Christmas greetings from chair Viggo Lütcherath

Dear member municipalities of ECAD. We have soon put this year, that stands in the sign of “back to everyday life”, behind us. The pandemic does not affect us to the same extent now. It is possible to gather for courses and conferences. In June, together with WFAD, we held our Mayors’ Conference in Gothenburg, Sweden, after a two-year break. Many interesting and important lectures were given, and many new contacts were made. ECAD also elected a new board during our General Assembly. I hope that the new board will be able to work well together. During the General Assembly it was also decided to significantly reduce the membership fee in ECAD. We hope that this will mean that many more municipalities find it possible to participate. We also started a closer collaboration with WFAD and look forward to the opportunity to develop this collaboration further.

The work against illicit drugs is of continuous importance. We find that promoting restrictive approaches is met with strong resistance and opposition. Both lobby, political liberalism and user organizations have a clear voice in the public sphere. Nevertheless, I believe that our three basic pillars are still worth emphasizing: Prevention, protecting and policing.

We must prevent drug use in society both by creating good social structures and by having preventive measures aimed at particularly vulnerable groups. We must be able to offer support to those who already have an addiction problem by offering detoxification, treatment, rehabilitation, and recovery. We must protect society with laws and regulations that reduce the smuggling, production, and illicit sale of drugs. We must continue to convey knowledge about the harmful consequences and effects of drugs on individuals, families and society and argue for restrictive attitudes to drugs.

I am convinced that this work will continue to be of importance in the years to come. ECAD aims to be a partner in this work.

Now we will all have a well-deserved Christmas and New Year's holiday and gain strength and inspiration for new efforts in 2023. I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Kristiansand 16 Dec 2022
Viggo Lütcherath
Chair ECAD