Portugal Drug Plan 
In 2001, Portugal decriminalized the personal possession of all drugs as part of a wider re-orientation of policy towards a health-led approach. Possessing drugs for personal use is instead treated as an administrative offence, meaning it is no longer punishable by imprisonment and does not result in a criminal record and associated stigma. Drugs are, however, still confiscated and possession may result in administrative penalties such as fines or community service.

Importantly, the decriminalization of personal possession is only one part of broader health-centered drug policy reforms that involve an increased focus on harm reduction and treatment provision. By ‘accepting the reality of drug use rather than eternally hoping that it will disappear as a result of repressive legislation’, Portuguese reform allows drugs to be treated as a health, rather than criminal justice, issue. In the first five years after the reforms, drug deaths dropped dramatically. MORE to come.