Important UN organization wants marijuana to be decriminalized

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More international support is coming for legalized marijuana

Another United Nations (UN) organization is getting behind marijuana. The Un Chief Executives Board (CEB) is endorsing the decriminalization of marijuana possession and has issued a policy statement to show its support. While it is publicly acknowledging its support by issuing the policy statement, the CEB is still hesitant about publicizing it to a great extent and the news only broke this week, even though the statement was issued in January.

The CEB represents 31 UN agencies, making it one of the largest representative groups in the organization. Among those it represents is the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the CEB has asserted, in its policy statement, that the member states need to pursue drug policies based on science and which are health-oriented. It adds that they should also consider decriminalization.

The fact that the CEB would show support for decriminalization should be seen as a very big deal. It indicates a shift in the way the UN views marijuana and, given the UNODC’s record of supporting punitive drug enforcement convictions, is indicative of an entirely different mindset in the organization. The policy statement was also released ahead of an upcoming UN meeting that will discuss, among other things, international drug policies.

The CEB isn’t the first international body to change its mind on marijuana. The World Health Organization (WHO) has spoken out several times lately in support of decriminalization and, between the UN and the WHO support, marijuana is approaching the point of being globally accepted, instead of shunned.