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Home > English (en) > News > 2007 > SUPPORT FOR FREE HEROIN IN GERMANY
Published on 24 September 2007  by encod

SUPPORT FOR FREE HEROIN IN GERMANY

States press Merkel party to approve free heroin in Germany

September 21, 2007

Source: DPA



All the versions of this article: [English] [Nederlands]





State governments in Germany stepped up pressure Friday for free heroin
to be handed out to hopeless addicts, an approach which they said
weakens the drug culture.

Hundreds of addicts already receive up to three free doses a day of the
drug in seven German cities under what is officially a pilot scheme. The
states want health-insurers nationwide to pick up the tab in future.

The drug, also known as diamorphine, is made synthetically, rather than
from opium poppies.

A draft bill adopted in the Bundesrat upper house, backed by 13 of the
16 German states, will be referred to the Bundestag lower house.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s own party, the Christian Democratic Union
(CDU), opposes the burden being placed on insurers and instead proposes
more "pilot" projects where needed.

The heroin is given to addicts who have failed to break the habit using
a substitute, methadone. The conservative CDU says the main aim should
continue to be weaning them.

Birgit Schnieber-Jastram, the social-welfare minister in Hamburg,
contended that free issue in her state had reduced drug consumption
overall and enabled addicts to end contact with drug dealers.

A federal drugs official, Sabine Baetzing, said about 3,500 addicts in
Germany would benefit if heroin were available in every town.





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The European Coalition for Just and Effective Drug Policies, is a pan-European network of currently 160 NGO’s and individual experts involved in the drug issue on a daily base. We are the European section of an International Coalition, which consists of more than 400 NGOs from around the world that have adhered to a Manifesto for Just and Effective Drug Policies (established in 1998). Among our members are organisations of cannabis and other drug users, of health workers, researchers, grassroot activists as well as companies.


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