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Communication with the Council of Europe/Pompidou Group

Interesting things are happening at the European Court/COE, and we would like to share our correspondence with the Private Office of the Secretary General and the Pompidou Group. 


When it comes to the latter, we have already received a positive response: its Precidency will now share our perspectives with individual countries and it will be exciting to see how they respond to the call of First principles. When it comes to the former, our communication has been forwarded to the Parliamentary Assembly, whose Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights is currently preparing a political report called "Drug Policy and Human Rights in Europe: A Baseline Study".

As noted by this resolution, the Pompidou Group and the signatories recognize that it is “not possible at present to give an authoritative and comprehensive view on the human rights dimension of drug policy.” As such, the rights of millions of people remain deeply contested and this coming report will prepare the ground for a better understanding of how the principles of human rights law apply to drug policy.


When it comes to this, our report Human Rising offers what has been missing so far: a baseline overview of the human rights situation in relation to drug policy. As you can see from our response to the COE Introductory Memorandum, we have contacted the people and offices involved and it will be interesting to see if COE will stand by its current practice of pushing the idea of human rights, while denying drug law violators basic human rights protection, or if they will face the music and sing to a new tune--one that begins with First principles and ensures the recalibration of law.

We also await a response from the Commissioner of Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights. In 2012, the latter denied more than 40 million European drug law violators an effective remedy, and as more and more constitutional courts are invalidating the drug laws, we ask the Court to reverse its decision. 

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