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Article
Publication date: 4 October 2021

Chris Ó. Rálaigh and Sarah Morton

International policy approaches to cannabis production and use are changing rapidly, and within the Irish context, alternatives to prohibition are being considered. This…

Abstract

Purpose

International policy approaches to cannabis production and use are changing rapidly, and within the Irish context, alternatives to prohibition are being considered. This study aims to explore policymaker’s attitudes towards the decriminalisation and legal regulation of cannabis for recreational use in the midst of an unfolding policy process, examining the degree which a “policy window” might be open for the implementation of cannabis policy change.

Design/methodology/approach

Semi-structured interviews were held with eight key informants within the policy field in Dublin, Ireland. Kingdon’s (2014) Multiple Streams framework was used to consider whether the problems, policy and political streams were aligning to support progressive policy change.

Findings

Irish policymakers indicated broad support for the decriminalisation of cannabis. The legal regulation of cannabis received more qualified support. Existing policy was heavily criticised with criminalisation identified as a clear failure. Of particular interest was the willingness of policymakers to offer opinions which contrasted with the policy positions of their organisations. While a policy window did open – and close – subsequent governmental commitments to examine the issue of drugs policy in a more deliberative process in the near future highlight the incremental nature of policy change.

Originality/value

This study provides unique insight into the opinions of policymakers in the midst of a prolonged period of policy evolution. A latent aspiration for historical policy change was situated within the realpolitik of more traditional approaches to policy development, demonstrating that the alignment of Kingdon’s (2014) problem, policy and political streams are essential for change in cannabis policy.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Book part
Publication date: 23 September 2005

Rosalie L. Pacula, Robert MacCoun, Peter Reuter, Jamie Chriqui, Beau Kilmer, Katherine Harris, Letizia Paoli and Carsten Schäfer

Although frequently discussed as a singular policy, there is tremendous variation in the laws and regulations surrounding so-called decriminalization policies adopted by…

Abstract

Although frequently discussed as a singular policy, there is tremendous variation in the laws and regulations surrounding so-called decriminalization policies adopted by Western countries, with many jurisdictions adopting depenalization policies rather than policies that actually change the criminal status of cannabis possession offences. This paper provides a discussion of the liberalization policies being adopted in Western countries, highlighting distinct elements about particular policies that are important for proper analysis and interpretation of the policies. It then discusses some of the environmental factors that also shape these policies, and hence influence their potential impact, using data from the U.S.A. as a particular example. The results clearly show that researchers should be careful conducting intra- or international comparisons of policies because important aspects of these policies are frequently ignored.

Details

Substance Use: Individual Behaviour, Social Interactions, Markets and Politics
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-361-7

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Article
Publication date: 29 April 2021

Michiel Baas

Taking as a point of departure the edited collection Yaraana (1999), ostensibly the first mainstream publication on gay writing from India, the purpose of this article is…

Abstract

Purpose

Taking as a point of departure the edited collection Yaraana (1999), ostensibly the first mainstream publication on gay writing from India, the purpose of this article is to trace the way Indian authors have dealt with the growing visibility of nonnormative sexualities. It suggests that from the start this debate has centered on a dyad between local and culturally specific sexual identities vs its globalized opposite, which is held to threaten regionally specific expressions. The continuing struggle for recognition and equality is revealing for a growing divide between those whose sexuality can rely on growing representation in Indian popular media, and those who feel increasingly marginalized.

Design/methodology/approach

This article revisits important texts that were published and publicly accessible in India from 1999 onwards. All the text considered and discussed were accessible outside academic networks and thus, available in mainstream bookstores, produced by Indian authors or long-term residents and available in English. Considering the vast language diversity of India as well as the complexity of gaining access to locally published materials, the analysis does not include texts that are only available in a vernacular language. Besides this, the article benefits from the direct input of key activists and scholars from India working on this topic.

Findings

Even if homosexuality has now been decriminalized in India, what emerges from the writing is a concern that globally hegemonic expressions of alternate sexualities might impact, homogenize and eventually eradicate locally specific expressions. Considering socioeconomic equality in India, this raises serious questions about those whose precarious positions may see them further marginalized because of this.

Originality/value

While there have been various overviews and analyses of the fight for decriminalization of homosexuality in India, so far there has not been an analysis how this benefited from a growing awareness and discussion in popularly accessible texts. This analysis also raises concerns that the fight for decriminalization might have negative consequences for those in marginalized positions.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 19 November 2020

Anastacia Ryan

This chapter explores sex work and compares legal regimes in two case study contexts of Scotland and New Zealand. It highlights parallels in policy norms and approaches…

Abstract

This chapter explores sex work and compares legal regimes in two case study contexts of Scotland and New Zealand. It highlights parallels in policy norms and approaches towards women in sex work and women who use drugs, including stigmatisation and punishment of ‘deviant’ women or alternatively, approaches that seek to ‘rescue’ women and which frames them as victims. Different policy approaches and regulatory regimes are discussed but the chapter argues that without attention to social justice issues, the structural drivers of women’s engagement in sex work will continue to be overlooked. Participation in policy processes by those with lived experience is emphasised, both to ensure better understanding of sex work by policymakers, and also in recognition of the citizenship, voice and agency of sex workers.

Details

The Impact of Global Drug Policy on Women: Shifting the Needle
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-885-0

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Expert briefing
Publication date: 22 January 2021

The regulation does not affect existing provisions regarding recreational use, which remains largely banned. However, a bill approved by the Senate on November 19 would…

Details

DOI: 10.1108/OXAN-DB258974

ISSN: 2633-304X

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Geographic
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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2016

Liz Austen

In 2013, the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Durham, Ron Hogg, initiated a debate around the future of British drug policy. In June 2015, the Derbyshire PCC, Alan…

Abstract

Purpose

In 2013, the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Durham, Ron Hogg, initiated a debate around the future of British drug policy. In June 2015, the Derbyshire PCC, Alan Charles, opened a similar debate with representatives from policing, third party support agencies, national advocates and academics to discuss the possibilities for change. This short paper presents the views and actions of senior figures in the police service and discusses motivations for pursuing change. The purpose of this paper is to introduce police and crime commissioners as “drug policy actors” (Seddon, 2011) and to highlight key areas for further academic enquiry.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is based on press releases and media accounts of the recent activity of the PCCs in relation to national drug policy. This paper provides an academic viewpoint on recent events, supported by theoretical literature critiquing drug policy and contemporary policing.

Findings

This viewpoint articulates that motivations for pursuing a change in drug policy are based on both economic and ideological agendas of some PCCs. Irrespective of the motivation, pressure from PCCs and renowned Chief Constables may be more effective in initiating change than high-profile national campaigns and political debates.

Originality/value

This paper is the first of its kind to discuss the relationship between PCCs/local constabularies and drug policy reform. It provides a foundation for future research which could investigate views on alternatives to prohibition, specifically within the wider police force.

Details

Safer Communities, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-8043

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Book part
Publication date: 15 October 2018

Danilo Ballotta and Brendan Hughes

In Europe, the Netherlands, Portugal and the Czech Republic are the countries increasingly portrayed as having the most ‘progressive’, ‘liberal’, or even ‘radical’ drugs…

Abstract

In Europe, the Netherlands, Portugal and the Czech Republic are the countries increasingly portrayed as having the most ‘progressive’, ‘liberal’, or even ‘radical’ drugs policies in Europe. In a post-United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) 2016 period and with the 2019 UN target date approaching, the EU and these countries within are bound to play a key role in the definition of an international drug policy for the next decade. This chapter analyses how the perceptions of these countries match against the drugs legislations and how they fit into the overall EU drug policy approach.

Details

Collapse of the Global Order on Drugs: From UNGASS 2016 to Review 2019
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-488-6

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 30 November 2012

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Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Article
Publication date: 30 March 2020

Rachel Kappler and Arduizur Carli Richie-Zavaleta

Human trafficking (HT) is a local, national and international problem with a range of human rights, public health and policy implications. Victims of HT face atrocious…

Abstract

Purpose

Human trafficking (HT) is a local, national and international problem with a range of human rights, public health and policy implications. Victims of HT face atrocious abuses that negatively impact their health outcomes. When a state lacks protective laws, such as Safe Harbor laws, victims of HT tend to be seen as criminals. This paper aims to highlight the legal present gaps within Missouri’s anti-trafficking legislation and delineates recommendations for the legal protection of victims of HT and betterment of services needed for their reintegration and healing.

Design/methodology/approach

This case-study is based on a policy analysis of current Missouri’s HT laws. This analysis was conducted through examining current rankings systems created by nationally and internationally recognized non-governmental organizations as well as governmental reports. Additionally, other state’s best practice and law passage of Safe Harbor legislations were examined. The recommendations were based on human rights and public health frameworks.

Findings

Missouri is a state that has yet to upgrade its laws lately to reflect Safe Harbor laws. Constant upgrades and evaluations of current efforts are necessary to protect and address HT at the state and local levels. Public health and human rights principles can assist in the upgrading of current laws as well as other states’ best-practice and integration of protective legislation and diversion programs to both youth and adult victims of HT.

Research limitations/implications

Laws are continually being updated at the state level; therefore, there might be some upgrades that have taken place after the analysis of this case study was conducted. Also, the findings and recommendations of this case study are limited to countries that are similar to the USA in terms of the state-level autonomy to pass laws independently from federal law.

Practical implications

If Safe Harbor laws are well designed, they have greater potential to protect, support and assist victims of HT in their process from victimization into survivorship as well as to paving the way for societal reintegration. The creation and enforcement of Safe Harbor laws is a way to ensure the decriminalization process. Additionally, this legal protection also ensures that the universal human rights of victims are protected. Consequently, these legal processes and updates could assist in creating healthier communities in the long run in the USA and around the world.

Social implications

From a public health and human rights perspectives, communities in the USA and around the world cannot provide complete protection to victims of HT until their anti-trafficking laws reflect Safe Harbor laws.

Originality/value

This case study, to the best of the authors’ knowledge, is a unique analysis that dismantles the discrepancies of Missouri’s current HT laws. This work is valuable to those who create policies at the state level and advocate for the protection of victims and anti-trafficking efforts.

Details

International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4902

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Book part
Publication date: 2 July 2020

Laura Connelly and Teela Sanders

In this chapter, the authors reflect on how the criminological agenda can move towards disrupting the boundaries that exist between the academe and sex work activism. The…

Abstract

In this chapter, the authors reflect on how the criminological agenda can move towards disrupting the boundaries that exist between the academe and sex work activism. The authors do so as academics who strive to affect social change outside of the academe, but do not attempt to offer a prescriptive ‘how to guide’. Indeed, they are themselves still grappling with the challenges of, and learning to be better at, ‘academic-activism’. The chapter begins by shining light on the activist underpinnings of the sex workers’ rights movement, before outlining some of the key scholarship in sex work studies, drawing particular attention to that which seeks to bring about social change. It then explores the utility of participatory action research (PAR) to sex work studies and reflects on how a PAR-inspired approach was used in the Beyond the Gaze research project. Here, the authors cast a critically reflexive eye over the unique realities, including the challenges, of integrating sex worker ‘peer researchers’ within the research team. The chapter concludes by considering how the criminological agenda must adapt if we truly want to bring truly want to bring about positive social change for sex workers, as well as how the current system of Higher Education ultimately stymies ‘academic-activist’ approaches to research.

Details

The Emerald Handbook of Feminism, Criminology and Social Change
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-956-4

Keywords

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