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United States Federal Drug Policy

Chapter

Abstract

The United States federal government plays an active role in setting and implementing drug policy. Federal agencies define the legal status of drugs and penalties for their trafficking and misuse; enforce drug-control laws; fund and conduct drug-abuse research, treatment, prevention, and public-information campaigns; and conduct drug-control operations abroad. Federal spending on drug control has increased dramatically in recent decades, with the “War on Drugs”, and is now approximately 14 billion dollars. The balance between public-health and law-enforcement approaches to combating drug abuse historically has shifted back and forth; the most recent developments suggest a turn toward public health. The policymaking process is often driven by political concerns more than evidence, and the objectives and effectiveness of federal policy are hotly disputed.

Keywords

Federal drug policy Drug-control agencies Drug-control budget Drug-control history 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Public PolicyPepperdine UniversityMalibuUSA
  2. 2.BOTEC Analysis CorporationLos AngelesUSA

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