Drug conventions serve as the cornerstone for domestic drug laws and impose a dual obligation upon states to prevent the misuse of controlled substances while ensuring their adequate availability for medical and scientific purposes. Despite the mandate that these obligations be enforced equally, the dominant paradigm enshrined in the drug conventions is an enforcement-heavy criminal justice response to controlled substances that prohibits and penalizes their misuse. Prioritizing restrictive control is to the detriment of ensuring adequate availability of and access to controlled medicines, thereby violating the rights of people who need them.

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