Should drug possession be considered a crime?

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Nick Clegg has said that over 1,000 people annually are jailed at a cost of £5 million to the tax payer because they were caught for possession of drugs for their own personal use.

With the UK’s prison population continuing to grow and 84,865 people in jail currently the Liberal Democrats election manifesto is to end custodial sentences for people carry drugs for their own personal use. Instead of going to prison they would receive a non-custodial sentence and medical help.

What do you think about this?  Is this black and white, or will it open up a whole new can of worms?

Do you agree with Nick Clegg that drug users should not receive prison sentences?

1573 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

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SovereignInventory
6th Mar 2015
0
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The main problem is that could anyone really see ANY Govt of any persuasion take the responsibility of having a state run drugs policy and provision of actual drugs. They would need somebody in charge with not only experience of drugs but also real life. Look at the (lack of) success they have had with immigration, education, NHS, etc.... Could anyone see someone like Nick Clegg as a drug 'tsar'?
nagonthenet
2nd Mar 2015
3
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Decriminalise it and the bottom would drop right out of the market - no dealers, no crime, less prostitution. BUT if you want to take drugs and kill yourself slowly then do so without help from the state.
Archiebald
4th Mar 2015
0
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I agree to decriminalise drugs but the state then needs to provide them. If it does so it can provide safe drugs and keep an eye on users to make sure they are safe
andbrown01
28th Feb 2015
2
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jugsy
26th Feb 2015
2
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I think drugs should be legalised.
We would get it out in the open and have a chance to help people who are addicted.
Having it run by criminals makes it more attractive to some people who them become addicts.
Not everyone becomes addicts and some use it for recreation and never become addicts.
It is no differents to drinking alcohol which is a drug and very addictive to some people.
The police would have more time to catch proper criminals.
countrylass
14th Feb 2015
2
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Yes they need help, but what if they keep on re-offending, stealing to fund their habit? There's probably more drugs in prison than anywhere. It's the big drug pushers and barons who need punishing, and these people caught in foreign countries trying to smuggle drugs here, should be left to rot in their jails.
roverT33
10th Feb 2015
2
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I do not consider cannabis to be an addictive drug. I smoked it for many years off and on. It's not a physical addiction. If anybody says they are I tell them it's a mental addiction and get it right as they give out the wrong Impression. I don't smoke it any more, and have not done for years. But I have lost a lot of friends to heroin, 5 have died or committed suicide on it. There is only one who I know who is still on it. I have offered to help him if he needs it but he always declines. He doesn't steal or rob anybody. He can't go to his family as he doesn't want his habit known to them. He's been on it now for at least 25 years. You can't force this man to do anything. In his younger days he was a Hells Angel and the second in command of his chapter. There were lot of others in this town who were users but have had treatment and are now clean.
MrFred
30th Jan 2015
3
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I agree with Nick on this one. I don't think people caught in possession should be punished - they should be helped to give up their addiction. Jailing them does not help anyone, and only costs us money.

I think dealers should be punished heavily, and users should only receive jail sentences for any crimes committed to support their habit. If the person in possession is supporting their own habit and has committed no other crimes, such as public nuisance infringements, violent crime or theft - they are harming themselves only, and in this case we should show compassion.

If a heroin addict supports their habit through theft, then jail them for theft and force rehabilitation while they serve their sentence. If they are self supporting and committing no other crimes, force rehabilitation as an out patient.

You have to ask yourself what led them to addiction in the first place - there is usually a sad back story. I say help, not incarcerate.
Baxi
30th Jan 2015
3
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I agree with Nick Clegg. Community service would be far more appropriate - perhaps like in the UK where they wear orange jump suits so that people are aware that community service is in progress?
Westminster
29th Jan 2015
5
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Prisoners should be made to carry out physical work, highway maintenance, etc. Take their minds off drugs, pay them for the work, and save most of it for their release. Stop the current situation where prisoners just sit around most of the day fermenting mischief.
Dr Barrie
6th Feb 2015
2
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In Florida, prisoners can be seen in a supervised situation, cleaning up rubbish from roadsides, cutting grass verges and other 'Social type Work' to earn their keep.
Why don't they do it in Britain ?....Oh! l forgot.....Human Rights l suppose.
Archiebald
9th Feb 2015
1
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Great idea they should do that in the UK as well...there is enough rubbish about to keep them busy!!
Wilf
29th Jan 2015
3
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Wilf
29th Jan 2015
1
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Seems to me from what I have read that the prisons are full of drugs so if the drug addict is jailed he then goes into an environment filled with drugs. How can that make sense? Don't sent addicts to prison try and cure them or give them free drugs so they don't go out and commit crime to get money for drugs
Peter
29th Jan 2015
3
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I agree Wilf - if you go to prison a light drugs user it's highly likely you'll come out an addict!! A lighter hand is required here and it's not often I agree with Nick!
little owl
29th Jan 2015
4
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I think some prisons should have provision to provide the means to wean prisoners off drugs rather than them escape punishment for bad crimes with such a week excuse. Many people are prescription drug addicts but it doesn't mean they should be allowed to do what they want.
Archiebald
29th Jan 2015
4
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The prisons are full..lets put criminals in there not people who are using drugs...they should be "weaned" off them not jailed

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