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Treatment versus Punishment for Drug Addiction

Lessons from Austria, Poland, and Spain

Treatment versus Punishment for Drug Addiction by Richard Soyer
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​​This brief summarizes the results of a two-year, international research project covering drug addiction treatment versus punishment in Austria, Poland, and Spain. It features:

-An analysis of the national drug-related legislation and its application in these countries

- An evaluation of drug laws and policies by both the law enforcement and drug treatment practitioners

-An evaluation of drug-addicted offenders undergoing drug treatment versus punishment and their outcomes

The basic findings of the project can be summarized as follows: drug addiction and drug-related criminal behavior should be treated as a psychiatric disorder and a chronic disease. The study supports the application of a treatment-oriented approach to drug-related delinquency. As this brief demonstrates, one challenge to an adequate treatment of drug addicted offenders is a lack of cooperation between the judicial and the medical sector, and an inconsistent application of policies. By comparing the legislation and application of drug laws in these three European countries, the authors provide insights with implications for other national legal systems.  

This brief will be of interest to researchers and policy-makers working with drug involved individuals, from criminology and criminal justice, public health, public policy and international comparative law. 

Springer International Publishing; August 2015
111 pages; ISBN 9783319188249
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Title: Treatment versus Punishment for Drug Addiction
Author: Richard Soyer; Stefan Schumann
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