Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg, has vowed to scrap prison sentences for possession of drugs in the UK in their 2015 general election manifesto.
Speaking to the Sun Nick Clegg said, “At the moment, we are doing an utterly senseless thing – chucking the people who need treatment behind bars so they simply become even more vulnerable to the criminal gangs who exploited them in the first place.”
The Liberal Democrats 2015 manifesto will include a commitment to end the use of imprisonment for possession of drugs for personal use.“
Sales of cannabis in the US state of Colorado brought home more than $2.1 million (£1.2 million) in one month post-legalisation, the state figures revealed.
“We are never going to win a ‘war on drugs’. Illegal drugs still cause immense harm to the people who use them and to the communities they live in. We need a radically smarter approach if we are serious about tackling this problem.
“Liberal Democrats believe the first step to ending the war is to recognise that drug use is primarily a health problem. Addicts need treatment, not locking up. And it is a nonsense to waste scare resources on prison cells for cannabis users.
“That’s why we will commit to ensuring that nobody in future will go to prison where their only offence is possession of drugs for their own personal use.
“Instead these people should receive non-custodial sentences, and addicts should get the treatment they need to stop using drugs.
“In the longer term we will develop a more effective approach that frees up resources currently spent on prosecuting users, and reinvests that money in treatment and in the fight against organised crime.
“Liberal Democrats believe in a stronger economy and a fairer society. These liberal reforms will ensure that drug users get the help they need and that taxpayers don’t foot the bill for a system that doesn’t work.”
At the moment, more than 1,000 people a year in England and Wales are jailed for possession of drugs for their own personal use.