in line enough to do it


    Muirner


    [/QUOTE]


    Of course the heroin would be purer and thus stronger, but that just means you have to take smaller doses, and I don't see why pure heroin would make an addict more sick than the crap he gets on the street. A lot of addicts will still use this heroin to get good and properly stoned, but that's their business, right, it's not a problem for us unless we want to make it a problem.


    As for where to get the stuff, you can get it from India which is the largest producer of opium, and heroin can easily be synthesised from it, at low cost. Or we could make a deal with the afghans, help them out instead of bombing the crap out of them, or the iranians. Getting heroin will not be expensive and it certainly won't be difficult.


    And if you give heroin to addicts for free(or a minimal fee, production cost, no more), why would they steal it? And if a dealer steals it, who is he going to sell it to when his most steady customers(addicts) can get it for free somewhere else?


    Though I don't think heroin would be too available on the street when addicts get it for free, if it was still on the streets, how would that be different from today?


    There's no guarantee that this would solve all the problems, but there's just one way to find out: Try it! It should be obvious to most people that the current drug laws are not only not working, they are doing more damage than the drugs themselves.


    I strongly recommend that everyone reads Jonathan Ott's foreword to Pharmacotheon, it's called Proemium and can be found at erowid, I think.
  10. Muirner
    Isnt afganistan a major producer of herion also? I swore i read somthing about the DEA and going and cutting down poppy fields and trying to spred US type laws on drugs over there. Osama Bin Ladin is a big Harion producer (well his following) that is logicaly how to sponser themselfs.


    But yea i agree with you. Your right that the stronger herion would mean a smaller dose. and who knows maybe it could be like a methadone clinic where they wein u off.

    And if people get herion for free why would it get stolen. Ummm that's like asking why do pharmicists steal vicoden? or why do DR's write out fake scripts? It's just the way things are.

    I think heroin would still be all over the street. Because again i dont think they would have a neon sign that is pointing to a door "FREE HERION--&gt;" I'm sure that there would be some requirement to getting it.


    But all and all it sounds like a good plan to me.


    Muirner
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