Drug De-Criminalisation Discussion Picks Up - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Drug De-Criminalisation Discussion Picks Up

Published February 20, 2014

A conservative MP and members of the Pirate Party support the de-criminalisation of drugs in Iceland.

Vísir reports that Independence Party MP Brynjar Níelsson – long a supporter of drug de-criminalisation – has not changed his position on the matter.

“If we look at drug abuse as a health problem,” he told reporters, “I don’t think prison sentences will fix that problem; rather, it will make it worse. It doesn’t have the user’s interests in mind, it is damaging to families, and it is damaging to society as a whole.”

Using a comparison to alcohol, Brynjar points out that “when liquor was banned, it only acted as fuel for criminal activities.” He did, though, say that caution needed to be exercised, again citing alcohol – that there are laws on alcohol use, even if the substance is completely legal.

The Pirate Party took much the same position, Vísir reports, with MP Birgitta Jónsdóttir addressing parliament on the matter.

“We Pirates intend to submit a policy tomorrow on the matter, where we approach the matter holistically,” she said. “We have to find a holistic policy regarding addiction.”

As reported, Minister of Health Kristján Þór Júlíusson recently publicly expressed the desire to see a policy change, saying in part, “I am very supportive of the opinion that we ought to try to de-criminalise [drug] use in this matter.”


Show Me More!