The United Nations’ special session on drugs at the General Assembly in New York in April may not have changed anything yet, but the discussions were a long-awaited step toward changes in policies and treaties. (Associated Press file photo)

Did the United Nations’ special session on drugs change anything?

Cannabis attorney who was there says the UN 'moves at a glacial pace,' but the discussions were a crucial step in the process

The United Nations held a special session on drugs at the General Assembly in New York in April, and cannabis industry attorney Christian Sederberg was there to see it.

Billed as “UNGASS,” the United Nations General Assembly Special Session was “a big deal,” Sederberg says, as it was the first time in more than 20 years that this kind of conversation on drug policies and tweaking of treaties has taken place.

Sederberg points out that since the UN process “moves at a glacial pace,” nothing that happened in the session will change drug policy or affect the marijuana legalization movement anytime soon, but the discussions there about cannabis were a step in that direction.

“The last time, I think they said the goal was to eliminate all drugs by now, just very unrealistic goals,” he adds. “As the discussions move towards evidence-based approaches…the United States has taken a more of a, you know, that there has to be flexibility. The dialogue is shifting.”

Watch the full episode of The Cannabist Show