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NCJ Number: 201864 Find in a Library
Title: Drug Policy Developments Within the European Union: The Destabilizing Effects of Dutch and Swedish Drug Policies
Journal: British Journal of Criminology  Volume:43  Issue:3  Dated:Summer 2003  Pages:567-582
Author(s): Caroline Chatwin
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 16
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: In examining the course of drug control within the member countries of the European Union (EU), this study focused on the policies of the liberal Netherlands and the more repressive drug polices of Sweden.
Abstract: Before 1995, the national drug policy of the Netherlands, with its tendencies toward liberalization and tolerance, was distinctive when compared with the drug policies of other member states. Initially highly criticized within the EU, the policies adopted in the Netherlands began to make an impression on other member states as they looked for a more pragmatic solution to the problems of drug control. In 1995 when Sweden entered the EU, it brought a repressive approach to drug control that contributed to a backlash within the EU that led to a generally more punitive attitude toward drug use. There is currently a serious division within the EU between the tolerant policies favored by the Netherlands and the repressive policies pursued by Sweden. If the aims of cooperation and harmonization among member states' policies are to be achieved as a principal goal of the EU, then the EU must forge a middle road between prohibition and legalization. Although the aim of the EU to achieve a harmonization of approaches to the drug problem has not yet been achieved, the EU posture of not favoring or promoting one policy or set of policies over others has created a climate in which member states feel free to devise their own national drug policy within the parameters of legalization and prohibition, thus creating fertile ground for research that can help clarify the impacts of various drug policies. 40 references
Main Term(s): Drug Policy
Index Term(s): Drug law enforcement; European Union; International cooperation; International drug law enforcement; Netherlands; Sweden
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