Drug legalisation

Justice review debate postponed as guidelines agreed

Debate over a review into justice policy in Guernsey has been postponed by the States.

The successful sursis, placed by Deputy Emilie McSwiggan, requires the Committee for Home Affairs to submit a full justice framework by December 2022.

Deputies were due to debate ideas for reform contained within the policy letter, but the committee will now have to "prepare evidence-based proposals" for justice reform, complete a drug and alcohol abuse strategy and establish alternatives for dealing with low-level drug offences.

Mrs McSwiggan argued the purpose of her proposals was to ensure a reduction in "harm caused to our community by crime", take a victim-focused approach and address "questions of restoration and rehabilitation".

She said: "I think stigma still pervades our approach to justice and criminal justice.

Mrs McSwiggan added any future system should be "more thoughtful about who we criminalise and why, and how we can approach justice and harm in a more constructive way".

The recommendations the committee must draw up are:

  • Minimising community harm caused by crime
  • Prioritising measures to address financial crime, border security and cybercrime
  • Preventing the criminalisation of vulnerable people
  • Promoting diversion from the criminal justice system, and from formal criminal justice measures, wherever appropriate alternatives exist
  • Rehabilitating offenders and restoring the harm done by their actions
  • Reviewing sentencing law and outcomes, with a commitment to reform of the appeals law, in particular against criminal convictions
  • Reviewing the operation and oversight of the criminal justice system
  • Establishing a "whole island" approach to justice and crime prevention

Deputy calls for relaxation of cannabis possession law

BBC Radio Guernsey

A Guernsey deputy wants the States to relax the law on cannabis possession.

Deputy Jonathan le Tocq is bringing an amendment to the Justice Review Report to be debated in the States next week.

It is supported by Deputy Laurie Queripel and calls for the Home Affairs and Health and Social Care committees to prepare a report on spending the money saved on reducing alcohol and domestic violence.

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