Click below to learn more about the CND, current drug policy discussions and ways you can engage.
The Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) is one of the functional commissions of the United Nations’ Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), and is thecentral drug policy-making body within the United Nations System.
The CND also has important mandates under the three international drug control conventions, alongside the three other treaty-mandated bodies: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (on behalf of Secretary-General), World Health Organization, and International Narcotics Control Board.
The 2024 Midterm Review, to be held 14-15 March 2024, will serve to assess progress made in the implementation of all international drug policy commitments as set forth in the 2019 Ministerial Declaration.
Preceding the 2024 midterm review was a comprehensive stock-taking of all 11 challenges related to the world drug problem identified in the Ministerial Declaration, which took place during the thematic discussions held on 23-25 October and 4-6 December 2023. This comprehensive stock-taking complements the thematic discussions held by the Commission since 2019. An end-of-cycle review of the implementation of all international drug policy commitments is planned for 2029.
In November 2018, the UN System Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB), the main instrument for coordination between 31 UN agencies, adopted the first ever “United Nations System Common Position supporting the implementation of the international drug control policy through effective inter-agency collaboration”, to raise awareness of the multifaceted nature of the world drug problem and inspire the planning and implementation of United Nations activities, including joint inter-agency activities, stepping up efforts to ensure that no one is left behind.
The 67th Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) and the Midterm Review is taking place at a moment when a renewed push for greater convergence between human rights and drug policy commitments is happening across the United Nations system.
In 2023, the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva adopted one of the most ambitious and progressive resolutions on drug policy to date, which paved the way for the preparation of a report on human rights challenges in drug policy presented by the High Commissioner – a truly ground-breaking document that presents a clear blueprint for global reform.
Enhancing global efforts includes establishing the drug control policy firmly within the global health agenda, to adequately address the impact of drug policies on public health. Despite the evidence in favor of following a health and human rights-based approach to drugs, punitive responses to drugs are still prioritized all over the world and public health policies are still not discussed together with policies on drug control.
Political leaders across the world are calling for other options to be debated, explored and implemented using the best possible evidence and analysis. This should include assessing the impacts of current drug control policies in all their complexity and exploring cost-effective and rights-based health services and harm reduction interventions, and invest in programs that prioritize health, community and justice.
Reaffirming the global community´s renewed and unwavering commitment to address the world drug situation, a voluntary “Pledge4Action” initiative is proposed by the Chair of the Commission at its sixty-seventh session, to mobilize Member States’ commitment toward concrete, impactful actions along the key challenges outlined in the 2019 Ministerial Declaration including the cross-cutting challenge on data collection.
Pledges are the bridges that connect commitment to concrete action. They are a public declaration of intent, signifying a Member State’s readiness to invest efforts, expertise, and resources into making a difference. Pledges have the potential to result in tangible projects and programs designed to address specific challenges. By committing to a pledge, Member States move from policy articulation to policy implementation, turning words into deeds.
Member States are invited to make actionable pledges across three thematic areas:
– National, Regional, or Global Initiatives: Member States are invited to pledge their commitment to initiate or support projects and programs that contribute to the implementation of specific commitments related to the challenges.
– Collaboration with Stakeholders: Pledges may entail cooperative efforts to engage partners and stakeholders in joint initiatives to facilitate holistic responses to the challenges.
– Budget Allocations and Financial Contributions: Member States are encouraged to increase budget allocations for the implementation of drug policy programmes or pledge financial support to partners, including the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), with a view to enable the realization of specific projects addressing the challenges.