COMMONS

Sir Richard Branson and former Swiss President give evidence

24 January 2012

The Home Affairs Committee takes evidence on drugs policy on Tuesday 24 January 2012.

Background

Sir Richard Branson and Ms Dreifuss are both commissioners in the Global Commission on Drugs Policy. The Global Commission published a report last year which declared that the war on drugs has failed and recommended a new approach to international drugs policy.

The second panel of witnesses are the UK Drug Policy Commission a body which provides an analysis of UK drug policy. They have recently published work on novel psychoactive substances (so-called legal highs) and the effect of austerity measures will have on UK drug policing.

Witnesses

Tuesday 24 January 2012, Wilson Room, Portcullis House

At 11 am

  • Richard Branson and Ruth Dreifuss, Global Commission on Drugs Policy

At 11.45 am

  • Dame Ruth Runicman (Chair) and Roger Howard (Chief Executive), UK Drugs Policy Commission

Comments from the Chair

Committee Chair Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP said:

"We will be talking to a number of people during what is sure to be a long-running inquiry.
I am delighted that Sir Richard Branson, one of the Commissioners for the Global Commission on Drug Policy, will be presenting evidence to the Committee alongside the former Swiss President Ruth Dreifuss.
I look forward to hearing the Commission's evidence on why the war on drugs has failed and why it is now time to decriminalise drugs and focus on providing treatment to drug users in a bid to bring an end to the destructive cycle of addiction.
We will also be hearing evidence from the UK Drug Policy Commission (UKDPC). Drugs can be a hugely controversial issue but we hope that this will be the start of a balanced, well-reasoned inquiry."

Further information

Image: PA

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