Report No. 155
Social Conditions and Protection against Drug Addiction The Conference;
Recalling that the preamble to the Single convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961, states that the parties to the Convention are "concerned with the health and welfare of mankind". and are "conscious of their duty to prevent and combat" the evil of drug addiction;
Considering that the discussions at the Conference have given evidence of the desire to take effective steps to prevent drug addiction;
Considering that, while drug addiction leads to personal degradation and social disruption, it happens very often that the deplorable social and economic conditions in which certain individuals and certain groups are living predispose them to drug addiction;
Recognizing that social factors have a certain and sometimes preponderant influence on the behaviour of individuals and groups;
Recommends that the parties:
1. Should bear in mind that drug addiction is often the result of an unwholesome social atmosphere in which those who are most exposed to the danger of drug abuse live;
2. Should do everything in their power to combat the spread of the illicit use of drugs; and
3. Should develop leisure and other activities conducive to the sound physical and psychological health of young people."
Apprehension about the sharp increase in drug problems during the late seventies led to formulation by the General Assembly in 1981 of an International Drug Abuse Control Strategy and a five year action programme (1982-86). It provided for a series of policy measures dealing with various aspects of drug control, traffic and treatment of addicts. The six-point strategy called for-
(i) improving the international drug control system through wider adherence to existing treaties;
(ii) co-ordinating efforts to ensure balance between supply and demand of drugs for legitimate use;
(iii) steps for eradication of illicit drug traffic including finding income producing alternatives for illicit drug producers;
(iv) intensifying efforts to detect and dismantle clandestine laboratories and trafficking organisations; and
(v) measures to prevent drug abuse and promote treatment, rehabilitation and social integration of drug abusers.
The programme of action set out specific activities for UN and member governments to achieve these objectives. The Commission on Narcotic Drugs was asked to monitor and co-ordinate their implementation.1
The 1984 Declaration on the Control of Drug Trafficking and Drug Abuse viewed drug trafficking and drug abuse as "an international criminal activity" a grave threat to the security and development of many countries and peoples which should be combated by all moral, legal and institutional means, at the national, regional and international levels. It identified the eradication of this evil as the collective responsibility of all States and affirmed the willingness of member States to intensify efforts and co-ordinate their strategies in that area.2
Further the Commission on Narcotics was called upon in 1984 to begin preparing a new International Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances to address areas that seemed to be inadequately covered by existing instruments.3
1. S.V. Joga Rao Drug Addiction Penal Policy, 34 JILI (1992), pp. 227, 228.
3. S.V. Joga Rao Drug Addiction Penal Policy, 34 JILI (1992), 227, 228.