The enforcing the laws that are on controlled drugs

The legal system which has been put into place to operate
how drug laws are enforced is very strict and severe consequences are there if
someone does chooses to violate. Similarly, the police help lot with these laws
being enforced by making sure that whoever isn’t agreeing with the laws of the
country, is dealt accordingly. This could result in a fine, prison time or
simply a certain amount of hours doing community service.

The police and the legal system relating to drug law
enforcement operate with the help of ‘The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971’. Because of
this act, all drugs are put into categories which are known to be ‘controlled’
substances. This categories are known as Class A, B and C, A being the most
harmful to the health and the society. Under the misuse act, anyone who is in
possession of a controlled substance , has the intentions to supply a
controlled substance or allows the use of the premises to manage drug taking
are all offences and would be charged according to what drug it was. Alongside
having an act put into place to keep people safe, crimestoppers has an
anonymous phone number to call if anyone has any information about drug
dealers. By doing so, they’re trying to put away anyone who has any associates
with drugs and making sure everyone else is safe.

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Another way policing and the legal systems operate in
practice within the drug law enforcement is by having enforcement agencies. For
example, one agency called ‘The Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA),
concentrates ‘on the so called “Mr Bigs”. These are people who make a lot of
money through drugs, major frauds and human trafficking. This agency is led
with law enforcement powers and responsibilities which are not harmful to
people and the communities b serious organised crimes. Another agency is very
well known and has been protecting the community for a very long time and that
is our very own police squads. The police help the government by enforcing the
laws that are on controlled drugs set by the misuse of drugs act. They also
tackle crimes related to drugs, such as possession of illegal substances. The
police are also in charge of doing stop and searches on anyone that the think
is guilty of possession of drugs and with an arrest warrant, they are also
allowed to make arrests. The prison squad is also part of the police squad
which is then responsible to make sure that no inmates smuggle drugs into the
prisons. They are able to succeed in this with the help of search techniques,
making the inmates take a drug test and also with the help of the most trustful
device, the CCTV (closed circuit television).

 There are many
organisations around recently that are trying to help people with their drug problems
and ways to avoid it and also try and avoid jail time. Other organisations have
help victims who are addicted to drugs and help them get over this addiction. Release
is an organisation that that is full of expertise on drugs and drug laws.  The team is set up in a way so that people
trust them so much as they provide non-judgemental and specialist advice
relating to drugs and the uses of it. They are only able to give an excellent
service to their clients because they have all been through the experience. By
this they are promoting evidence based drug policies which are from public
health rather than a criminal justice approach. Like every organisation,
release also believes that people who have fallen into the drug tap should be
treated with their human rights still intact.

Drug law organisations provide a lot of services for the
people who genuinely need help. A lawyer is there to help those who are
addicted to drugs, and also for those who are suffering with social welfare so
for example those who are on benefits, those who are homeless, and those with
debt issues. Working in an organisation, you find out much more than any media
outlet and any news stories. For example Niamh Eastwood from the organisation
Release mentioned how problematic drug use is amongst everyone and not just the
poor. However the rich are just better at hiding it. Even though this has to be
obvious because we see it all the time on celebrities overdosing on drugs.
However because poor people lack economically, it is seen much worse when they
spend all their money on drugs.

Getting involved with drugs can affect a person severely,
mentally, emotionally and physically. This is why organisations provide people
with counselling services. These sessions are seen as very beneficial to the
individuals themselves, as well as their families. The counselling sessions
could be about the victims’ personal life, where they talk about their emotions
ad thoughts. There is also relationship counselling which is mainly aimed at
families to help them understand each other and their emotions and thoughts.
Lastly, there is a counselling session for groups who have all experienced or
been through the same problems or have a similar history. This way they can go
to a confidential area and just speak about their thoughts and emotions without
having the fear of being judged since everyone has been in that very similar
situation. Having group sessions is an excellent way of trying to help the
victims without adding too much pressure on them. For example someone could be
very scared to open up to someone with higher authority, scared to be judged,
but because with the group counselling, everyone has been on the same exact
boat and has been through the same exact situation which makes them very
comfortable of their surrounding people.

Even though the policing and the legal systems relating to
drug law enforcements operate very strictly, they are still very inconsistent.
This is because some very harmful substances are still legal and freely
available and drugs which do not cause much harm to the body or the environment
are illegal. For example, the founder of the organisation ‘Release’, Niamh
Eastwood, stated how alcohol is actually far more dangerous and harmful than
heroin, yet alcohol is legal and heroin isn’t. Alcohol doesn’t cause much harm
to the body but when an individual is intoxicated, he is not aware of his
surrounding and may be harmful to the environment and society. However, heroin
is illegal because people assume that is it very dangerous and it can mess with
your internal organs. Whereas, what they don’t know is that heroin can only
harm the internal organs if it is injected and it gets into the bloodstream.
This is very dangerous, but if the drug is smoked then the dangers of it are
decreased significantly. However, there is no actual way alcohol can reduce its
dangers unless there is a limit on how much an individual can drink.

Another thing that Eastwood mentioned is how the punishments
for crack cocaine and cocaine is very different. Even though these two drugs do
not have much difference, because of the fact that crack cocaine allows you to
get high quicker, it is seen as more dangerous. As well as that, if someone is
caught with crack cocaine, the punishment they will get would be 10 times more
than what they would get if they were only caught with cocaine. The punishments
for cocaine are severe though because it is so easy to get cocaine that is
mixed with other chemicals or drugs that could be dangerous for someone. Also
if the cocaine is 100% pure, it could harm the user, however, if the government
makes cocaine legal, it would have the resources and the power to make this
drug safe. By doing this, the risk of health and crime would be reduced
drastically.

Sir Ian Gilmore, a president of the Royal college of
physicians who has now stepped down from his post, mentioned back in 2010 that
decriminalising drug use could radically and significantly reduce the crime
rate as well as improve health rates. This is because he mentioned how locking
victims in prisons because of their misuse of drugs would not improve anything
and those addicted will still remain addicts. He mentions how the laws that are
on the misuse of drugs should be regulated and the supplies should also be
controlled. He came to this view after treating patients who were contaminated
by dirty needles ad drugs which had been contaminated. His view on regulating
drugs and making sure the supplies and resources are clean would make health
improve significantly. Sir Ian stated, “Every
day in our hospital wards we see drug addicts with infections from dirty
needles, we see heroin addicts with complications from contaminated drugs.”
However, the government did not think this was the correct approach and decided
to still keep these drugs illegal and made no change to the current drug
laws. 

In conclusion
there are many ways in which the police and the legal system operate in
practise in relation to the drug law enforcement. This could be from the help
of many different organisations and agencies. Organisations being there to help
out the criminals sort their life out and bring it back on track and providing
them with a lawyer to give them legal advices, such as ‘Release’. Agencies
provide more help and support the community by making sure everyone else is
safe and locking up the criminals. These two have a very different approach on
handling things but they have the same purpose and that is to keep everyone
safe. Even though the agency to do with the police squad also has the purpose
of trying to keep everyone safe, as Niamh Eastwood mentioned how they have been
researching on how there racial inequality is amongst the police and drugs. For
example a black person is 6 times more likely to be stopped and searched than a
white person even though from research it has been proven that black people use
drugs significantly less than the white population. Another thing that was
mentioned was how if the black person des get arrested because of drugs, he
will be treated far more worse and harshly than a white person. Lastly, the
police tend to do more stop and searches in less deprived areas and end up
making more arrests, however the rich use as many drugs as the poor, but they
just have the resources to hide it.