The Mayor of London, has vowed to establish a new London Drugs Commission if re-elected at the Mayoral elections on 6 May.
Sadiq Khan has called for fresh ideas to tackle violent and drug-related crime, improve the public’s health and help people to recover from addiction. The proposed commission will examine the latest evidence on the harms of drugs, the best methods of prevention and how to tackle the root causes of crime. It will be comprised of independent experts from criminal justice, public health, politics, community relations and academia.
He said, “The illegal drugs trade causes huge damage to our society - driving serious and violent crime, damaging people’s health and criminalising too many young people. That’s why, if I’m re-elected, I will establish a new London Drugs Commission comprised of independent experts to examine the latest evidence from around the world.
“The commission will make recommendations focusing on the most effective laws to tackle crime, protect Londoners’ health and reduce the huge damage that illegal drugs, including cannabis, cause to our communities and society.”
The Commission will pull together the latest evidence on the effectiveness of UK drugs laws, police enforcement and support services for those with addictions. The commissioners will examine the latest evidence from across the globe in the round, and report to the Mayor with policy recommendations for City Hall, the Government, the police, the criminal justice system and health and addiction support services. The recommendations will focus on the most effective ways to ensure violent and drug-related crimes, and the harm cannabis can cause to individuals, communities and addicts, is tackled. It will build on research that has been commissioned to assess how effective cannabis enforcement is at tackling violence in London as part of Sadiq’s action plan to improve trust and confidence in Met Police.
The illegal drugs trade in the UK is estimated to cost society £19 billion per year. 41,900 people across England and Wales were charged with drugs-related offences last year.