On January 15th, 2018 Families for Addiction Recovery made a Submission to the Department of Justice, Canada regarding the transformation of the criminal justice system. Our main recommendations were:
- Adopt a public health approach to drugs and drug policy and decriminalize the possession of all drugs for personal use.
- Control and regulate the distribution of currently illegal drugs according to their respective risks and harms as part of an evidence-based, public-health approach to drugs and drug policy.
- Collaborate with the Ministries of Health at the federal and provincial/territorial levels to ensure those who commit crimes due to untreated addiction and/or other mental health conditions are not criminalized but receive the treatment that they need and deserve.
- Ensure that those who are incarcerated or temporarily detained and have addiction and/or other mental health conditions have timely access to evidence based treatment, including medication assisted treatment (MAT), for these conditions while incarcerated or detained.