National Drug Strategy (NDS)

National Drug Strategy (NDS)

For the purpose of achieving the specific objective, expected results and outputs, the component understands the following measures to be vital:

         A thorough initial assessment and analysis of the drug situation, the state of play of drug policy and relevant legislation and the actual needs of all relevant stakeholders in the CA countries;

         Initiating and stimulating a process of collaboration between all relevant stakeholders in the CA countries (integrated approach, a balance between demand and supply reduction activities, communication between policy makers and professionals, etc.);

         Initiating and stimulating the development of a policy that is understood and supported by these stakeholders and by the general population;

         Initiating and stimulating the development of a policy that meets the essential international standards of good practice defined in EU drug policy documents;

         Transferring knowledge about good practices of policy making and implementation, of policy coordination structures and drug legislation in the EU. The applicability, challenges and needs of the CA countries are to be taken into account in order to ensure that the transferred knowledge will help to improve the quality and effectiveness of drug policies in the CA countries;

         Promoting the understanding that developing policies is an ongoing, cyclic process that consists of analysis, development, implementation and evaluation, and in which all relevant stakeholders should be involved;

         Contributing to an increased involvement of drug policy makers in the CA countries in international drug policy making processes and bodies;

         Contributing to the understanding that coordination and communication by a national inter-agency group for each CA country is an indispensable element for developing effective drug policies.

The following key expected results are envisaged:

         Activities in the field of drug policy making are monitored.

         A number of national drug strategies, action plans and legislation in at least 3 CA countries are reviewed and analysed for their compliance with international conventions and international/European standards.

         CA experts acquainted with models of drug strategies, action plans and legislation in selected EU Member States (at least 15 per willing country).

         National strategy, action plan and a set of legislation in the field of drugs drafted and adopted with the technical support of CADAP experts in at least 2 countries.

Component 1 – Work Package I (WP I): Review and analysis of the existing activities, documents and developments in the field of drug policy making.

 An important element will be to include the viewpoint of all key players in policy making and implementation, major governmental and non-governmental organisations in the fields of supply and demand reduction.

 Activities within WP I:

a)      Inventory of available and relevant information from existing drug policy including the findings from CADAP 5 and identification of key players in the field of policy making.

b)      Introducing the project and in particular component 1 to and get acquainted with key role players. This entails individual meetings with the most important key stakeholders and a kick-off meeting for other relevant stakeholders in each of the five countries. These stakeholders will include national coordinators, representatives from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), Ministry of Health (MoH) and Ministry of Interior (MoI), drug policy specialists, representatives from supply and health commissions in the parliaments.

c)      Assessment of the situation in the five CA countries (updating the findings from CADAP 5) regarding: existing strategies, action plans, legislation, coordination structures, monitoring and research capacities, and the drug situation. This assessment will also look into whether the current drug policies and coordination structure meet the topical priority needs in each country and identify information gaps through interviews and focus groups with key players in policy implementation (supply reduction: justice (prisons) and police, demand reduction: prevention, treatment and harm reduction).

d)      Assisting in generating an overview document per country reflecting achievements, challenges and priority needs in the field of drug policy to be presented to and discussed with the project partners and if necessary with other EU experts to get their input on the (implication of the) findings.

e)      The documents will then be presented and discussed in individual talks and focus groups with key stakeholders/ players in drug policy making and implementation in each country in order to collect their suggestions regarding priority needs and appropriate policy measures.

f)       The input from the stakeholders will be integrated in a document listing the drug policy priorities per country.

Component 1- Work Package II (WP II): Models of balanced national drug strategies, action plans and legislation

 The focus will be on presenting to each country's national institutions different models of balanced national drug strategies, action plans and legislation of selected EU Member States and recommendations on possible areas of improvement in CA corresponding documents. The core element will provide key players in the CA countries with information on the state of play in EU Member States: policy models, process and structure of policy making, good practice examples, relevant expertise in drug policy, etc.

Activities within WP II:

a)      Study visit of key stakeholders from the five CA countries to the Netherlands and to Brussels to get familiar with some selected issues of drug policy making. It will offer the opportunity to reflect on how to translate best practices from the Netherlands and other EU Member States in drug policy making in the five CA countries. The idea is to combine the visit to Brussels – which is envisaged to include meetings with representatives of DG Justice and EU External Action Service (EEAS) a. o. - with an HDG and CA regional meeting.

b)      Information meetings for key stakeholders in the five CA countries about drug policy plans (strategies, action plans and other relevant drug policy documents), models and structures (national coordination structures, EU structures and institutions such as HDG, EMCDDA, EUROPOL, Pompidou Group and other relevant international institutions such as UNODC, CND, INCB and WHO with particular focus on recent EU drug policy developments and documents (strategies, action plans, legislation, EU-Central Asia Drug Action Plan 2009-2013, EU-Central Asia Drug Action Plan 2014-2020 etc.)

c)      Informing stakeholders in the five CA countries about existing best practices in EU Member States’ in drug policy implementation, importance and use of monitoring, research and evaluation, the integrated approach, the role of politicians and media, etc.

d)      Seminars - in cooperation with component 2 - on importance of research and monitoring as a foundation for making and adapting policy plans, introducing the concept of a policy cycle: from policy plan to policy implementation to monitoring and evaluation and to adaptations of policy plans - “what to monitor” (priorities), “how to monitor” (instruments and structure).

e)      Discussions and/or focus groups with stakeholders on how the five CA countries could make use of experiences and expertise in EU countries, in developing their own drug policy structures, strategies, action plans and legislation (plan for Work Package III) and what are appropriate and priority policy responses taking into account the list of priorities formulated under stage 1.

Component 1 – Work Package III (WP III): Technical assistance in drafting drug strategies/action plans/legislation

 In the third stage the component will provide technical assistance and advice to the five countries to help them in drafting their own drug strategies/action plans/legislation following applicable European models and in line with the priorities of the successor of the "EU-Central Asia Drug Action Plan 2009-2013"/EU-Central Asia Drug Action Plan 2014-2020. The intention is to go beyond drafting documents by looking into conditions for policy implementation.

Activities within WP III:

a)      Based on the outcomes of stage 2, the component will assist in drafting policy papers (strategy, action plan and where appropriate other drug policy papers, including issues like defining and dividing tasks) and where needed elements of legislation.

b)      Expert seminars and individual exchanges to present and discuss these draft policy papers and legislation in each of the five countries and support their further development.

c)      Finalising drafts of the policy papers and legislation proposals, if political willingness is provided.

d)      These finalised drafts will be discussed in meetings of drug policy stakeholders in the five CA countries and with selected experts from EU Member States.

e)      In a regional conference including all five CA countries, the results of this process, i.e. policy papers and proposals for legislation of the countries will be presented and discussed.

f)       Finally, the policy papers and proposals for legislation will be – as far as possible - finalised. The component will support in this stage with advice and advocacy.

Component 1 – Work Package IV (WP IV): Strengthening inter-agency cooperation

The fourth element, assistance for the strengthening of inter-agency coordination, formation and work of inter-agency groups on strategy/action plan preparation, will be an on-going activity, accompanying the activities described above.

Activities within WP IV:

a)      This will entail an inventory and assessment of state of play regarding inter-agency coordination, formation and work of inter-agency groups and identifying needs in the five CA countries. This will be integrated in the initial assessments (Work package 1).

b)      Based on this inventory the component will assist in drafting proposals for and support development of inter-agency coordination in the five CA countries based on existing good practice regarding coordination structures in EU countries.

c)      The component will support the developments in the five CA countries with tailor-made advice and consultancy.

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