UK drug laws used as tool of systemic racism, says ex-No 10 adviser

Simon Woolley says failure of drugs legislation is having a devastating impact on public health
The Guardian (UK)
Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Simon WoolleyBritain’s drug laws are racist and cause “high levels of mental health harm” among black people, a former No 10 race adviser has said. Simon Woolley said drugs legislation introduced 50 years ago had failed to cut the use, supply and harms associated with illegal drugs, and instead was used “as a tool of systemic racism”. Despite white people reporting higher rates of drug consumption, black people were more likely to be stopped and searched for suspected drug possession and were more likely to be arrested, charged and imprisoned for drug offences, he said. (See BMJ: Our drug laws are racist, and doctors must speak out—an essay by Simon Woolley)