UNGASS 2016: Relevant information

UNGASS 2016: Relevant information

The Special Session of the General Assembly on the World Drug Problem (UNGASS 2016) will be convened from 19 – 21 April 2016 at United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The UNGASS on drugs is aimed at providing an objective and open assessment of international drug control and  shaping the global approach in the decades to come. Key nations convened last month in Vienna to move the negotiations forward ahead of the gathering.

The next UN General Assembly Special Session on Drugs (UNGASS) was due to be held in 2019, however in September 2012, the presidents of Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico called on the UN to host an international conference on drug policy reform and to bring forward this global drug policy summit meeting to 2016.

Relevant information

All the relevant information about the UNGASS, including the agenda, information for participants, is available on the UNGASS website . The final programme of the UNGASS is available here.  

We also encourage you to visit EURADs website, and follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Check back regularly to keep updated.

The UNGASS will be webcast live and will later be available in the UN WebTV archive.

Pass and logistics update for CSO

ECOSOC accredited NGOs

Representatives of NGOs in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council who have a valid UN grounds pass DO NOT require a Special Event Pass to access the UN compound on 18, 19 or 20 April 2016.  

Due to enhanced security procedures, representatives of NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC, including those with a valid UN grounds pass, DO require a Special Event Pass only on 21 April 2016.


Non-accredited NGOs

Representatives of NGOS that are not in consultative status with the ECOSOC and who have pre-registered, require a Special Event Pass for the entire period of the UNGASS, 19-21 April 2016.

Instructions on picking up Special Event Passes have been provided to civil society representatives who have confirmed interest in attending UNGASS 2016. 


For more information on UNGASS,  please visit UNGASS website 

UNGASS schedule

The General Assembly decided that the special session shall consist of a general debate and interactive multi-stakeholder round tables conducted in parallel with the plenary.

The UNGASS will start with an opening segment by the Chair of the delegation of the President of the seventieth regular session of the General Assembly, followed by a general debate.

In parallel, interactive roundtables will be held on the following topics:

  • Tuesday 19th, 3pm to 6pm: Roundtable 1 Demand reduction and related measures, including prevention and treatment, as well as health-related issues; and ensuring the availability of controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes, while preventing their diversion ("drugs and health")

  • Wednesday 20th, 10am to 1 pm: Roundtable 2 Supply reduction and related measures; responses to drug-related crime; and countering money-laundering and promoting judicial cooperation ("drugs and crime")

  • Wednesday 20th, 3pm to 6pm: Roundtable 3 Cross-cutting issues: drugs and human rights, youth, women, children and communities

  • Thursday 21st, 10am to 1pm: Roundtable 4 on Cross-cutting issues: new challenges, threats and realities in preventing and addressing the world drug problem in compliance with relevant international law, including the three drug control conventions; strengthening the principle of common and shared responsibility and international cooperation

  • Thursday 21st, 2pm to 5pm: Roundtable 5 Alternative development; regional, interregional and international cooperation on development-oriented balanced drug control policy; addressing socioeconomic issues.

Each roundtable will include five panelists nominated by the regional groups and one panelist nominated by the Civil Society Task Force, as well as up to two representatives of the UN system. A summary of the roundtables will be drafted by the chairs of each roundtable and presented in plenary


Side events

The final programme of side events is available here.

The Civil Society Task Force will hold a Civil Society Forum  on Monday 18th April from 10am to 1pm in Conference Room 12.  at United Nations Headquarters on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on the world drug problem. The goal of the forum is to present the findings of the CSTF global consultations leading up to the UNGASS, to provide valuable input on priorities and recommendations from civil society, as well as to present the “Marketplace” project, a collaboration between the Vienna NGO Committee on Drugs and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Concept note and agenda available here.

Join us at our side events: 

Wednesday 20th April 

Organized by San Patrignano Foundation, Stichting Eurad (Europe Against Drug), Recovered Users Network-RUN, World Federation Against Drugs, and European Cities Against Drugs

Thursday 21st April

Organized by the Government of Turkey and the Turkish Green Crescent Society

Organized by the Governments of Sri Lanka, Sweden and Latvia, Community Alliance for Drug Free Youth, Smart Approaches to Marijuana, World Federation Against Drugs and European Cities Against Drugs