The Legislative Chamber of the Federal District (CLDF) analyzes a bill (PL) that establishes a fine of two minimum wages for individuals who are caught with illegal drugs for personal consumption.
The proposal, authored by district deputy Rodrigo Delmasso (Republicans), creates a sanction not provided for in the federal criminal legislation that deals with the matter. According to the Delmasso project, the fine, which would have been R$ 2,200, could be used to provide community services in public bodies or social entities. If the person caught is a repeat offender, the fine would double in value, reaching up to R$4,400.
“I presented this project on behalf of the users’ families. The fine is educational. For the low-sufficient, who cannot afford to support themselves, there is the option of providing community services. Unfortunately, drug dealers use people’s addiction to earn money and finance crime,” says the district.
The project was approved by the Education, Health and Culture Commission (CESC) of the Legislative Chamber. To become law, however, it still needs to go through other commissions and be approved by the House’s plenary.
The 2006 federal drug law already provides for the possibility of pedagogical warnings and the provision of community services and educational measures for drug users caught with narcotics. There is, however, no legal provision for the imposition of fines against these people.
In a statement, the Cannabis Social Club of Brasília, a civil society entity that works in the debate and formulation of public policies on drugs, criticized the PL. In the assessment of the organization, which brings together specialists such as lawyers and researchers, the text is unconstitutional.
“The sanction of an administrative fine established in the bill is tainted with unconstitutionality as it is a matter related to the legislative competence of the Federal Union”.
For the organization, a proposal in this direction, which reinforces the criminalization of drug users, goes against the most advanced international practices on the subject.
“The world is moving towards the decriminalization of substance use in its various contexts (spiritual, medicinal, recreational, social, therapeutic, among other possibilities). The conclusion reached is the bankruptcy of the drug wars. Meanwhile, Legislative Houses Brazilians insist on discussing public policy on the use of psychoactive substances based on the repression and intervention of the State’s police power”.
Similar bills are being introduced in other states. One of them, of similar content, is in progress at the City Council of Rio de Janeiro, to punish with a fine of R$ 400 whoever is caught in possession of marijuana.
“It is incredible to realize that a so-called specialized commission in education, health and culture ignores the historical context of drug prohibition in Brazilian society, with a strong bias in the eugenics of the white race, in the pursuit of the culture of the original and enslaved African peoples, in addition to the medicine itself that he disowned ancestral knowledge under the justification of medical science in turmoil. The issue of drugs was no longer treated as a public health problem and became a matter of national security, with the fight against drug trafficking, with severe consequences for the Brazilian population, especially the most vulnerable who live on a daily basis with an unofficially declared urban civil war.”, adds the entity, in a statement.
Brasília’s Social Cannabis Club also argues that, according to data on the consumption of psychoactive substances, the total number of addicts does not exceed 20% of users.
“An overwhelming majority makes normal use, without any harmful consequences that would justify an intervention of the ‘ultima ratio’, which is the power of penal force”, he says. “It must be recognized that problematic use actually exists. People in such situations need the health care and social care that is expected to be achieved by public policies”, he adds.
Source: Federal District BdF
Edition: Flávia Quirino