How to overcome political and legal barriers to the implementation of a drug consumption room: an application of the policy agenda framework to the Belgian situation

Last updated on 11-6-2021 by Pierre Smith

Public Access


Peer reviewed scientific article



Background For more than 30 years, drug consumption rooms (DCRs) have been implemented in Western countries. DCRs are supported by a large body of evidence about public safety and public health effectiveness. However, a political consensus has never been achieved in Belgium on amending the existing law that explicitly penalises the supply of a room for facilitating drug use. Despite this adverse legal and policy framework, a DCR opened in the city of Liège in 2018. In this case report, we applied the theoretical framework proposed by Shiffman and Smith for policy agenda setting, in …

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