Journal article

'We realised we needed a new approach': Government and law enforcement perspectives on the implementation and future of the drug decriminalisation policy in vietnam.

Hai Thanh Luong, Luc Trong Hoang, Toan Quang Le, Tuan Anh Hoang, Mai Thanh Vu, Huyen Quang Tran, Nicholas Thomson

International Journal of Drug Policy | Published : 2021


In 2009, Vietnam officially decriminalised drug use through amendments to the criminal law. The amendments outlined explicitly that illicit drug use would be seen as an administrative violation, but not a criminal offence. This legal transition has not been without implementation challenges, and police particularly have struggled to find a balance between drug law enforcement and decriminalisation. Despite being a health-orientated drug policy amendment, in practice it allows police to send suspected drug users to compulsory treatment centres without judicial oversight and people who use drugs continue to face challenges in their interface with law enforcement which can negatively impact acc..

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